DOI：10.1126/science.aad17183 作者：Michael Balter
摘要 : 采猎者们在农耕普及前的2.5万年前就开始吃麦片了吗?这是一项来自意大利东南部一个叫Grotta Paglicci的洞穴的新研究的结论，大约32000年前，晚期旧石器时代的采猎者们曾在其中生活过。
采猎者们在农耕普及前的2.5万年前就开始吃麦片了吗?这是一项来自意大利东南部一个叫Grotta Paglicci的洞穴的新研究的结论，大约32000年前，晚期旧石器时代的采猎者们曾在其中生活过。研究人员在山洞里的一个石杵上发现了明显的燕麦粒的痕迹 ，本周的《美国科学院学报》报告说。从很多其它方面来看，这都是当时一个很典型的洞穴，里面有马壁画、人类墓葬，和石器时代的工具。然而，留在杵上的燕麦淀粉粒痕迹清楚地表明，洞穴的居民对植物的利用十分成熟，石头上同研磨技术一致的磨损痕迹支持了这一结论。此外，对燕麦粒的分析表明，在被磨成粉以前它们被加热过，应该是为了将它们干燥到和现在燕麦加工前受干燥的程度一样。研究人员补充说，尽管没有“直接证据”表明古人接着将这些燕麦粒与水混合并煮熟，但这样的过程可以得到“合理的假设”，意思是我们的祖先或许在农业问世很久之前就食用燕麦片了。
Did hunter-gatherers eat oatmeal 25,000 years before the spread of farming? That’s the implication of a new study from this cave in southeastern Italy called Grotta Paglicci, which was occupied by Upper Paleolithic hunter-gatherers about 32,000 years ago. Researchers have found significant traces of oat grains on a stone pestle found in the cave, they report this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. In many other ways, this was a typical cave of the time, complete with wall paintings of horses, human burials, and Stone Age tools. Yet the evidence from oat starch grains left on the pestle shows clearly that its inhabitants made precocious use of plants, a conclusion bolstered by traces of wear on the stone consistent with grinding. Moreover, analysis of the oat grains suggests that they were exposed to heat before being ground up, presumably to dry them much as grains are dried before being processed today. The researchers add that although there is no “direct evidence” that the grains were subsequently mixed with water and cooked, such a process can be “plausibly hypothesized”—meaning that our ancestors probably ate oatmeal long before the advent of agriculture.
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