Biota and Environment of Natural Areas

Garkovik A.V.

Ceramics of the Late Neolithic in Primorye as a historical source

Year: 2019, Number: 1, Pages: 80-100

The article is devoted to analysis of ceramic complexes of the Late Neolithic epoch, with the aim to get historical data. There are many sites of late Neolithic epoch in Primorye traditionally they are attributed to Zaisanovskaya culture. Compositions of their complexes varies. An analysis of ceramic complexes allows to distinguish several groups of sites which are considered to be variants of zaisanovskaya culture. In scientific works they have another name «sites of zaisanovskaya cultural tradition». As a result of discussion, four main cultural-chronological variants were distinguished: early zaisanovskiy (with rope decoration), khasanskiy, south-eastern, khankaiskiy. The chronology and location of the main sites, findings of cultivated crops demonstrate that there were several stages of populating of Primorye by agricultural population in the Late Neolithic epoch. In Primorye Territory late neolithic ceramics has turned to be most informative. According to researches, shape of vessels, ornament on their walls, and some details of design indicate wide spread occurrence of plaiting and wickerwork of various kinds of plant fiber. The earliest data of the production of ancient textile come from the site is situated in Chortovy Vorota Cave (Rudninskaya culture). Textile remains inclusion small fragments of mats and net, scraps of ropes and braids and also pieces of rather thin textile. According to direct dating of the textile, its age is 7480±80 years ago (SNU05-083). Ornamental decoration of vessels of this culture with rhombic and triangular imprints forming a net-shaped pattern also indicates knowledge of the plaiting. Artifacts attributed to the early stage of “Zaisanovskaya cultural tradition” (ZCT) of the Late Neolithic (5200–4700 years ago) are most informative. Ornamental compositions reproducing a braiding made by tracing, comb and rope impressions are specific for them. A small rope or thin plates braided with a cord were used as a stamp. The impressions indicate high techniques of thread and rope production. Knowledge of the plating and production of textile is demonstrated by ceramic complex of Valentin-peresheyek site dated to the first half of 3rd millennium B.C. Details of the design of top parts of vessels in shape of cornice with decoration imitating a braiding, ornamental motifs of a net and vertical zigzag indicate that had wickerwork as a model. Besides it, a number of bottoms of vessels with impressions of textile and several fragments of a vessel were found there. An anthropomorphous figure was stuck on the wall of the latter and a design of a net with rhombic cells was depicted below the figure. Wide and complex researches of Neolithic sites of ZCT in Primorye Region with use of water flotation method have made it possible to register traces of ancient agriculture in their cultural deposits. Ceramic complexes decorated with impressions of a rope correlate with early stage of agriculture associated with cultivation of hog millet (Panicum miliaceum) and oil plant (Perilla frutenscence). Late stage of ZCT identifies next stage of the agriculture in Primorye Region. Botanical data obtained in sites of this stage of ZCT allow to consider that its agriculture was based on cultivation of hog millet (P. miliaceum) and Italian millet (Setaria italica). The Late Neolithic complexes of Primorye Region have authentic data about existence, development and wide spread occurrence of the braiding, production of cords and textile in ancient times. Ceramic complexes of ZCT are indicators of existence of the agriculture in the Late Neolithic in Primorye Region. It testifies an emergence of new type of adaptation – agricultural one. It also indicates certain development of the society expressed in emergence of thin “spruce” ware and new forms of vessels. An analysis the Late Neolithic complexes of Primoria which indicate the agriculture will enable to trace main routes of migration of agricultural population.

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