The spring of Nadaouiyeh Aïn Askar — Paleoecology of a Paleolithic oasis in arid central Syria

Kalbe, Johannes and Jagher, Reto and Pümpin, Christine. (2016) The spring of Nadaouiyeh Aïn Askar — Paleoecology of a Paleolithic oasis in arid central Syria. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 446. pp. 252-262.

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The site Nadaouiyeh Aïn Askar, an ancient artesian spring near the village of El Kowm, Central Syria, is an example of long lasting human occupation in a desert environment throughout the Middle and Late Pleistocene. The excavations expose a succession of sedimentary units, containing an artifact assemblage assigned to the Acheulean techno-complex. Unit VI, attributed to the Marine Isotope Stage 13, is rich in ostracod valves and was chosen for the present environmental study. From these sediments Heterocypris salina, H. incongruens, Cyprideis torosa, Ilyocypris cf. bradyi, I. inermis, I. cf. gibba, Darwinula stevensoni, Plesiocypridopsis newtoni, Pseudocandona compressa, Candona cf. neglecta, Pseudocandona sp., Trajancypris sp., Physocypria sp. and Mixtacandona sp. are documented for the first time in the Middle Pleistocene of the arid environment of central Syria. Data from these microfossils as well as geochemical proxies implicate three phases, turning the wetland from a palustrine setting into a spring supplied pond with increasing salinity. The high mineralization of the spring waters enables a discussion about early hominin adaptability to brackish waters as drinking water resources, common within the steppe and desert environments along the “out-of-Africa”—corridor in the eastern Mediterranean.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Umweltwissenschaften > Integrative Biologie > Integrative Prähistorische und Naturwissenschaftliche Archäologie (IPNA)
05 Faculty of Science > Departement Umweltwissenschaften > Ehemalige Einheiten Umweltwissenschaften > Geoarchäologie (Rentzel)
UniBasel Contributors:Pümpin, Christine and Jagher, Reto
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
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Last Modified:27 Oct 2017 13:56
Deposited On:27 Oct 2017 13:56

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