Rather than chipping flakes off a stone to create a tool, Levallois techniques work on the stone so it is the flakes themselves that become the tools. This enables several tools to be made from a single stone.
Until recently, it seemed that the Levallois revolution didn’t spread east to places like China until much later – about 40,000 years ago – but that idea is now being questioned. Bo Li at the University of Wollongong, Australia, and his colleagues have just confirmed that Levallois-style stone tools recovered from Guanyindong cave in south China are between 160,000 and 170,000 years old. Colin Barras, “Complex stone tools in China may re-write our species’ ancient history” at New Scientist
Interesting that Barras uses the term “ancient history” in describing the find’s significance. As more and more blanks are filled in, evolution becomes more of a history and less of a theory.
Here’s a guess: More light will be shed on some questions but many popular ones will recede in importance. If, for example, someone wants to claim that early man’s brain was shaped by sexual jealousy, well, it’s an opinion the commentator is entitled to but it won’t really have the same status as a trove of newly discovered artifacts. It will be more like having a similar Big Theory about the Sumerians or the Biblical patriarchs.
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See also: Stone tools found in Saudi Arabia from 300,000 years ago
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Stone tools confirmed from 3.4 mya?
Stone tools now dated to 3.3 million years ago