Mordechai E. Kislev

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The presence of burned seeds, wood, and flint at the Acheulian site of Gesher Benot Ya'aqov in Israel is suggestive of the control of fire by humans nearly 790,000 years ago. The distribution of the site's small burned flint fragments suggests that burning occurred in specific spots, possibly indicating hearth locations. Wood of six taxa was burned at the(More)
The Acheulean site of Gesher Benot Ya'aqov in the Dead Sea Rift of Israel documents hominin movements and technological development on a corridor between Africa and Eurasia. New age data place the site at 780,000 years ago (oxygen isotope stage 19), considerably older than previous estimates. The archaeological data from the site portray strong affinities(More)
It is generally accepted that the fig tree was domesticated in the Near East some 6500 years ago. Here we report the discovery of nine carbonized fig fruits and hundreds of drupelets stored in Gilgal I, an early Neolithic village, located in the Lower Jordan Valley, which dates to 11,400 to 11,200 years ago. We suggest that these edible fruits were gathered(More)
The Acheulian site of Gesher Benot Ya'aqov (Israel) has revealed a unique association of edible nuts with pitted hammers and anvils. Located in the Dead Sea rift, on the boundary between the Arabian and African plates, the site dates to the Early-Middle Pleistocene, oxygen isotope stage 19. In a series of strata, seven species of nuts, most of which can be(More)
The spatial designation of discrete areas for different activities reflects formalized conceptualization of a living space. The results of spatial analyses of a Middle Pleistocene Acheulian archaeological horizon (about 750,000 years ago) at Gesher Benot Ya'aqov, Israel, indicate that hominins differentiated their activities (stone knapping, tool use,(More)
The spread of thalassemia among prehistoric populations of the Mediterranean Basin has been linked to the increased risk to early agriculturalists posed by the Plasmodium falciparum parasite. The diagnosis of the disease in human skeletal remains, however, has usually been based on a single pathological criterion, porotic hyperostosis. This paper reports on(More)
An ancient date seed (Phoenix dactylifera L.) excavated from Masada and radiocarbon-dated to the first century Common Era was germinated. Climatic conditions at the Dead Sea may have contributed to the longevity of this oldest, directly dated, viable seed. Growth and development of the seedling over 26 months was compatible with normal date seedlings(More)
The Agricultural Revolution in Western Asia, which took place some 11,000 years ago, was a turning point in human history [Childe, V. G. (1952) New Light on the Most Ancient East (Routledge & Kegan Paul, London)]. In investigating the cultural processes that could have led from gathering to intentional cultivation, various authors have discussed and tested(More)