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There was human presence in Gavdos 300,000 years ago

Posted: 08 Dec 2018, 10:52
by Erno
There was human presence in Gavdos 300,000 years ago - 8 December, 2018


New research data reverses what we believed so far - Findings show human presence in Gavdos thousands of years before the Neolithic period.

Until recently, researchers placed human presence in Crete around 7000 BC.

However, findings from recent years in Gavdos overturn the assumptions so far and lead to conclusions dating to the human presence in the area since the Paleolithic period, that is, about 300,000 years ago!

These estimates significantly change the scientific assumptions for Crete and the region of southern Europe as well, says the Chief of the Office of Antiquities of Chania, Eleni Papadopoulou:

"Of what the excavations have shown over the last 10 years, the archaeological and cultural heritage of Gavdos, the southernmost end of Europe, is enormous. As recent surveys reveal the human presence in Gavdos is now documented, it is documented until the Paleolithic period, which has changed the data for Crete and the wider region of southern Europe.

That is, while until now we considered that the human presence in Crete actually begins from the 7th millennium before Christ now with the stonework that has been identified, studied and presented in scientific publications, we are now going back to the Palaeolithic period, that is 300,000 years ago. There was human presence on the island, there were activities and stonework."

The range of archaeological culture of Gavdos is remarkable for the island.

It is characteristic that there are findings showing that during the Roman era there was extensive cultivation of the vine and olive tree on the border island, while in the area of ​​Agios Ioannis [north coast of Gavdos, see above map] a type of water collection system was created, as explained by the head of the Office of Antiquities of Chania, Yiannis Christodoulakos:

"We distinguish an extensive dispersion of carved structures from antiquity that indicate a systematic production of the vine and most probably of the olive. Because of the great dispersal, it appears that at some seasons in antiquity there was prosperity in these crops.

We have also found a work that we can determine to originate from antiquity and concerns the effort of concentrating the water and its transfer to the area of ​​Agios Ioannis where there was probably a small town located during the Roman years. We are talking about a watercourse area, with a small reservoir and a conduit made to flood the water in a natural flow for one kilometer.

These remarks were made during the workshop on the theme of Gavdos and its monuments, which was held yesterday evening at the Office of Antiquities of Chania in collaboration with the Regional Unity of Chania. The aim was to communicate all the knowledge and studies about the ancient and newer culture of Gavdos with a view to its emergence.

In the effort to promote the cultural wealth of the border island, the claim to the establishment of a Cultural Centre was stated by the mayor of Gavdos, Evangelia Kallinikou:

"We are in close cooperation with the Archaeological Service and with the University of Crete, which is also excavating the island because we have already started designing a sustainable model for the inhabitants of Gavdos and also with the prospect of many people visiting this place. The municipality is already taking part in the restoration for as long as the law permits. Beyond that, we have begun and demand the establishment of a cultural centre in Gavdos with a museological character. It is not easy to build a museum in Gavdos but it is easy to show all this wealth through a cultural centre."

The evening was held in the context of the celebrations dedicated to Gavdos, which are part of the European Heritage Year.

From: ... ronia-prin

Re: There was human presence in Gavdos 300,000 years ago

Posted: 08 Dec 2018, 11:43
by Erno
For further reading:

"Palaeolithic industries from the island of Gavdos, near neighbour to Crete in Greece", 2009: