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Title: Vegetation history and climatic fluctuations on a transect along the Dead Sea west shore and impact on past societies over the last 3500 years.
Authors: Neumann, FH
Leroy, SAG
Advisors: Kagan, EJ
Baruch, U
Keywords: Holocene;Israel;Palynology;Vegetation transect
Issue Date: 2010
Publisher: Elsevier
Citation: Journal of Arid Environments, 74 (7): 2010 pp. 756 - 764
Abstract: This study represents the vegetation history of the last 3500 years and conducts an analysis of the climatic fluctuations on a 75 km long transect on the western Dead Sea shore. Palynological and sedimentological data are available from six cores near Mount Sedom, Ein Boqueq, and Ein Gedi and from outcrops near Ze'elim and Ein Feshkha. The comparison of the pollen data with the lake levels shows synchronous trends. During the Middle Bronze Age, Iron Age and Hellenistic to Byzantine Period the high lake level of the Dead Sea signals an increase in precipitation. Contemporaneously, values of cultivated plants indicate an increase in agriculture. Lake level is low during the Late Bronze Age, within the Iron Age and at the end of the Byzantine period, indicating dry periods when all pds show a decrease of cultivated plants. Forest regeneration led by drought-resistant pines is observed in all pollen diagrams (pds) following the agricultural decline in the Byzantine period and, in the pds near Ein Boqeq, Ze'elim and Ein Feshkha, during the late Iron Age. The modern vegetation gradient is reflected in the palaeo-records: a stronger expansion of Mediterranean vegetation and cultivated plants in the northern sites is recognisable.
ISSN: 0140-1963
Appears in Collections:Institute for the Environment

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