With the first evidence of the use of fire or tool-making, Wonderwerk Cave in South Africa has been confirmed as the oldest human-populated grotto in the world , according to new research published in Quaternary Science Reviews, led by a team of geologists and geologists. archaeologists from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (HU) and the University of Toronto.
Axes and fire
The study establishes the change from Olduvayenses tools (mainly sharp slabs and cutting tools) to the first hand axes more than 1 million years ago, and the deliberate use of fire by our prehistoric ancestors 1 million years ago , in a layer deep in the cave.
In addition, Wonderwerk contained a full range of fire remnants: burned bones, sediment, and tools, as well as the presence of ashes.
As lead author Professor Ron Shaar of the HU Institute of Earth Sciences explains:
We can now confidently say that our human ancestors were making simple stone tools within Wonderwerk Cave 1.8 million years ago. Wonderwerk is unique among the ancient Olduvayense sites, a type of tool that was first found 2.6 million years ago in East Africa, precisely because it is a cave and not an open-air event.