Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-768ffcd9cc-96qlp Total loading time: 0.474 Render date: 2022-12-05T04:02:28.358Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "useRatesEcommerce": false } hasContentIssue true

Article contents

Hunter-fisher-gatherer pottery production and use at the Neolithic shell-midden of Riņņukalns, Latvia

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 August 2021

Michela Spataro*
Affiliation:
Department of Scientific Research, The British Museum, London, UK
Ester Oras
Affiliation:
Institute of Chemistry, Institute of History and Archaeology, University of Tartu, Estonia
Alexandre Lucquin
Affiliation:
BioArCh, Department of Archaeology, University of York, UK
Valdis Bērziņš
Affiliation:
Institute of Latvian History, University of Latvia, Riga
*
*Author for correspondence ✉ mspataro@britishmuseum.org

Abstract

The shell-midden site of Riņņukalns in northern Latvia offers a rare opportunity to study long-term trends in ceramic production and function at a European hunter-fisher-gatherer site. Riņņukalns was occupied from the sixth millennium BC, with the midden developing from the later fourth millennium. Here, the authors discuss the chaîne opératoire and function of the Riņņukalns material, showing that pottery was used in both the pre-midden and midden phases primarily to cook aquatic and porcine resources. The technology used to produce these cooking vessels, however, changed over time, with new firing techniques associated with a shift to the use of shell temper. The results have implications for understanding prehistoric technology and subsistence in other parts of the world.

Type
Research Article
Information
Antiquity , Volume 95 , Issue 384 , December 2021 , pp. 1446 - 1463
Copyright
Copyright © The Author(s), 2021. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of Antiquity Publications Ltd.

