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Patrick Semal, Anne Hauzeur, Hélène Rougier, Isabelle Crevecoeur, Mietje Germonpré, Stéphane Pirson, Paul Haesaerts, Cécile Jungels, Damien Flas, Michel Toussaint, Bruno Maureille, Hervé Bocherens, Thomas Higham, and Johannes van der Plicht (2013)

Radiocarbon dating of human remains and associated archaeological material

Anthropologica et Præhistorica, 123/2012:331-356.

The Neandertal skeletal material from Spy cave has finally been directly dated by AMS 14C one hundred twenty-five years following their discovery. Fifteen human bones and teeth were dated in order to verify new morphological analyses and determine the age of the Spy Neandertals. Collagen from 14 faunal remains and three bone or ivory artefacts were also dated in order to establish a radiocarbon framework for the three “fauna-bearing levels” defined by the original excavators. Apart from several dates that are clearly too young due to contamination or diagenetic influences, our results show that the three oldest dates (ca. 36,000 uncal BP) for the two Neandertal adults are reliable given that the quality parameters are within the accepted confidence interval. We discuss the results of these new dates and their significance in light of the site's stratigraphy, the local Belgian context, and the wider European framework. Radiocarbon dating of Neolithic human skeletal material is also presented and discussed.
RBINS Publication(s), Peer Review, International Redaction Board, RBINS Collection(s)
In: H. ROUGIER & P. SEMAL (ed.), Spy cave. 125 years of multidisciplinary research at the Betche aux Rotches (Jemeppe-sur-Sambre, Province of Namur, Belgium), Volume 1. Brussels, Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, Royal Belgian Society of Anthropology and Praehistory & NESPOS Society.

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