European Middle and Upper Palaeolithic radiocarbon dates are often older than they look: problems with previous dates and some remedies

  title={European Middle and Upper Palaeolithic radiocarbon dates are often older than they look: problems with previous dates and some remedies},
  author={Thomas F.G. Higham},
  pages={235 - 249}
  • T. Higham
  • Published 1 March 2011
  • Environmental Science
  • Antiquity
Few events of European prehistory are more important than the transition from ancient to modern humans around 40 000 years ago, a period that unfortunately lies near the limit of radiocarbon dating. This paper shows that as many as 70 per cent of the oldest radiocarbon dates in the literature may be too young, due to contamination by modern carbon. Future dates can be made more secure — and previous dates revised — using more refined methods of pre-treatment described here. 
The older, the better? On the radiocarbon dating of Upper Palaeolithic burials in Northern Eurasia and beyond
  • Y. Kuzmin
  • Environmental Science, Geography
  • 2019
Abstract The reliability of radiocarbon dates for Palaeolithic human burials is of utmost importance for prehistoric archaeologists. Recently obtained dates for several such burials in central Russia
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Using ultrafiltration to purify faunal bone collagen before radiocarbon dating, ages at least 10 ka 14C years older are obtained, close to or beyond the limit of the radiOCarbon method for the Mousterian at Jarama VI and Neanderthal fossils at Zafarraya.
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Revised direct radiocarbon dating of the Vindija G1 Upper Paleolithic Neandertals.
These results and the recent redating of a number of purportedly old modern human skeletal remains in Europe to younger time periods highlight the importance of fine chronological control when studying this biocultural time period and the tenuous nature of monolithic scenarios for the establishment of modern humans and earlier phases of the Upper Paleolithic in Europe.
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Subsamples of charcoal from a number of different excavation contexts at the early modern human (Homo sapiens) site of Niah Great Cave (Malaysia) were accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) 14C dated.
Dates Are Not Just Data: Paleolithic Settlement Patterns in Siberia Derived from Radiocarbon Records
The large radiocarbon database now established for Paleolithic sites in Siberia and the Russian Far East can be used to build up a picture of relative population size in these regions. We consider
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New TIMS dates from British sites underpin and extend the growing model of mammalian faunal history during the Late Pleistocene. The sequence of British faunas during the three successive warm phases