The surprise of scientists to discover which culture built the oldest defense in the world

the oldest defense in the world: Scientists have recently dated the oldest fortified settlement built by humans and were surprised by the identity of its architects.

The fortifications were first discovered in 1987 near the Amenia River in Western Siberia, but it is only thanks to radiocarbon dating that we know how old they are.

Testing revealed that a pit house at the site, once protected by a moat, was most likely built in the late 7th century BC. In other words, it is about 8000 years old.
According to Science, later, in the 6th millennium BC, two more moats were built in this place along with several buildings, banks, and other fences.

The most important thing about these discoveries is that they challenge experts’ understanding of what our ancestors were capable of.

the oldest defense in the world
An aerial view of the Amnya river and surrounding land; bottom(Illustration by N. Golovanov, S. Krubeck & S. Juncker)

While it was previously assumed that Stone Age agricultural societies were the first to build permanent settlements along with defensive structures, the Amenia sites show that this was not the case.
An international team of archaeologists concluded that hunter-gatherer groups were behind these ancient structures, proving that societies were much more advanced than previously thought.

Tanya Schreiber, one of the researchers of the discovery, said in a statement: “Our new research shows that the inhabitants of Western Siberia lived a complex lifestyle based on the abundant resources of the taiga (swamp forest) environment.”

The prehistoric inhabitants of the Amenia River benefited from a rich ecosystem with plenty of fish, birds, elk, and reindeer to hunt.

An aerial view of the Amnya river and surrounding land; bottom: general plan of the two Amnya sites(Illustration by N. Golovanov, S. Krubeck & S. Juncker)

Once they learned how to store these resources — making decorated pottery to preserve them — they must have realized they were targets for invaders and therefore built defensive shields to protect them, Schreiber and colleagues found in a paper on They suggested their own.
About 10 Stone Age forts are known to date with pit houses surrounded by earthen walls, but none are as old as the first site of Amenia.
So far, the only similar sites we know of were created centuries later, after the dawn of agriculture.

However, this discovery refutes the notion that agriculture and animal husbandry were prerequisites for the creation of complex societies.

Scientists discover world’s oldest human-built structure, built by an extinct species

Anya, along with other examples—including the Gobekli Tepe stone cairn built about 1,100 years ago in present-day Turkey—suggest that societies did not develop from simple to complex in this linear fashion.
“The findings underscore the diversity of pathways that lead to complex social organizations,” Japheth Johnston of the Free University of Berlin wrote in an article about the landmark research.

They also highlight the importance of local environmental conditions in shaping the course of human societies.

In other words, we need to revise our grumbling and bored image of early hunter-gatherers and appreciate them.

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