Pre-ceramic Neolithic A

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The old Orient
The city gate of Nimrud
Timeline based on calibrated C 14 data
Epipalaeolithic 12000-9500 BC Chr.
Pre-ceramic Neolithic 9500-6400 BC Chr.
PPNA 9500-8800 BC Chr.
PPNB 8800-7000 BC Chr.
PPNC 7000-6400 BC Chr.
Ceramic Neolithic 6400-5800 BC Chr.
Umm Dabaghiyah culture 6000-5800 BC Chr.
Hassuna culture 5800-5260 BC Chr.
Samarra culture 5500-5000 BC Chr.
Transition to the Chalcolithic 5800-4500 BC Chr.
Halaf culture 5500-5000 BC Chr.
Chalcolithic 4500-3600 BC Chr.
Obed time 5000-4000 BC Chr.
Uruk time 4000-3100 / 3000 BC Chr.
Early Bronze Age 3000-2000 BC Chr.
Jemdet Nasr time 3000-2800 BC Chr.
Early dynasty 2900 / 2800-2340 BC Chr.
Battery life 2340-2200 BC Chr.
New Sumerian / Ur-III period 2340-2000 BC Chr.
Middle Bronze Age 2000-1550 BC Chr.
Isin Larsa Period / Ancient Assyrian Period 2000–1800 BC Chr.
Old Babylonian time 1800–1595 BC Chr.
Late Bronze Age 1550-1150 BC Chr.
Checkout time 1580-1200 BC Chr.
Central Assyrian Period 1400-1000 BC Chr.
Iron age 1150-600 BC Chr.
Isin II time 1160-1026 BC Chr.
Neo-Assyrian time 1000-600 BC Chr.
Neo-Babylonian Period 1025-627 BC Chr.
Late Babylonian Period 626-539 BC Chr.
Achaemenid period 539-330 BC Chr.
Years according to the middle chronology (rounded)

The Pre-Ceramic Neolithic A is the oldest section of the Pre-Ceramic Neolithic (abbreviated PPNA, after English Pre-Pottery Neolithic A ) in the Middle East. That of Kathleen Kenyon based on the stratigraphy of Jericho section defined refers to a epipaläolithische (also protoneolithische ) and early Neolithic period 9500-8800 v. In the Levant and in the northern part of the Fertile Crescent , in which the manufacture of clay pots was not yet known.

Kenyon assumed that “efficient cultivation must have already existed”, since research at that time still assumed that hunters and gatherers would live under very insecure and poorly productive economic conditions. The assignment to the Neolithic cultures was therefore purely hypothetical . Today we know that nomadic hunting and gathering brought less effort and greater security from food shortages than the early cultivation of grain. In the A-horizon of the pre-ceramic Neolithic, people still lived largely wildly, according to today's knowledge, while agriculture was only a seasonal "experimental field". In this respect, the term PPN-A has no longer been used as a cultural name since 1988 , but only for the time horizon ( three-period system ) .

Material culture

But there are human and animal figures made of clay, vessels were made from plaster of paris , stone and burnt lime ( vaiselles blanches , white ware ). Plant cultivation and domestic animal husbandry were in the early stages. Round houses with terrazzo floors are typical. The following period is called Pre-Pottery Neolithic B .

A distinction is made between several regional forms such as Sultania (Palestine), Aswadia (region around Damascus ) and Mureybetia (Middle Euphrates ).

Lithic inventory

  • El-Khiam peaks
  • bifacial silex axes (tranchet-axes)
  • Aswad tips

Important sites

El-Khiam spearhead.

The term is also used for the pre-ceramic Neolithic Anatolia , a practice criticized by Rosenberg and Erim-Özdoğan.


  • Ofer Bar-Yosef: The PPNA in the Levant - an overview. In: Paléorient 15/1, 1989, pp. 57-63.
  • Jacques Cauvin: The birth of the Gods and the origins of agriculture. Cambridge 2000, ISBN 0521651352 .
  • Kate Santon: Archeology, The Most Significant Findings of Man. Parragon, Cologne 2008, ISBN 978-1-4075-0662-3 .

Individual evidence

  1. in the Levant
  2. a b c d in southern Mesopotamia
  3. a b c in northern Mesopotamia
  4. ^ Kuijt, Ian, Finlayson, B .: Evidence for food storage and predomestication granaries 11,000 years ago in the Jordan Valley. In: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 106/27, 2009, 10966. doi : 10.1073 / pnas.0812764106
  5. Marion Benz: The Neolithization in the Middle East . Ex oriente, second, hardly changed edition, Berlin 2008. ISBN 3-9804241-6-2 . pdf version , pp. 31-36.
  6. Michael Rosenberg, Aslı Erim-Özdoğan: The Neolithic in Southeastern Anatolia. In: Gregory McMahon, Sharon Steadman (Eds.): The Oxford Handbook of Ancient Anatolia, 10,000-323 BCE. Oxford University Press, Online Publication Date: Oxford Nov 2012 doi : 10.1093 / oxfordhb / 9780195376142.013.0006 .