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The impact of rapid climate change on prehistoric societies during the Holocene in the Eastern Mediterranean

The impact of rapid climate change on prehistoric societies during the Holocene in the Eastern Mediterranean
The impact of rapid climate change on prehistoric societies during the Holocene in the Eastern Mediterranean
In this paper we explore the impact of Rapid Climate Change (RCC) on prehistoric communities in the Eastern Mediterranean during the Early and Middle Holocene. Our focus is on the social implications of the four major climate cold anomalies that have recently been identified as key time-windows for global RCC (Mayewski et al. 2004). These cooling anomalies are well-dated, with Greenland ice-core resolution, due to synchronicity between warm/cold foraminifera ratios in Mediterranean core LC21 as a proxy for surface water temperature, and Greenland GISP2 non sea-salt (nss) [K+] ions as a proxy for the intensification of the Siberian High and for polar air outbreaks in the northeast Mediterranean (Rohling et al. 2002). Building on these synchronisms, the GISP2 age- model supplies the following precise time-intervals for archaeological RCC research: (i) 8.6–8.0 ka, (ii) 6.0–5.2 ka, (iii) 4.2–4.0 ka and (iv) 3.1–2.9 ka calBP. For each of these RCC time intervals, based on detailed 14C-based chronological studies, we investigate contemporaneous cultural developments. From our studies it follows that RCC-related climatic deterioration is a major factor underlying social change, although always at work within a wide spectrum of social, cultural, economic and religious factors.
1854-2492
7-59
Weninger, Bernhard
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Clare, Lee
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Rohling, Eelco
a2a27ef2-fcce-4c71-907b-e692b5ecc685
Bar-Yosef, Ofer
624c0acf-739b-4387-b6b0-d4d87cb40f9f
Boehner, Utz
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Budja, Mihael
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Bundschuh, Manfred
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Feurdean, Angelica
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Gebe, Hans Georg
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Joeris, Olaf
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Lindstaedter, Jörg
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Mayewski, Paul
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Muehlenbruch, Tobias
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Reingruber, Agathe
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Rollefson, Gary
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Schyle, Daniel
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Thissen, Laurens
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Todorova, Henrieta
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Zielhofer, Christoph
bb26ca17-6776-4fa6-a674-f54661c8f6eb
Weninger, Bernhard
998a638b-3099-41b5-8b05-a03bb0c2e3a2
Clare, Lee
29f27eb9-3144-4536-9c8a-a0bddc84ccb2
Rohling, Eelco
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Bar-Yosef, Ofer
624c0acf-739b-4387-b6b0-d4d87cb40f9f
Boehner, Utz
9431db32-2545-4fc2-b5e5-6a33afc629b1
Budja, Mihael
fe46a002-359d-4ec3-bd54-43e3b8d3141a
Bundschuh, Manfred
923ee4ee-35e3-4040-8caa-89ca33c24996
Feurdean, Angelica
2428fe7e-1fe8-429d-b01d-cfb7dd1e9aa5
Gebe, Hans Georg
f43efe90-29a3-403f-b89f-387b329bfa73
Joeris, Olaf
6cfc41d7-37d0-4c88-9c1c-a5232d339daf
Lindstaedter, Jörg
c7a41f30-a3ab-4fa8-9bfe-72756e5cb01c
Mayewski, Paul
367fe005-36a2-4185-bba7-0794e30905ab
Muehlenbruch, Tobias
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Reingruber, Agathe
d58a901b-94bd-4b60-ab4d-34d9ba9e0dd8
Rollefson, Gary
7b565b8a-6740-4546-bfc9-2fbfa32ab601
Schyle, Daniel
51d7801d-2f74-4dd3-ae56-61f4ddcc1122
Thissen, Laurens
45002d99-d754-4897-b87b-171057fffcdb
Todorova, Henrieta
6b998ea6-0067-4e79-a31b-a59686851a36
Zielhofer, Christoph
bb26ca17-6776-4fa6-a674-f54661c8f6eb

Weninger, Bernhard, Clare, Lee, Rohling, Eelco, Bar-Yosef, Ofer, Boehner, Utz, Budja, Mihael, Bundschuh, Manfred, Feurdean, Angelica, Gebe, Hans Georg, Joeris, Olaf, Lindstaedter, Jörg, Mayewski, Paul, Muehlenbruch, Tobias, Reingruber, Agathe, Rollefson, Gary, Schyle, Daniel, Thissen, Laurens, Todorova, Henrieta and Zielhofer, Christoph (2009) The impact of rapid climate change on prehistoric societies during the Holocene in the Eastern Mediterranean. Documenta Praehistorica, 36, 7-59. (doi:10.4312/dp.36.2).

Record type: Article

Abstract

In this paper we explore the impact of Rapid Climate Change (RCC) on prehistoric communities in the Eastern Mediterranean during the Early and Middle Holocene. Our focus is on the social implications of the four major climate cold anomalies that have recently been identified as key time-windows for global RCC (Mayewski et al. 2004). These cooling anomalies are well-dated, with Greenland ice-core resolution, due to synchronicity between warm/cold foraminifera ratios in Mediterranean core LC21 as a proxy for surface water temperature, and Greenland GISP2 non sea-salt (nss) [K+] ions as a proxy for the intensification of the Siberian High and for polar air outbreaks in the northeast Mediterranean (Rohling et al. 2002). Building on these synchronisms, the GISP2 age- model supplies the following precise time-intervals for archaeological RCC research: (i) 8.6–8.0 ka, (ii) 6.0–5.2 ka, (iii) 4.2–4.0 ka and (iv) 3.1–2.9 ka calBP. For each of these RCC time intervals, based on detailed 14C-based chronological studies, we investigate contemporaneous cultural developments. From our studies it follows that RCC-related climatic deterioration is a major factor underlying social change, although always at work within a wide spectrum of social, cultural, economic and religious factors.

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Published date: 2009
Additional Information: (Neolithic Studies 16)

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Local EPrints ID: 73088
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/73088
ISSN: 1854-2492
PURE UUID: 0b71669f-fa7e-46f7-bd50-60331b4ca586
ORCID for Eelco Rohling: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-5349-2158

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Date deposited: 01 Mar 2010
Last modified: 17 Dec 2019 01:59

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Contributors

Author: Bernhard Weninger
Author: Lee Clare
Author: Eelco Rohling ORCID iD
Author: Ofer Bar-Yosef
Author: Utz Boehner
Author: Mihael Budja
Author: Manfred Bundschuh
Author: Angelica Feurdean
Author: Hans Georg Gebe
Author: Olaf Joeris
Author: Jörg Lindstaedter
Author: Paul Mayewski
Author: Tobias Muehlenbruch
Author: Agathe Reingruber
Author: Gary Rollefson
Author: Daniel Schyle
Author: Laurens Thissen
Author: Henrieta Todorova
Author: Christoph Zielhofer

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