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Jean M
11-22-2013, 09:01 PM
When hunter met farmer
http://www.pasthorizonspr.com/index.php/archives/11/2013/when-hunter-met-farmer

Well-illustrated article from Past Horizons, translated from the Polish article: Dąbki - tam, gdzie spotkali się łowcy z rolnikami: http://naukawpolsce.pap.pl/aktualnosci/news,397767,dabki---tam-gdzie-spotkali-sie-lowcy-z-rolnikami.html


Since 2003, a German-Polish team of archaeologists has been carrying out excavations at the prehistoric bog site of Dąbki 9 on the Polish Baltic coast near Koszalin. The animal bones recovered during the course of this work are expected to provide valuable insights into the appearance of the first domestic animals in the Baltic Region and changes in the natural environment during the 6th millennium BCE.

International multidisciplinary study

The study is a Polish-German project led by Prof. Jacek Kabaciński of the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology PAS in Poznań and Prof. Thomas Terberger of the University of Greifswald and has already provided data that has excited researchers studying the Mesolithic and the Neolithic period in Europe.
The main goals of the multidisciplinary project was verifying the J. Ilkiewicz results after the first discovery of the site in the 1970s; site stratigraphy; chronology; origins of ceramic appearance including the character of imports from the area of the Lowland early Neolithic cultures and the exciting presence of domesticated cattle and pig within Late Mesolithic contexts. So far, several hundred square metres of terrace, beach zone and peat-bog have been excavated and documented.

The site was inhabited between 5100 to 3600 BCE and contains the first locally made ceramic objects – vessels with pointed bottoms – from layers dated to c. 4800 BCE. Originally, the settlement was located on an island in a lake near the Baltic Sea.

A distant trade – a cautious approach

“In the settlement layers we also found fragments of about 70 pottery pieces attributed to a variety of Neolithic agricultural archaeological cultures, such as the Funnel Beaker and Lengyel culture, but also vessels imported from the Hungarian Plain, a distance of over 1000 km (so-called Bodrogkeresztúr culture). Yet the most important thing we were able to establish was the fact that the community that owned these vessels did not grow crops or breed animals” – said Prof. Kabaciński.

In the area of the southern Baltic coasts Dąbki is a unique site as it is the only known Mesolithic settlement with a collection of artefacts that shows a connection to the farmers from central and southern Europe. Because of this, archaeologists had to approach to the analysis of discovered historical objects with great caution.

“We believe that Mesolithic hunters-gatherers, the people inhabiting these areas 7-6 thousand years ago, carried out an extensive exchange of goods with farmers arriving in northern Europe” , said Prof. Kabaciński.


The current results of the international team have been published:
Agnieszka Czekaj-Zastawny, Jacek Kabaciński, Thomas Terberger, Jolanta Ilkiewicz, Relations of Mesolithic hunter-gatherers of Pomerania (Poland) with Neolithic cultures of central Europe, Journal of Field Archaeology Vol. 38, Number 3, (July 2013), pp. 195-209. http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/maney/jfa/2013/00000038/00000003/art00001