Aegeus Society For Aegean Prehistory


12 December 2010

Building a tephrostratigraphic framework for the Paleolithic of Central Anatolia, Turkey

Christian A. Tryon, M. Amelia V. Logan, Damase Mouralis, Steve Kuhn, Ludovic Slimak, Nur Balkan-Atlı Journal of Archaeological Science 36.3 (March 2009): 637-652.


The Central Anatolian Volcanic Province (CAVP) in Turkey preserves widespread deposits of Quaternary tephra, presently associated with a small but growing number of Paleolithic archaeological sites. We use multivariate analyses of the abundances of a suite of nine major and minor element oxides determined by electron probe microanalysis. From these data, we construct a classificatory model for correlating distal tephra to one of five volcanic edifices or eruptive phases within the CAVP. Application of this model to distal deposits of primary tephra-fall and reworked tuffaceous sediments from the archaeological sites of Körkuyu and Kaletepe Deresi 3 indicates Late to possibly Early Pleistocene ages for the artifact assemblages there, and provides a fundamental tephrostratigraphic framework to examine spatial and temporal variation in hominin behavior comparable to that of other regions, such as eastern Africa.


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