Around the World September 1, 2011


JORDAN: At Wadi Faynan, excavations of a site belonging to the Pre-Pottery Neolithic A culture suggest that the first buildings weren't necessarily homes or ritual spaces—but rather community centers for shared work. An oval-shaped mud building at the site, which dates to over 11,000 years ago, had mortars set into the floor, perhaps to process cultivated wild plants. Archaeologists believe there was little distinction between domestic and ritual spaces. Such divisions would come later, alongside the advent of agriculture.

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