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The end of the affair: formal chronological modelling for the top of the Neolithic tell of Vinča-Belo Brdo

  • Nenad Tasić (a1), Miroslav Marić (a2), Kristina Penezić (a1), Dragana Filipović (a2), Ksenija Borojević (a3), Nicola Russell (a4), Paula Reimer (a5), Alistair Barclay (a6), Alex Bayliss (a7), Dušan Borić (a8), Bisserka Gaydarska (a8) and Alasdair Whittle (a8)...

Bayesian statistical frameworks have been used to calculate explicit, quantified estimates for site chronologies, and have been especially useful for resolving the complex probability distributions of calibrated radiocarbon dates to the level of individual prehistoric lifetimes and generations. Here the technique is applied to the Neolithic tell of Vinča-Belo Brdo in order to answer long-standing questions about the timing and circumstances of its demise. Modelled date estimates place the end of the site in the second half of the forty-sixth century cal BC. Two successive horizons of closely spaced houses each suffered extensive burning; the interval between them was placed at a maximum of 25 years, with the last house probably used for less than 15 years. The evidence suggests that these house burnings were deliberate, and opens new considerations for the causes of the end of the tell-based system in south-east Europe.

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