Starosilia archeological site

Image - Starosilia archeological site: a skull of buried Cro-Magnon child with some Neanderthal features.

Starosilia archeological site [Старосільська стоянка; Starosilska stoianka]. A Paleolithic cave site of the Mousterian culture situated in the Crimean Mountains along the Churuk-Su River near Bakhchesarai, Crimea. Excavations in 1952–6 of approximately 250 sq m of the site uncovered two archeological strata with more than 700 flint tools of various kinds and numerous bones of wild animals (including mammoths). The site is best known for the recovery of a burial (estimated to be 35,000 to 36,000 years old) of an apparently Cro-Magnon child surrounded by Neanderthal artefacts, one of a very few such burials known worldwide. This burial is seen as evidence that for a period of time at the end of the Mousterian period Neanderthals and (modern) Cro-Magnons (Homo sapiens) not only lived in close proximity on the territory of today’s Ukraine, but that they also occasionally interbred.

[This article was updated in 2020.]

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