The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

New U-series results for the speleogenesis and the Palaeolithic archaeology of the Almonda karstic system (Torres Novas, Portugal)

Record type: Article

The Almonda karstic system is an extensive network of cavities associated with the spring of the Almonda River. Among those of archaeological interest, the lowermost, 5–15 m above the current spring, contain deposits of Upper Palaeolithic and Holocene age. Higher up in a 70 m high escarpment, the labyrinth of passages features several collapsed cave entrances, two of which have been cleared for archaeological excavation: the Gruta da Aroeira/Galerias Pesadas/Brecha das Lascas complex of Acheulean localities, and the Middle Palaeolithic site of Gruta da Oliveira. U-series dating of speleothems associated with these deposits places the Acheulean of the Almonda beyond 390 ka, dates the palaeophreatic level of ?40 m above the extant outlet back to a time before 200 ka, and constrains the accumulation of the Gruta da Oliveira sediment fill to between 23 ka and at least 102 ka. Bones from Gruta da Oliveira layer 8, which contains the uppermost human occupation of the site, were dated to the 34–40 ka range by U-series (Diffusion/Adsorption), in good agreement with available radiocarbon results. Combined with evidence from other sections of the system, these results set at half a million years ago or more the earliest human settlement of the Atlantic façade of Iberia, provide the first secure chronometric evidence for the emergence of the Acheulean in the peninsula (during Marine Isotope Stage 12 at the latest), and support the regional persistence of a Neanderthal-associated Middle Palaeolithic beyond 41.5 ka (the time of emergence elsewhere in western and central Europe of the Protoaurignacian, widely assumed to be modern human-related). U-series dating of speleothems collected in the inner passages of the system suggests uninterrupted speleothem formation through the Middle and Upper Pleistocene, enabling the construction of a high-resolution continental palaeonvironmental record for comparison with the evidence from the deep sea cores obtained off the Portuguese coast

Full text not available from this repository.

Citation

Hoffmann, Dirk L., Pike, Alistair W.G., Wainer, Karine and Zilhao, Joao (2012) New U-series results for the speleogenesis and the Palaeolithic archaeology of the Almonda karstic system (Torres Novas, Portugal) Quaternary International (doi:10.1016/j.quaint.2012.05.027).

More information

e-pub ahead of print date: 24 May 2012
Organisations: Archaeology

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 345933
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/345933
ISSN: 1040-6182
PURE UUID: 280cc087-0eb1-433c-ab9d-52316dd66f33

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 07 Dec 2012 10:33
Last modified: 18 Jul 2017 05:06

Export record

Altmetrics

Contributors

Author: Dirk L. Hoffmann
Author: Karine Wainer
Author: Joao Zilhao

University divisions


Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton: eprints@soton.ac.uk

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/cgi/oai2

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.

×