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Pre-Historic Wadi Yabis Basin in Northern Jordan

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Wadi Yabis: Perennial wadi located in northern Jordan with a total catchment of almost 200 square kilometres. The wadi descends westward a distance of 18 kilometres or 11 miles from the hills of Jebel Ajlun at 1200 metres above sea level to the central Jordan Valley which is 300 metres below sea level. The great topographic and climatic range within this short distance results in a steep environment gradient. Most recently between 1987 and 1992 a series of intensive archaeological surveys and test excavations was conducted throughout the wadi catchment

The oldest clues of human use of the wadi are Lower [chronology debatable *] Paleolithic handaxes at least 100,000 years old. They were found at the edge of the Jordan Valley buried in wadi banks - cemented in limestone outcrops - and on the surface at flint quarries. Open-air and buried Middle Paleolithic sites are found at all elevations but particularly on ridges near the valley - at the former margin of a lake [Lisan] that filled the central Jordan Rift during the Late Pleistocene. Upper Paleolithic and Epi-Paleolithic sites are rare but their presence attests to continued use of the wadi during the dramatic climatic fluctuations of the end times of the Pleistocene .....

Article by Jonathan Mabry and Gaetano Palumbo

The History of the Ancient Near East Electronic Compendium