Human-climate interactions since the neolithic period in Central Anatolia: Novel multi-proxy data from the Kureysler area, Kutahya, Turkey

Ocakoglu F., Cilingiroglu Ç. , Erkara I. P. , Unan S., Dincer B., Akkiraz M. S.

QUATERNARY SCIENCE REVIEWS, cilt.213, ss.1-17, 2019 (SCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi) identifier identifier


Sedimentological and paleoclimatological data from a fluvial infill retrieved from a series of cores taken across Kureysler Valley, Kutahya, western Turkey, are compared alongside evidence for an almost unbroken record of human occupation in the area since Neolithic times. Recent salvage excavations in the valley exposed settlement remains from the Early Bronze Age and Late Byzantine periods with inter fingering of archaeological and geological materials in the valley-fill, adding a wealth of information to the archaeological record in this region. Our geological data, constrained by seven radiocarbon dates from the sediment infill demonstrate that the earliest sediments were deposited during the Late Glacial (similar to 13.8 ka) under a cold and relatively dry climatic conditions with evidence of amelioration and increase in arboreal taxa from the Neolithic onwards. The occurrence of Cerealia-T and Apiaceae pollen is significant as an important indicator for anthropisation already present during the Epipaleolithic period (before 9 ka cal. BP). Also, the effects of 8.2 ka climatic event are clearly visible in our multi-proxy results. The onset of the Early Bronze Age settlements in the vicinity similar to ca. 5.2 ka BP occurred alongside a climatic switch to warmer conditions recorded by a lithological change and a positive shift in isotopic data. The 4.2 ka event, present in records related to several Early Bronze Age (EBA) sites of Anatolia is also recorded in the Kureysler Valley both in the pollen and 6180 records. In general, these results show that climate shifts occurred at the beginning and end of the EBA, as well as during the Neolithic and Chalcolithic and are to be compared with new archaeological data. (C) 2019 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.