She also found a pattern of cut marks on other bones in the cave that suggested the humans who lived there were removing the skins of carnivores such as sand foxes, golden jackals and wildcats, for their furs. The bones of cattle-like animals showed different markings, suggesting they were processed for meat.
“I’m most excited about the skinning marks on the carnivores, because I haven’t seen this pattern described before. And my hope is that archaeologists working in much older sites also start looking for this pattern,” 彼女は言いました.
It’s challenging to figure out when the use of clothing began. It’s highly likely early humans like Neanderthals that lived in cold climates long before Homo sapiens arrived on the scene had clothing to protect themselves from the extreme weather, but there’s not much hard evidence.
Genetic studies of lice indicate that clothing lice diverged from their human head louse ancestors at least
83,000 years ago and possibly as early as
170,000 数年前, which suggests humans were wearing clothes before major migrations out of Africa
Hallett said that one of
98 400,000-year-old tools made from elephant bone and recently discovered in Italy may have been used to smooth leather
. They were likely used by Neanderthals. Eyed needles emerge in the archaeological record much later
, 約 40,000 数年前.
The bone tools from Morocco that Hallett discovered were shaped a bit like a spatula and would have been used to remove connective tissue. Similar bone tools are still used by some leather workers today, Hallett said.
“The reason people like using these tools is that they don’t pierce the skin, and so you’re left with an intact skin,” 彼女は言いました.
The bone tools were found in Contrebandiers Cave on Morocco’s Atlantic coast. Hallett said the climate 120,000 years ago would have been mild, as it is now, raising the possibility that early clothes could have been for ornamentation as well as protection. Stone Age fashionistas, anyone?
“There’s really no extreme temperatures or extreme climate conditions there in the past or today. So that makes me wonder was clothing strictly utilitarian or was it symbolic or was it a little bit of both?”