Archaeologists find 500,000 years old ‘never seen before’ wooden structures in Zambia
500,000-year-old wooden structures were found by archaeologists in Zambia. These ‘never seen before’ structures are the earliest signs of wooden tools.
A group of archaeologists have found 500,000-year-old wooden structures in Zambia. In an article published in the Nature Journal on Wednesday, the archaeologists mentioned that these structures and tools were found at the Kalambo Falls in Zambia and date back to over 476,000 years ago.
The findings have “no known parallels” wrote the scientists in the article. The discovery of these findings changes the understanding of what humans were capable of in the early times, they added.
In an interview with BBC on Wednesday, Larry Barham, the lead researcher and a professor at the University of Liverpool said, “They used their intelligence, imagination, and skills to create something they'd never seen before, something that had never previously existed.”
Early people may have built these constructions to raise themselves off the soggy ground. They demonstrate the usage of wooden tools like digging sticks and the construction of platforms and constructions out of massive tree trunks by early humans.
In the article, the scientists stated that they used luminescence dating- a technique involving measuring the amount of radioactivity absorbed by the rocks over millennia- in order to determine the age of their findings.
Wet conditions at the Kalambo Falls contributed to the rare discovery as usually, wooden materials perish unless they are preserved in unusual conditions like waterlogged areas.
These structures, according to study co-author and University of Aberystwyth professor Geoff Duller, even predate the earliest Homo sapien fossils.
This has led to confusion among the researchers as to which ancient human species were the ones who created these findings.
It was in 2019 when the first discovery of these wooden structures was made.
Archaeological discoveries like these give us an insight into the earlier world of ancient humans and their capabilities where they came up with the ideas of such structures and tools to make living easier in historic times.
Last year was celebratory in terms of archaeological findings where the earliest known human amputation was discovered along with the discovery of a lost city in Iraq.