1. The British Isles, Sicily, Cyprus, etc. are connected to the mainland and the Black Sea is a lake – this tells us that the map shows a period before the end of the last Ice Age, i.e. before roughly 12,000 years ago. I doubt that the red areas simply show human settlement because there must have been people in Anatolia during the Ice Age. Maybe red shows the areas of spread of a particular paleolithic culture with dark red indicating that culture’s centers and hotbeds. White in the upper portion of the map obviously shows the extent of year-round ice cover. The areas that were submerged once the ice melted are in light yellow.


  2. While there are a number of odd things about the geographic distribution of this trait/characteristic/whatever, the one that strikes me as the strangest is that it encompasses Israel and possibly Lebanon.
    I’m going to guess that this trait/etc. is something genetic, and NOT something cultural, historic or linguistic.



  3. @peter – “I’m going to guess that this trait/etc. is something genetic, and NOT something cultural, historic or linguistic.”

    well, it’s sorta genetic, but not in the sense you’re thinking of.

    i’ll offer a clue: it’s a population. (^_^)

    (edit: or i guess you could say “population/culture.” depends on how you like to think about these things.)


  4. It’s the maximum extant of one of those paleolithic stone cultures….don’t remember which one.


  5. It’s the cavemen who really liked big bottoms, and they cannot lie, that a brother can’t deny, that when a girl walks in with an itty-bitty thing, they get sprung! (look at their carvings for clarification)


  6. It’s interesting that modern europeans don’t seem to be descended primarily from these people though (the Aurignacians) but rather 50% from middle-eastern neolithic farmers and 50% from siberian hunter-gatherers who ranged from france to the bering straits. Although you could just tell that from looking at most people. Or maybe that’s not the exact scenario; back to the books!!


  7. Per capita wine consumption ( or production?) that’s why the Muslim countries aren’t included despite lots of grapes


  8. ok! and the solution IS…


    …the distribution of the aurignacian or cro-magnon culture [see map with labels here]!

    a virtual pat on the back to naturalismo and spaghetti meatball (now i’m hungry…) who got it right! and to glossy for displaying some excellent map reading/reasoning skillz. (^_^)

    “something to do with the neolithic” is an interesting guess, i think, ’cause it sure looks like it could be something to do with the neolithic. which is interesting, i think.

    A for Effort for “feral cats” — very, very close! (~_^)


  9. This is bullshit, why would it be spread all over Europe and then that isolated spot in Israel? Someone has been faking evidence.


  10. It is the presence of Aurignacian culture in the Levant that makes the distribution appear Neolithic as there is evidence linking the Cardial to the Levant (the Byblos culture.) The Cardial did not, however, extend so far inland.

    Nonetheless in lithics as an craniometry, typology has its problems as well as its genuine usefulness and different authors have slightly different opinions as to what to include in the Aurignacian culture – for example, some people identify an Aurignacian presence in the Caucasus region, though this is disputed. The discontinuity shown on the map may reflect an absence of evidence from ie. Asia Minor, else it may be an artifact of the subjective judgement of different authorities as to what is truly Aurignacian, or simply Aurignacian-like. A third possibility is the use of sailing craft by Europeoid people living around the Mediterranean during the Early Upper Paleolithic .


  11. Yeah right, the Cro Magnons sailed around Asia Minor so they could live in THE ONLY DEMOCRACY IN THE MIDDLE EAST! How credulous are you?


  12. Of course those hot spots are not necessarily areas of greater population they may be only areas of more favorable preservation, but still as I look at the map I must wonder , “What’s wrong with Portugal?”. Is it because Portugal is particularly inhospitable?

    I just finished reading a novel about the Peninsula War fought in Portugal. It sounded like a wasteland but that was after the Brits had had a scorched earth policy and the French burnt, pillaged, and destroyed what little was left. But 41,000 years ago what would have kept the Cro-Magnon from spreading to the Atlantic coast? No Alps, no ice.


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