Meaning of Acheulian in English:


Pronunciation /əˈʃuːlɪən/


(also Acheulean)
  • Relating to or denoting the main Lower Palaeolithic culture in Europe (preceding the Mousterian), represented by hand-axe industries, and dated to about 1,500,000–150,000 years ago.

    See also Abbevillian

    ‘the earliest deposits are the remains of an encampment by Acheulian communities’
    • ‘These people are best represented by their distinctive pear-shaped flint or stone handaxes, so-called Acheulian handaxes, of which several thousand have been found in Britain to date.’
    • ‘It is here also that pear-shaped bifacially worked handaxes that have come to characterize an Acheulean tradition now recognized throughout Africa and the Old World have been found in considerable quantity.’
    • ‘Colonizations at this later time were range expansions that may reflect the adaptive changes in human populations marked by the Acheulean industry, which first appears abruptly in eastern Africa some 1.4 MYA.’
    • ‘The earliest hominid tools that appear to be part of a standardized tool-making tradition were discovered in the same region: hand axes related to the Acheulean culture.’
    • ‘The Grotte du Lazaret has been known since the early C19; recent scientific excavations there have produced the vestigial remains of an Acheulean shelter, along with abundant stone tools and food remains.’


(also Acheulean)
the Acheulian
  • The period of the main Lower Palaeolithic culture in Europe, preceding the Mousterian.

    • ‘pollen shows that plants favouring a cooler and damper climate were present in the late Acheulian’


Early 20th century from French Acheuléen, from St-Acheul near Amiens in northern France, where objects from this culture were found.