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Bērziņš, V. 2008. Sārnate: living by a coastal lake during the east Baltic Neolithic (Acta Universitatis Ouluensis B, Humaniora 86). Oulu: Oulun Yliopisto.Google Scholar
Bērziņš, V. & Dumpe, B.. 2016. Cūkdelfīnu zobu iespiedumi neolīta keramikas rotājumā. Latvijas Vēstures Institūta Žurnāls 1: 527.Google Scholar
Bērziņš, V. et al. 2014. New research at Riņņukalns, a Neolithic freshwater shell midden in northern Latvia. Antiquity 88: 715–32. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0003598X0005064XCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Brinker, U. et al. 2020. Two burials in a unique freshwater shell midden: insights into transformations of Stone Age hunter-fisher daily life in Latvia. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences 12: 97. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12520-020-01049-7CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Courel, B. et al. 2020. Organic residue analysis shows sub-regional patterns in the use of pottery by northern European hunter-gatherers. Royal Society Open Science 7: 192016. https://doi.org/10.1098/rsos.192016Google ScholarPubMed
Craig, O.E. et al. 2007. Molecular and isotopic demonstration of the processing of aquatic products in northern European prehistoric pottery. Archaeometry 49: 135–52. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-4754.2007.00292.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Craig, O.E. et al. 2013. Earliest evidence for the use of pottery. Nature 496: 351–54. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature12109CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Cramp, L.J.E. et al. 2014. Neolithic dairy farming at the extreme of agriculture in northern Europe. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 281: 20140819. https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2014.0819CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Diniz, M. & Cubas, M.. 2015. Pots for thought: Neolithic pottery in the Sado Mesolithic shell middens, in Bicho, N., Detry, C., Price, T.D. & Cunha, E. (ed.) Muge 150th: the 150th anniversary of the discovery of Mesolithic shell middens. Volume 1: 375–90. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars.Google Scholar
Dumpe, B., Bērziņš, V. & Stilborg, O.. 2011. A dialogue across the Baltic on Narva and Ertebølle pottery. Bericht der Römisch-Germanischen Kommission 89: 409–41.Google Scholar
Evershed, R.P. 2008. Experimental approaches to the interpretation of absorbed organic residues in archaeological ceramics. World Archaeology 40: 2647. https://doi.org/10.1080/00438240801889373CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Evershed, R.P. et al. 2002. Chemistry of archaeological animal fats. Accounts of Chemical Research 35: 660–68. https://doi.org/10.1021/ar000200fCrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Evershed, R.P., Copley, M.S., Dickson, L. & Hansel, F.A.. 2008. Experimental evidence for the processing of marine animal products and other commodities containing polyunsaturated fatty acids in pottery vessels. Archaeometry 50: 101–13. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-4754.2007.00368.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Feathers, J.K. 2006. Explaining shell-tempered pottery in prehistoric eastern North America. Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory 13: 89133. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10816-006-9003-3CrossRefGoogle Scholar
German, K. 2010. Early hunter-gatherer ceramics in Karelia, in Jordan, P. & Zvelebil, M. (ed.) Ceramics before farming: the dispersal of pottery among prehistoric Eurasian hunter-gatherers: 225–80. Abingdon: Routledge.Google Scholar
Gosselain, O.P. & Smith, A. Livingstone. 1995. The ceramics and society project: an ethnographic and experimental approach to technological choices, in Lindahl, A. & Stilborg, O. (ed.) The aim of laboratory analysis of ceramics in archaeology (Vitterhets Historie och Antikvitets Akademien Konferenser 34): 147–60. Stockholm: Kungl.Google Scholar
Gumiński, W. 1999. Kultura Zedmar a kultura Narva. Razem czy osobno. Światowit 42: 5969.Google Scholar
Hammer, Ø., Harper, D.A.T. & Ryan, P.D.. 2001. PAST: paleontological statistics software package for education and data analysis. Palaeontologia Electronica 4: 19.Google Scholar
Hansel, F.A., Copley, M.S., Madureira, L.A.S. & Evershed, R.P.. 2004. Thermally produced ω-(o-alkylphenyl)alkanoic acids provide evidence for the processing of marine products in archaeological pottery vessels. Tetrahedron Letters 45: 29993002. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tetlet.2004.01.111CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Herbert, J. M. 2008. The history and practice of shell tempering in the middle Atlantic: a useful balance. Southeastern Archaeology 27: 265–85.Google Scholar
Heron, C. et al. 2015. Cooking fish and drinking milk? Patterns in pottery use in the southeastern Baltic, 3300–2400 cal BC. Journal of Archaeological Science 63: 3343. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2015.08.002CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Jennbert, K. 2011. Ertebølle pottery in southern Sweden: a question of handicraft, networks and creolisation in a period of Neolithisation. Bericht der Römisch-Germanischen Kommission 89: 89110.Google Scholar
Kojo, Y. 1981. Inter site pottery movements in the Jomon Period. Journal of the Anthropological Society of Nippon 89: 2754. https://doi.org/10.1537/ase1911.89.27CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kriiska, A. 1995. Narva jõe alamjoksu ala neoliitiline keraamika. Muinasaja Teadus 3: 54115.Google Scholar
Kriiska, A. 1996. The Neolithic pottery manufacturing technique of the lower course of the Narva River. PACT 51: 373–84.Google Scholar
Kriiska, A. et al. 2017. Late Mesolithic Narva stage in Estonia: pottery, settlement types and chronology. Journal of Estonian Archaeology 21: 5286. https://doi.org/10.3176/arch.2017.1.03CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kulkova, M. & Kulkov, A.. 2016. The identification of organic temper in Neolithic pottery from Russia and Belarus. The Old Potter's Almanack 21: 212.Google Scholar
Kulkova, M. et al. 2012. Chronology of Neolithic–Early Metal Age sites at the Okhta River mouth (Saint Petersburg, Russia). Radiocarbon 54: 1049–63. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0033822200047664CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Loze, I.B. 2005. Small anthropomorphic figurines in clay at Ģipka Neolithic settlements. Documenta Praehistorica 32: 155–65. https://doi.org/10.4312/dp.32.11CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Maritan, L., Mazzoli, C. & Freestone, I.. 2007. Modelling changes in mollusc shell internal microstructure during firing: implications for temperature estimation in shell-bearing pottery. Archaeometry 49: 529–41. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-4754.2007.00318.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
Oras, E. et al. 2017. The adoption of pottery by North-east European hunter-gatherers: evidence from lipid residue analysis. Journal of Archaeological Science 78: 112–19. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2016.11.010CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pääkkönen, M., Bläuer, A., Evershed, R.P. & Asplund, H.. 2016. Reconstructing food procurement and processing in the early Comb Ware period through organic residues in early Comb and Jäkärlä Ware pottery. Fennoscandia Archaeologica 33: 5775.Google Scholar
Piezonka, H. 2015. Jäger, Fischer, Töpfer: Wildbeutergruppen mit früher Keramik in Nordosteuropa im 6. und 5. Jahrtausend v. Chr (Archäologie in Eurasien 30). Bonn: Habelt.Google Scholar
Rice, P.M. 1987. Pottery analysis: a sourcebook. Chicago (IL): University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
Skandfer, M. 2011. Early pottery in Northern Fennoscandia. Bericht der Römisch-Germanischen Kommission 89: 165–80.Google Scholar
Spataro, M. 2019. Starčevo ceramic technology: the first potters of the Middle Danube Basin (Universitätsforschungen zur prähistorischen Archäologie 341/Neolithikum und Chalkolithikum in Südosteuropa 4). Bonn: Habelt.Google Scholar
Starkova, E. & Zakościelna, A.. 2018. Traditions of ceramic production in the Central and Eastern Europe Eneolithic: Tripolye, Late Malice and Lublin-Volhynian Cultures. Sprawozdania Archeologiczne 70: 6785. https://doi.org/10.23858/SA70.2018.004CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Telizhenko, S. 2018. The Køkkenmødding of eastern Ukraine. Vita Antiqua 10: 2537. https://doi.org/10.37098/2519-4542-2018-1-10-25-37CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Tite, M.S., Kilikoglou, V. & Vekinis, G.. 2001. Strength, toughness and thermal shock resistance of ancient ceramics, and their influence on technological choice. Archaeometry 43: 301–24. https://doi.org/10.1111/1475-4754.00019CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Supplementary material: PDF

Spataro et al. supplementary material

Spataro et al. supplementary material

Download Spataro et al. supplementary material(PDF)
PDF 393 KB

Save article to Kindle

To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Hunter-fisher-gatherer pottery production and use at the Neolithic shell-midden of Riņņukalns, Latvia
Available formats
×

Save article to Dropbox

To save this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Hunter-fisher-gatherer pottery production and use at the Neolithic shell-midden of Riņņukalns, Latvia
Available formats
×

Save article to Google Drive

To save this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Hunter-fisher-gatherer pottery production and use at the Neolithic shell-midden of Riņņukalns, Latvia
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *