Flint mining in prehistory recorded by in situ-produced cosmogenic 10Be

G. Verri, Ran Barkai, C. Bordeanu, Abraham Gopher, M. Hass, A. Kaufman, P. Kubik, E. Montanari, M. Paul, A. Ronen, S. Weiner, E. Boaretto*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The development of mining to acquire the best raw materials for producing stone tools represents a breakthrough in human technological and intellectual development. We present a new approach to studying the history of flint mining, using in situ-produced cosmogenic 10Be concentrations. We show that the raw material used to manufacture flint artifacts ≈300,000 years old from Qesem Cave (Israel) was most likely surface-collected or obtained from shallow quarries, whereas artifacts of the same period from Tabun Cave (Israel) were made of flint originating from layers 2 or more meters deep, possibly mined or quarried by humans.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7880-7884
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number21
StatePublished - 21 May 2004


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