Palaeoenvironments and chronology of the Damvlei Later Stone Age site, Free State, South Africa - CNRS - Centre national de la recherche scientifique Access content directly
Journal Articles South African Archaeological Bulletin Year : 2023

Palaeoenvironments and chronology of the Damvlei Later Stone Age site, Free State, South Africa

Abstract

The Modder River basin has been the focus of extensive surveys followed by targeted excavations of specific erosional gullies (known locally as dongas), where Middle and Later Stone Age artefacts and fossils are abundant. At Damvlei, a donga located on the left bank of the Modder, lithic artefacts and fossils were observed in the 1990s. Here we present the results of two seasons of fieldwork (2019/21) at this locality, as well as unpublished surface faunal remains collected in 1995/96. Damvlei formed as a result of overbank deposition of the Modder, as indicated by micromorphological analysis. The accumulation of the sedimentary sequence beneath the artefact-bearing levels started at 27±3 ka at the earliest, based on optically stimulated luminescence dating. Artefacts, faunal remains, and phytoliths show that the site is characterised by Holocene Later Stone Age technology in an open-grassland environment typical of the terminal Florisian Land Mammal Age. Damvlei expands our knowledge of the Later Stone Age in the western Free State, and highlights the need for more extensive dating programmes aimed at framing human occupation in the central interior of South Africa.
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Dates and versions

hal-04378185 , version 1 (10-01-2024)
hal-04378185 , version 2 (07-02-2024)

Identifiers

  • HAL Id : hal-04378185 , version 2

Cite

Michael Toffolo, Chantal Tribolo, Liora Kolska Horwitz, Lloyd Rossouw, Britt Bousman, et al.. Palaeoenvironments and chronology of the Damvlei Later Stone Age site, Free State, South Africa. South African Archaeological Bulletin, 2023, 78 (219), pp.57-74. ⟨hal-04378185v2⟩
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