349 pages, 67 colour & 107 b/w photos and illustrations, 67 colour tables
This edited volume describes the geology, stratigraphy, anthropology, archaeology, dating, taphonomy, palaeobotany, palaeontology and palaeoecology of Azokh caves. The chapters review exhaustively the key recent research on this limestone karstic site, which is located near the village of the same name in the region of Nagorno Karabagh in the south-eastern end of the Lesser Caucasus. The site is significant due to its geographic location at an important migratory crossroad between Africa and Eurasia. These caves contain an almost complete sedimentary sequence of the transition between H. heidelbergensis and H. neanderthalensis continuing to later Pleistocene and Holocene stratified sediment infill, affected by an erosional disconformity at the main excavation site. The site is also important due to the discovery of Neanderthal remains in addition to the Middle Pleistocene hominin remains during a previous phase of excavation work. At the heart of Azokh Cave and the Transcaucasian Corridor is the matter of how this site relates to human evolution.
- Introduction: Azokh Caves and the Transcaucasian corridor
- Stratigraphy and Sedimentology of Azokh Caves, South Caucasus
- Geology and Geomorphology of Azokh Caves
- Lithic Assemblages Recovered from Azokh 1
- Azokh Cave Hominin Remains
- The New Material of Large Mammals from Azokh and Comments on the Older Collections
- Rodents, Lagomorphs and Insectivores from Azokh Cave
- Bats from Azokh Caves
- Amphibians and Squamate Reptiles from Azokh 1
- Taphonomy and Site Formation of Azokh 1
- Bone Diagenesis at Azokh Caves
- Coprolites, Paleogenomics and Bone Content Analysis
- Palaeoenvironmental Context of Coprolites and Plant Microfossils from Unit II, Azokh 1
- Charcoal Remains from Azokh 1: Preliminary Results
- Paleoecology of Azokh 1
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Dr. Yolanda Fernández-Jalvo is a researcher at the Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales (CSIC), Spain in the Department of Paleobiology.
Dr. Tania King is co-Director with Dr. Fernandez-Jalvo of the Azokh Project and afiliated to the Blandford Museum, UK.
Dr. Levon Yepiskoposyan is Head of the Human Genetics Group at the Institute of Molecular Biology in the National Academy of Sciences, Armenia.
Dr. Peter Andrews is a research scientist in the Department of Palaeontology, The Natural History Museum, London.