|Seminar and Symposium at KURCPI
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Research Seminar No.198, 8 July 2019
16:30-, The Interdivisional Education and Research Building, 5th Floor
「A Research for the Origin of Human Cultures in the Ryukyu Archipelago」
(Okinawa Prefectural Museum and Art Museum)
A research about paleolithic human remains in Okinawa well developed through the excavations of Yamashita-cho cave site (Naha City) and Minatogawa site (Yaese Town) carried out from 1960s to 70s. But a big mystery was concerning to a living place and cultural remains of the palaeolithic people, because only human bones without any artificial material were found from those sites.
Our new research project that aimed at the discovery of new human fossil and paleolithic artifact was planned in 2006, and we have conducted continuous excavations of limestone caves in the southern part of Okinawa-jima Island more than ten years. As a part of the project, we started the excavation of Sakitari-do cave site (Nanjo City) in 2009. As a result, well preserved sediments dated from approximately 40,000 years ago to recent days were discovered. We found shell tools containing the world oldest fishhook, stone artifacts, animal remains, and human bones from the palaeolithic layers of the Sakitari-do cave site. These are important clue to solve the question about the origin of human culture in Okinawa. In this presentation, I report our new findings at Sakitari-do cave site and discuss the palaeolithic life styles and their chronological change in the Ryukyu archipelago.