sábado, 23 de noviembre de 2013

When hunter met farmer (Poland)

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.
Research on the archaeological site in Dąbki can provide important insight into the changes that took place during the period towards the end of the absorption economy and into the beginning of the productive economy. Dąbki, seems to be the place where communities with very different cultural and economic traditions came into direct contact.

Expanding agricultural tradition

The expansion of agricultural communities can be seen in the northern part of the North European Plain from mid sixth millennium BCE. Then, stable settlement of farmers appeared from the Paris basin to Ukraine.
“This colonisation, however, did not cover the lowlands of northern Europe and the Baltic Sea region, still inhabited by groups practising an economy based on gathering and hunting. It was not until the middle of the fourth millennium BCE, when farmers appeared in these areas, so the Dąbki site is an extraordinary mystery”, explained Kabaciński.
The first farmers in today’s Poland settled in the areas where they found fertile soil, including the area of Kujawy from the mid sixth millennium BCE. According to the researchers, that was where many of the vessels discovered in Dąbki were made.
The researchers emphasise that the discovered vessels are very well made. Dr. Agnieszka Czekaj-Zastawny, the project archaeologist working on ceramic imports said, “This is high quality thin-walled pottery. Interestingly, some of the products also come from areas west of the Oder” .
“Dąbki is undoubtedly the place of large scale exchange of goods. People probably arrived there from distant parts, crossing distances of a few hundred kilometres. Or was it the result of expeditions of local communities? It is difficult to clearly determine”, commented Prof. Kabaciński . However, ceramic vessels coming from the area of present-day Hungary are almost certainly the result of the work of intermediaries, since it is difficult to believe that the inhabitants of that area ventured so far.
People of Dąbki probably offered farmers antler products, furs, objects made of bone and amber. The design of some of the objects found on Neolithic sites suggests the assumption is possible.
The current results of the international team have been published in the Journal of Field Archaeology Vol. 38, 2013

Source: PAP – Science and Scholarship in Poland www.naukawpolsce.pap.pl

Source: Past Horizons: http://www.pasthorizonspr.com/index.php/archives/11/2013/when-hunter-met-farmer

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