Blombos Cave is an archaeological site located in Blombosfontein Nature Reserve, about 300 km east of Cape Town on the Southern Cape coastline, South Africa. The cave contains Middle Stone Age deposits currently dated at between c. 100,000 and 70,000 years before present. The cave site was first excavated in 1991 and field work has been conducted there on a regular basis since 1997 – and is ongoing.
More than 70 marine shell beads of the sea snail species Nassarius kraussianus have been found in the M1 and Upper M2 phases at Blombos Cave. The beads are exclusively confined to the Still Bay occupation units, and the majority have been found in the M1 phase. It has been argued that the marine shells were deliberately pierced through the aperture, probably with a bone tool, thus creating of a small-sized perforation.
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