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Belgians Give Iran a Hand to Study Aurignacian Residence

Tehran, Apr. 20 (CHN) - The historical cave of Yafteh in Khorram Abad of Lorestan province, west of Iran, will soon host a group of Iranian and Belgian archaeologists to excavate the area and study remains of the ancient human beings living there.

Aurignacian is the name of a culture of the Upper Palaeolithic present in Europe and south west Asia. It dates to between 34,000 and 23,000 B.C. The name originates from the type site of Aurignac in the Haute Garonne area of France.

According to head of the Iranian archaeologists of the joint team, Fereidoun Biglari, remains of Aurignacian people, dating to the New Paleolithic Era, were previously discovered in Yafteh cave by an American team of archaeologists from Yale University, headed by Frank Hole.

The dating studies carried out by Yale University showed that the tools found in the cave dated back to 40,000 to 28,000 years ago.

Professor Marcel Otte, the co-director of the team said "I think Iran possesses a good amount of information about the origins of modern man in Europe. I've been working in different places in Asia already, but from the literature and from what I've studied elsewhere about Iran, this country seems to be at the heart of this focus that has concerned the whole European continent. Here, we found old sites of this period such as Yafteh Cave at khoramabad, but new researches have to be undertaken on the field for better understanding."

The new round of studies aims at a detailed analysis of each and every piece, including even small bones, stones, etc. to determine the exact date of the human residences of the cave and to find out whether the Yafteh cave has been one of the primary residences of the Aurignaci people.

Many of the tools and remains discovered by the Yale team that could have provided archaeologists with useful information were lost due to lack of proper facilities, explained Biglari, adding that the remaining stone tools from those discoveries are now kept in Iran's National Museum and Yale University Museum.

... Payvand News - 4/23/05 ... --

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