Pub. date: 2006 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412952453 | Print ISBN: 9780761930297 | Online ISBN: 9781412952453| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Christopher David Kreger
Zafarraya is a Mousterian site located within the El Boquete de Zafarraya (The Zafarraya Pass) of the Sierra Tejeda Mountains in the northeastern portion of the Malagá province of southern Spain, near the border of the town of Alcaucin. Five layers of archaeological material typed to the Mousterian were identified during initial excavations (1980–1983) by Cecilio Barroso-Ruiz and P. Medina Lara. An expanded excavation of the site by Barroso-Ruiz and Jean-Jacques Hublin in 1992 provided human and faunal remains, as well as typical Mousterian artifacts characterized by classic Levallois techniques. Hominid material recovered from the site includes one nearly complete mandible as well as isolated teeth and postcranial fragments. Zafarraya is notable for its secure dating of Neandertal occupation to approximately 33 kya—and likely occupation as late as 27 kyr—providing an example of one of the latest known surviving Neandertal populations. The most diagnostic specimen from the site is a ...