Prehistoric food processors

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A study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has pushed back agriculture in China by 12,000 years. The roots of agriculture are traditionally traced to tools used to grind seeds in the Middle East around 23,000 year ago. Now research led by Li Liu, Stanford University’s professor of Chinese archaeology, has found that such tools were also being used in northern China. Focusing on a c.23,000-year-old site in the middle of the Yellow River region, Liu identified grinding stones by wear patterns and starch grain residues on their surfaces.

This article is an extract from the full article published in World Archaeology Issue 59. Click here to subscribe

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