№1 2019

#1'2019

CONTENTS

RELATIVE AND ABSOLUTE CHRONOLOGY OF NEOLITHIC-BRONZE
AGE ARCHAEOLOGICAL CULTURES IN OB-IRTYSH FOREST-STEPPE:
CONTEMPORARY SITUATION

V.I. Molodin

This research was undertaken as part of RFBR project, grant No. 18-09-00406 “The Population of Middle Om River Basin in Early Holocene by Latest Data from Archaeological Complexes: periodization, chronology, and  cultural genesis”

The  long-term  studies  in  the  field  of  relative  and  absolute  chronology  of Neolithic – Bronze Age archaeological cultures permitted the author and his colleagues to develop the most up-to-date concepts on this subject pertaining to the region between Ob and Irtysh rivers. Such archaeological sites as funeral complexes, settlements, and sanctuaries were the primary foci of the studies. Radiocarbon  dates  are  made  in  the  high-rated  laboratories  in  Russia  and Germany. The  chronological  range  of  the  reviewed  cultures  covers  the  time span between 7 th  millennium BC (Early Neolithic) and 8 th  century BC (Bronze-Early Iron Age transition period).

Keywords: prehistory, Ob river, Irtysh, Neolithic, Holocene, Bronze Age, funeral complex, necropolis, archaeological culture, radiocarbon dating.

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ANCIENT CULTURES FROM THE SOUTHERN PART OF JAPANESE ARCHIPELAGO: THE RYUKYU ISLANDS

A.V. Tabarev, D.A. Ivanova

This research eff ort was sponsored by a grant from Russian Foundation for the Research in Humanities  (project № 15-01-00018 «Th  e Time of Overlords and Stone Tombs: Ancient Cultures of the Pacifi c at the Turn  of the Eras»)

Archaeological data from the Ryukyu islands attest to a particularly early presence  of  man  on  the  southern  islands  of  Japanese  archipelago  (since  the late  Paleolithic  nearly  30000  YBP),  unique  patterns  of  local  cultural  genesis (e.g. “Shel Midden Culture”, gusuku, etc.) since the early Holocene till 11-12 th  centuries AD as well as a broad spectrum of links to main parts of the archipelago

(Kyushu,  Honshu),  continental  areas  (China,  Korean  peninsula,  Indochina), and the insular world of South-East Asia (Taiwan, the Philippines, Indonesia). The  authors  focus  on  the  details  concerning  chronological  sequencing  of archaeological cultures found on the archipelago, on predominant pottery styles, on hypotheses about routes and times of introduction of certain agricultural practices (e.g. rice cultivation) to the Ryukyu island, and on the elements of commercial interaction including distribution of decorations found as parts of burial assemblages.

Keywords: Japanese archipelago, Ryukyu, Okinawa, Shell Middens culture, burials.

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J. Cassidy, N. Kononenko. A CASE STUDY IN ABRUPT CULTURE CHANGE: THE COLLAPSE OF THE LATE NEOLITHIC ZAISANOVSKAYA CULTURE AND THE IMPACT OF EXPANSIVE CULTURAL INTERACTION ON THE NORTHERN SEA OF JAPAN IN THE PRIMORYE REGION OF THE RUSSIAN FAR EAST

THE LOCATION AS AN ARCHAEOLOGICAL SOURCE

A.V. Zagorulko

            Among the types of archaeological sites there are objects not buried under or otherwise tied to any cultural layer (or are largely redeposited), yet widely referred to in archaeological literature and textbooks. Th  e author extensively explores Russian terminology for objects of this kind. Th  e problem is in Russian the term “location” might seem somewhat ambiguous, yet has had a broad usage lately in various contexts. Th  e author has set up an ambitious goal to escape this ambiguity by thoroughly analyzing the usage of the term both in historical retrospective and in contemporary works, in academic publications as well as administrative  and  legal  documentation.  To  make  things  clearer,  the  author

compares relevant Russian terms with their counterparts in European languages. He also traces the term’s origins back to such disciplines as paleontology. He maintains  that  from  there  the  defi nition  of  “geoarchaeological  location”  and the corresponding research methodology – i.e. identifying the elements of the “core” and structure of the altered cultural layer – came into Paleolithic studies.

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RESULTS OF RESEARCH OF DEFENSIVE CONSTRUCTIONS AT KOKSHAROVKA-1 ANCIENT TOWN SITE IN PRIMORYE REGION

N.A.Kliuyev, M.A.Yakupov

The paper overviews results of research (based on excavations in 2014) of defensive constructions of Bohai and post-Bohai time Koksharovka-1 ancient town in Primorye Region.

