Microblade remains from the Xishahe site, North China and their implications for the origin of microblade technology in Northeast Asia

Ying Guan, Xiaomin Wang, Fagang Wang, John W. Olsen, Shuwen Pei, Zhenyu Zhou, Xing Gao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Here, we discuss the earliest microblade sites in China and the development of microblade technology in greater Northeast Asia. The Xishahe site was discovered in Huliu River terrace deposits in the Nihewan Basin, North China. Chronometric dating indicates the site was first occupied ca. 29–28 ka cal BP, while the microblade remains date to about 27 ka cal BP. Xishahe has yielded some of the earliest radiocarbon dated microblade technology in China, and evidence suggests that its appearance and disappearance are positively correlated with climate change. The microblade technology identified at Xishahe is different from other, younger microblade sites in China, specifically those associated with the mature wedge-shaped core technique. Further, although the Xishahe microblade cores are well-shaped with platform preparation and could successfully produce parallel-sided flakes, the overall morphology of these cores was highly variable and lacked standardization. Obvious technological differences can be seen in microblade assemblages dating to periods before and after the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM; ca. 24–18 ka cal BP).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)38-47
Number of pages10
JournalQuaternary International
Volume535
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 10 2020

Keywords

  • Microblade technology
  • Nihewan basin
  • North China
  • Radiocarbon dating
  • Upper paleolithic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Earth-Surface Processes

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