Wednesday, 26. June 2019, 17:30

Exploring the Neanderthal and Modern Human Occupation of Central and Eastern Europe

Philip R. Nigst (University of Cambridge, Department of Archaeology)

Modern humans dispersed into Europe and replaced Neanderthals between 50,000 and 40,000 years ago. However, the precise timing and climatic context of this dispersal are heavily debated. Additionally, the archaeological record of Neanderthals and modern humans shows some profund differences suggesting stark contrasts in the behaviour of the two species. My research focuses on the variability of both Neanderthal and modern human adaptations and responses to changing climate and environment from a long-term perspective, i.e over the last 250,000 years. Here, I will present first results from recently conducted fieldwork, which is aimed at generating new data on the environmental and climatic context of Neanderthal and modern human occupation in Central and Eastern Europe. I will use these data to explore change and variability in the Middle and Upper Palaeolithic of Europe and examine the driving factors behind the patterns of occupation and behaviour.