A remarkable number of large cutting tools from the Paleolithic Period were identified and handed over to the Ephorate of Antiquities of Lesvos by retired doctor and researcher Vassilis Koumarelas.
Koumarelas handed over to authorities chisels, cutters, trihedrals, scrapers, pickaxes, blades, flakes, cores and products of their division, which he located and collected from the shores of the coastal zone south of the city of Mytilene, where he swims each summer.
It is recalled that in recent years, archaeological research has been carried out in Lisvori, as a number of tools, hand trowels, scrapers, etc., dating back up to 500-700 thousand years have been found.
Commissioner at the Antiquities Ephorate Pavlos Triantafyllidis who was handed over the tools told state broadcaster ERT: “These are important findings which will be evaluated by a committee that will be set up, as planned. Sections will be used to examine whether these are findings brought from the sea or whether it is indeed a Paleolithic site. In any case, these are important findings.”
In a post Koumarelas note “the numerous techniques, their variety and the fact that the specific swimming beaches were formed in 1981 by throwing rubble from the earthworks of the southern extension of the Mytilene Airport, allow the hypothesis to be valid , that there was an important Palaeolithic settlement in the area of Kratigos.”
Probably similar and contemporary to the one in the Rhodaphnidia of Lisbori, excavated by the Professor of Prehistoric Archeology of the Department of History and Archeology of the University of Crete, Nena Galanidou, and dated to the Lower or Early Paleolithic Era.
Stone carvings of the Acheulian technical tradition
If Koumarelas findings turn out to be contemporary with those excavated 10 years ago by Nena Galanidou in Rodafnidia in Lesvos about 50 kilometers from Kratigo, these will also be examples of stone carving of the Achelian technical tradition, which for the first time were found in south-eastern Europe, that is in Rodafnidia and now also in Kratigo.
According to Nena Galanidou “it is about the longest-lasting technological conquest of the human race, as it survives for one and a half million years. And it is she who will accompany the ancestral species of prehistoric man in their first exit from Africa and in the conquest of Eurasia. In other words, it is the most ancient technology used by the first inhabitants of the Aegean on the island, in which nomadic beings from the opposite coasts pass through strips of land that appear from time to time when the sea level of the Aegean basin falls.
In other words, the excavation feeds the debate on the early colonization of Europe and the migrations in Eurasia with archaeological material, stratified and dated with absolute and relative methods. And it highlights today’s Aegean as a space that connected the southern Balkan Peninsula with Anatolia.”
The name “Acheulean” taken from the name of a site named Saint-Acheul, near Amiens in northern France, and is used to refer to a range of Lower Paleolithic tool-making traditions found widely across Afro-Eurasia.
The typical tool is a general-purpose hand-ax. A hand-ax is a core tool made by removing a relatively small number of flakes (which may be separately utilized for other purposes) from a fist-sized stone, producing a tool that is slightly heavier and rather blunt on one end, but chipped to be sharp on the other end.
The tools are associated with later forms than Homo erectus.