Mousterian lithic assemblages of merdivenli cave

İsmail Baykara, Steven L. Kuhn, Derya Silibolatlaz Baykara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Most scientists agree that modern humans left Africa relatively recently. However, there is less agreement about the number of dispersal events and the route or routes taken by humans and when they migrated out of Africa. The earliest evidence for a dispersal of Homo sapiens into Eurasia comes from the central Levant, but it is unclear how geographically extensive this early dispersal was. Likewise, many researchers agree that Neanderthals dispersed back into the Levant during MIS 5 (123-130 Ka.), but it is uncertain where those populations originated. Information from areas geographically intermediate between the Levant and more distal parts of Eurasia is crucial to obtaining a more realistic understanding of the ebb and flow of human Pleistocene populations. This article examines Middle Paleolithic artifact assemblages from Merdivenli Cave in the Hatay Region, southern Anatolia (Turkey) in order to assess the similarities with better known assemblages from neighboring areas. The stone tools from Merdivenli Cave are characterized Levallois production similar to “Tabun C type” Mousterian assemblages, and therefore it is possible that these assemblages were also associated with archaic Homo sapiens, as in the central Levant.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)101-115
Number of pages15
JournalMediterranean Archaeology and Archaeometry
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2016


  • Human dispersals
  • Levant
  • Middle paleolithic
  • Turkey

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Conservation
  • Archaeology
  • History
  • Anthropology
  • Archaeology


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