Денисова пещера.jpg
PHOTO: Roman Petruschin 51°23'26.03"С 84°40'56.42"В

Денисова пещера находится на высоте 600 метров над уровнем моря - единственный памятник Алтая, содержащий многометровые толщи культурных отложений, своеобразный "соленый пирог", включающий более 20 культурных слоев и представляющий таким образом разные эпохи развития человечества. Денисова пещера вошла в историю археологии благодаря некоторым событиям мирового значения. Например, именно здесь был выявлен самый древний в Сибири культурный слой обитания человека эпохи палеолита возрастом 282000 лет.

Потерянное поколение.



Denisova Cave was named after an hermit, Saint Denis, in Russian called Dionisij, who lived in this cave during the second half of the 18th century. The locals call it Aju-Tasch which means bear rock. This cave is looking like a chimney, it is not very interesting from the speleologic view, but it is the most important archaeological cave of the Altai. 20 different layers with archaeological remains were excavated, the oldest layer being 300,000 years old, the youngst layers from the Middle Ages and from the Saint Dionisij. Radiocarbon dates of the Mousterian levels are between 39,000 and 46,000 years BP. The best way to visit the cave is a stay at the nearby Denis Cave Camp, which is used by the scientists working at the cave. The guided tour they provide for tours (after appointment) introduce the participants into the history of the cave and th e techniques used by the archaeologists.

Startling news from the Neanderthal Genome Project at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology may prove a watershed in the understanding of how our hominid ancestors left Africa, and just how many different human species shared our planet 40,000 years ago. The report comes from Nature, and it involves a site in the Altai mountains of Siberia called Denisova Cave (pronounced de NEE soh va). The cave has been excavated since the 1970s and it has evidence of occasional human use beginning about 125,000 years ago. Of particular interest to this study is what Siberian archaeologists call the Altai Mousterian, or Initial Upper Paleolithic levels, dated somewhere between 30,000 and 45,000 years ago (uncalibrated years before the present).

Svante Paabo