Andy's Wiki
Prehistoric Scratchpad

Cave in Greece with continuous human inhabitants for 50,000 years that includes that transition from Neanderthal to Modern Human occupation and hunter gatherers to agricultural lifestyles.


Earliest History[]

The limestone rock formation has been dated to the Upper Cretaceous Period, 135-65 Million Years ago.

Neanderthals started inhabiting the cave as early as 135,000 years ago, as determined by dating ash.

100,000 Years Ago[]

This cave was inhabited by Neanderthals.

In Between History[]

Footprints of Neanderthal children were preserved in ash, dated to about 46000 years ago. Neanderthals went extinct about 40,000 years ago, and vacated the premise some time before then.

Modern Humans settled the cave as they arrived to Europe. The humans built a stone wall near the entrance to the cave at the height of the ice age 23,000 years ago, perhaps to help keep out the cold winds. This is the oldest known modern man-made structure currently known. Evidence for agriculture, 10,000 years earlier than it was known from elsewhere, was also found from around this time.

10,000 Years Ago[]

The cave was inhabited by pre-agriculture hunter gatherer homo sapiens.

Later History[]

Two humans were buried in the cave in Mesolithic burial context in the 7th-8th Centuries BC. One of them was named "Dawn" in modern times and would go on to have a facial reconstruction performed.

Modern History[]

The cave has been used into modern times. It was last used by a shepherd to keep his sheep warm. Excavations began in 1987. The site was opened to the public in 2010, but then closed due to fears of avalanches.


The cave is located in Thessaly, Greece.

Theopetra Cave Web Pages[]

Theopetra Cave In the News[]

Footprints in Cave (1991+)[]

Radiocarbon Dating Reveals Occupation up to 50,000 years ago (2001)[]

Oldest Man Made Structure Found and Earliest Agriculture (Mar 2010)[]

Theopetra Open to the Public (2010)[]

Re-Creation of 9000 Year Old Teen Girl's Face (Jan 2018)[]


Google Earth[]