The Altai region of Siberia was inhabited for parts of the Pleistocene by at least two archaic hominin groups—Denisovans and Neandertals. Denisova Cave uniquely contains stratified deposits with the skeletal and genetic remains of both hominins, artefacts made from stone and other materials, and a range of animal and plant remains. The site chronology is based largely on radiocarbon ages for fragments of bone and charcoal up to 50,000 years old, with older ages of equivocal reliability estimated from thermoluminescence and palaeomagnetic analyses of sediments and genetic analyses of hominin DNA. In this talk, I will present the stratigraphic sequences in Denisova Cave, discuss the new chronology for the Pleistocene deposits and associated remains from optical dating of the cave sediments, and a reconstruction of the environmental context to hominin occupation from around 350,000 to 20,000 years ago.


Dr Zenobia Jacobs, University of Wollongong.

Zenobia Jacobs is Professor and ARC Future Fellow in the Centre for Archaeological Science and the School of Earth of Environmental Sciences at the University of Wollongong, as well as a chief investigator in the ARC Centre of Excellence for Australian Biodiversity and Heritage (CABAH). Her background and training is in Archaeology and the Earth Sciences. Over the past two decades she has helped pioneer technical developments in optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating of single grains of sand buried at geological and archaeological sites. She uses OSL dating as a tool to glean new clues about the evolutionary history of Homo sapiens and their interactions with other human groups around the world.


About Archaeology Working Papers

The Working Papers in Archaeology seminar series provides a forum for dissemination of archaeological research and ideas amongst UQ archaeology students and staff. All students are invited to attend the series and postgraduate students, from honours upwards, are invited to present their research. The aim is to provide opportunities for students, staff and those from outside UQ, to present and discuss their work in an informal environment. It is hoped that anyone interested in current archaeological directions, both within and outside the School and University, will be able to attend and contribute to the series.