Unveiling Ancient Mysteries: Saudi Arabian Lava Tube Reveals 7,000-Year Human Habitation

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Unveiling Ancient Mysteries: Saudi Arabian Lava Tube Reveals 7,000-Year Human Habitation

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In a groundbreaking discovery, scientists from Australia’s Griffith University have uncovered evidence of human habitation spanning over 7,000 years within a lava tube in Saudi Arabia. This remarkable find sheds new light on the lives of early desert dwellers and offers a glimpse into the region’s rich pastoral history.

Lava tubes, natural underground passages formed by volcanic eruptions, have long intrigued researchers. However, until now, they have not been extensively studied archaeologically in Saudi Arabia. The site, known as Umm Jirsan, presents a treasure trove of artifacts, including rock art, stone tools, and animal bones, painting a vivid picture of ancient human activities.

Led by Professor Michael Petraglia, Director of ARCHE, the research team’s comprehensive study marks a significant milestone in understanding the region’s prehistoric past. The findings reveal repeated phases of human occupation from the Neolithic to the Bronze Age, highlighting the site’s importance as a vital waypoint along pastoral routes.

Matthew Stewart, the lead researcher, emphasizes the role of Umm Jirsan as a hub for cultural exchange and trade, linking key oases and facilitating connections between ancient communities. Supported by Saudi authorities, this initiative promises to revolutionize our understanding of the Middle East’s ancient history and enrich our knowledge of human activity in the region.

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