Lichtenstein Cave

The Lichtenstein Cave, discovered in 1972, is an archaeological cave site near Dorste, Lower Saxony, Germany with a length of 115 m (377 ft). The skeletal remains of 21 female humans and 19 males, dated to the Bronze Age, about 3,000 years ago were discovered. In addition, around 100 bronze objects (ear rings, bracelets, and finger rings) and ceramic parts from the Urnfield Culture were found.

Lichtenstein Cave
location in Germany
Lichtenstein Cave (Germany)
Locationnear Dorste
RegionLower Saxony, Germany
Coordinates51°43′28″N 10°10′27″E
Length115 m (377 ft)
PeriodsBronze Age
Associated withHomo sapiens
Site notes
Excavation dates1972

Ancient DNA Tests

Both mitochondrial DNA and Y-chromosome DNA tests were conducted on the skeletons and published by the University of Göttingen. Mitochondrial haplogroups found included 17 from H, 5 from T2, 9 from U5b and 5 from J*. Out of the 19 males represented in the cave, 15 yielded the full 12 tested STR values, with twelve showing haplotypes related to I2b2 (at least four lineages), two to R1a (probably one lineage), and one to R1b predicted haplogroups. Y-STR results are given in the table below:

Y-STR Haplotypes of the 19 male individuals[1]
HT 39339019391385a385b439389i392389ii437438ΣHg
Y1 1325161113171112112815106I2b2
Y2 1325151113171112112715103I2b2
Y3 1323141111141213132915121R1b
Y4 --(17)(11)--(11)12---101I2b2
Y5 1325151111(13)1113113014112R1a
Y6 1324161113171112112815103I2b2
nd ------------3-

() = allele unsure or assignment of an individual, nd = not determined

See also



  • Felix Schilz: Molekulargenetische Verwandtschaftsanalysen am prähistorischen Skelettkollektiv der Lichtensteinhöhle, Dissertation, Göttingen 2006.
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