Paleolithic site

Abandoned Paleolithic site in need of permanent center for research

Iranian archaeologist Seyyed Milad Hashemi has urged the need for establishing a permanent research center at the Paleolithic site of Mirak located in Semnan province.

Paleolithic site
Paleolithic site

“It is of great importance to set up a research center at Mirak archaeological site, which is the oldest heritage site in Iran and the first open-air Paleolithic site in the country,” IRNA quoted Iranian archaeologist Seyyed Milad Hashemi as saying on Wednesday.

The establishment of a research base in Mirak will contribute significantly to the development of studies in this area, he noted.

There have been several articles about Mirak in prestigious English-language academic journals, and the site is well known worldwide, he explained.

Due to its global importance, this ancient site should be seriously considered by all related organizations in Semnan, he added.

Mirak that is situated on the northern edge of the Iranian Central Desert was once to Stone Age men either as a tool-making workshop or as a seasonal camp. Excavations began in Mirak in 1992.

Mirak constitutes one of the largest open-air lithics scatters in the region, consisting of eight natural mounds.

From a chronological point of view, Mirak holds the longest period of settlement in the Middle Paleolithic era (about 250,000-40,000 years ago) as well as the New Paleolithic era (about 40,000-18,000 years ago). It is also known for carrying evidence that attests to the presence of the Neanderthal man of the Middle Paleolithic, a period dating back to 40 to 50 thousand years ago.