Gesher Benot Ya'akov

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Site type:
Unknown, Cave
Site function:
33.01, 35.63

Archaeological excavations at the prehistoric Gesher Benot Ya'aqov site have revealed evidence of human habitation in the area, from as early as 750,000 years ago. Archaeologists from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem claim that the site provides evidence of "advanced human behavior" half a million years earlier than has previously been estimated as possible. Their report describes a layer at the site belonging to the Acheulian (a culture dating to the Lower Palaeolithic, at the very beginning of the Stone Age), where numerous stone tools, animal bones and plant remains have been found. According to the archaeologists Paul Pettitt and Mark White, the site has produced the earliest widely accepted evidence for the use of fire, dated approximately 790,000 years ago. A Tel-Aviv University study found remains of a huge carp fish cooked with the use of fire at the site 780,000 years ago.