Scientists in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have found evidence that an advanced society existed at least 7,500 years ago in what is now the country, the official WAM news agency reported Tuesday.
According to the report, studies of a man's skeleton, discovered in March this year on Marawah Island, 70 km west of Abu Dhabi, the capital of the UAE, have revealed its great age.
The skeleton was found during excavations directed by Mark Beech, senior resident archaeologist of the Abu Dhabi Islands Archaeological Survey (ADIAS).
Archaeologists said the stone building in which he lived and was buried, and the pottery found next to him, was evidence that an organized community with building skills lived here 7,500 years ago.
During work at Site MR-11 as many as six stone buildings in a village were found. In one of them a human skeleton was entombed on a stone platform.
Preliminary studies suggest that the man was between 20 and 40 years old when he died.
The findings were bound to change perceptions about ancient civilizations along the Gulf coast, the 15 cm pot that was believed to have been made in western Iran and southern Iraq showed that the settled community had done business with neighboring peoples, said Peter Hellyer, executive director of ADIAS.
The head of the skeleton which faced eastwards showed they observed burial rituals because they believed that since the sun rises in the east it gives life, so the face should be pointed to that way.
They were not primitive. They lived a healthy life, feeding on dates, meat, fish and other seafoods. They kept domestic sheep and goats, harvested plants to feed their animals, collected mangrove and hunted dugongs and turtles among other marine mammals.
This disproves that the UAE was nothing but a group of Bedouins until oil was discovered.
Further research on the skeleton is continuing, and ADIAS plans a season of archaeological excavations at the site in March and April, WAM reported.