The natural arc of resource-rich land which forms the ‘Fertile Crescent’ of South-West Asia is regarded as the earliest centre of village-based farming in the world and has been the focus of much of our understanding of the transition from Epipalaeolithic hunter-gathers to Neolithic farmers. Beyond the Fertile Crescent is the first volume of the Azraq Project, a large-scale archaeological and palaeoenvironmental survey and excavation project undertaken between 1982 and 1989 in the ecologically diverse sub-region of the Azraq Basin in north-central Jordan: an area rich in Palaeolithic and Neolithic archaeology. Beginning with an overview to the Project aims, a detailed analysis of past and present environments and land use and the history of excavation in the Basin, Beyond the Fertile Crescent explores the geology, stratigraphy and dating of the Late Palaeolithic sites and provides a detailed description of the technology and typology of the lithic assemblages from the sites. These are then compared with those from the wider Levant, in order to explore possible links between technological traditions and social groups in order to understand the evidence for settlement strategies across the region.
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