Tag Archives: Aterian

Paleolithic Foliates in Africa

  Fig. 1 shows two bifacially retouched MSA foliates from the central Sahara made from Quartzite, the larger one is 12,5 cm long. Foliates are part of  four important African technocomplexes: the early Nubian complex, the Aterian, the Lupemban and the Stillbay … Continue reading

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The forgotten Paleolithic heritage of Tunisia

  This post displays several chert MSA tools from different surface scatters from the Gafsa area (Literary Arabic: قفصة Qafṣah ; Tunisian Arabic: ‎ [ˈqɑfsˤɑ] Qafṣa , southern accent: [ˈɡɑfsˤɑ] Gafṣa ), originally called Capsa in Latin, which is the capital of Gafsa Governorate … Continue reading

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Early Blades

  This is a retouched large blade (12 cm) from the Fontmaure Mousterian site. Pradel called this artifacts  “racloirs”, maybe only to confirm the doctrine that the Mousterian is a flake-based industry. Anthropologists often suggest that blades are per se an … Continue reading

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The Aterian: Do not forget the tangs!

These are Aterian artifacts from a surface scatter at Jbeïlat mountain in Mauritania (a tanged point, a thick non-Levallois blade and a foliated artifact). Historically, the “Mousterian” of North Africa was classified as a Middle Paleolithic including side scrapers, notches … Continue reading

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Transitions during the Paleolithic of North Africa

These are three Epipaleolithic artifacts from western Morocco. While we know numerous sites from the Iberomaurusian and Capsian, industries from the Initial Upper Paleolithic in N-Africa are scare. The period between the Middle Palaeolithic (a Levallois-Mousterian with or without pedunculated … Continue reading

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Bechar / Algeria: Aterian Artifacts and their functional meaning

These are some “Aterian” artifacts from the Algerian Sahara showing the variability of a random sample. The morphological continuum of Aterian tools ranges from pointed and elongated triangular forms to rounded and squat blunt forms, as demonstrated in this post. … Continue reading

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Murzuq

A small handaxe from the Desert near Murzuq. Murzuq is an oasis in South-Western Libya on the northern edge of the Murzuq Sand Sea (Idhan Murzuq). Murzuq was once an important assembly place for caravans to Lake Niger and Lake … Continue reading

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To Be or not to Be Aterian

Middle Paleolithic (Middle Stone Age) Ensembles of Northern Africa have been found over a vast area, reaching from the Mediterranean to the Southern Margins of the Sahara, and from the Maghreb to the Nile Valley. Nowadays there is a broad … Continue reading

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The Aterian: a Technocomplex created by H. Sapiens

Once thought to be an equivalent of the European Upper Paleolithic, the Aterian of the Maghreb, Libya and Egypt is now securely dated to OIS 5, 4 and 3 with the latest dates between 40 k.a. BP by TL, C-14,and ESR. The … Continue reading

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Aterian point from Bechar/Algeria

This is a fine Aterian point from Bechar, an non-dated Algerian open air site. Aterian points are a local variant of MSA-points in Africa that may associated with some of the earliest evidence for projectile technology for hunting. It is … Continue reading

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