Dating of stone tools will help track Homo sapiens migration out of Africa
ST. LOUIS — Greece has long been known as a bastion of research into a civilization that gave birth to democracy 2,500 years ago. Now, the country appears poised to become a key player in the study of European Neandertals and ancient human groups that entered Southeast Europe from Homo sapiens’ African birthplace.
New geological evidence from a Greek archaeological site indicates that hand axes and other stone artifacts previously unearthed from one soil layer date to about 206,000 years ago, says geoarchaeologist Vangelis Tourloukis of Eberhard Karls Universitӓt Tübingen in Germany. Stone implements from a higher sediment layer at the site, called Kokkinopilos, date to about 172,000 years ago, Tourloukis reported March 27 at the annual meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists.
Neandertals and their ancestors inhabited Europe