It became clear that the wall of the ancient town was rebuilt and before it was constructed there was a settlement of Bohai time in the area of the site. Two stages of the wall construction have been distinguished. At the late stage the wall was built wider and higher. A clay bound stone wall with outer side fortified with wooden stockade was erected on the top of it. The main wall was earthen with inclusion of stones. Its peculiarity of principle consists  in  the  way  of  construction.  The  technology  diff ers  from  majority  of known  valley  towns  of  medieval  epoch  in  Primorye  Region  where  “hangtu” technique or wooden chests were used for building earthen walls, or the walls were built of stone blocks. In case of Koksharovka-1 the wall was built not by multiple thin horizontal layers and streaks, but by several thick layers inclined at the angle of 40-45 degree from the basement to the top. Layers of inner and outer slopes of the wall were made one by one alternately, covering on the top previous layer of the opposite slope. The basement of the wall was deliberately dug into the basic earth and was made in the shape of steps.  Close analogies to the way of construction of Kokshrovka-1 wall are seen in  cross-sections  of  the  walls  of  Novorossiya-2  and  Krasnoye  Ozero  ancient towns. Similar way of construction of the wall by several thick layers of earth is also observed in cross-sections of walls of Koksharovka-2 and Steklianukha-1 ancient towns. By  the  moment  of  construction  of  walls  of  the  ancient  towns  mentioned above  their  constructors,  same  as  those  of  Koksharovka-1,  probably  had  not been influenced by traditions of Chinese fortification. Most probably, here we see ways of building of defensive constructions specific to local population.

Keywords: Primorye Region, early medieval epoch, Koksharovka-1 ancient town, defensive constructions.

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COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF NEOLITHIC CULTURES IN THE FAR ESTERN PRIMORYE CULTURAL AREA 6500-6000 ybp

Kim Jae Youn

This  article  is  the  first  ever  to  comparatively  analyze  Neolithic  materials from Lower Amur region, Russia’s Maritime Province (Primorye), and Korean Peninsula. The author particularly focuses on dating, peculiarities in dwelling structures, tools, and prevailing archaeological features including vessel shapes, ornamenting, and production techniques. It’s been established that the earliest Korean pottery occurs on the eastern coast (plain undecorated earthenware and red polished pottery with beaten (stamped) decoration), and its origins with high probability are traced to archaeological cultures of lower river Amur basin. The appliqué ceramics and Osanni type from Korean Peninsula demonstrate

their ties to the Neolithic cultures of Primorye. The author maintains that those ties can attest to the existence of a whole single cultural domain on these territories which could likewise include the Lower Amur region. In other words, all of the three above mentioned regions constituted one distinct Far Eastern Primorye Cultural Area in the Neolithic some 6500-6000 YBP. Other epochs witnessed similar cultural processes in this part of the world, and we need further in-depth investigations to be continued to elucidate on that.

Key words: Neolithic, Korean Peninsula, Lower Amur, Primorye, archaeological cultures, dwellings, ceramics.

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MORE NOTES ON THE CHARACTERISTICS OF TRADESMANSHIP WITHIN SMOLNY CULTURE SOCIETY

V.E. Shavkunov

Smolny  culture  sites  in  Primorski  Krai  sometimes  yield  artifacts  whose features disagree with locally produced items. To be more specific, we speak of a certain variety of armor plates, a bead made of dark blue paste glass, and a bead made from pale green nephrite. Such beads and armor plates never occur on the neighboring occupations of the Bohai and Mohe people. Furthermore, the

plates were never found on any other Far Eastern sites either. On the other hand, since 8th century AD those plates have been ubiquitous on sites throughout Forest-Steppe Altai. Sources of nephrite don’t exist in Primorye. Closest natural nephrite  deposits  are  located  in  Zabaikalye  (Transbaikalia).  Paste  glass,  the substance one of the beads is made of, comes from the Near East. It seems very unlikely that the items produced as far as thousand miles away from Primorye could  come  into  possession  of  the  Smolninsky  people  from  the  nearest neighbors. Most likely, such goods were brought here by traveling merchants. In antiquity there existed one particular route other than the famous Silk Road.

It was the so called Sable Road, a pathway for importing western goods to the Far East. This route, marked out by an array of Sogdian colony-trading stations, went to Transbaikalia and farther to Amur via Altai and western Mongolia, with the ending point, most probably, at a certain settlement in the middle reaches of river Arsenyevka. Geographically, the place was the junction of the Bohai, Smolny, and Mohe cultural areas. This trading post could easily be reached by small boats, from Amur via its tributary Ussury river, and farther on to the river Arsenyevka itself.

Keywords:  Smolny  culture,  Bohai,  Mohe,  trade,  “Sable  Road”,  Sogdian colony-trading station.

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COMPLEX STUDIES AT NOVOSELISCHENSKOYE ANCIENT FORTIFIED TOWN SITE IN KHANKA REGION OF PRIMORYE

Ya.E. Piskareva, E.V. Astashenkova, S.D. Prokopets, E.A. Sergusheva, A.L. Ivliev, N.A. Dorofeyeva, M.A. Lyaschevskaya, V.B. Bazarova, N.F. Pshenitchnikova

The  article  presents  preliminary  results  of  a  complex  archaeological study of an ancient fortifi ed town site named Novoselischenskoye. The site is located 18 km west of Lake Khanka. The research goal was to understand the subsistence system of an ancient town, taking into consideration environmental peculiarities of Khanka lowlands in the early Medievity. The authors have tried to outline the sphere of their academic interest at current stage of the research project. They report the beginning of eff orts to defi ne environmental conditions back in the early Middle Ages with the help of pollen-and-spore analysis of soil samples. It’s been established that the beginning of 4th-7th centuries coincided

with a prolonged period of cooling and drying of climate and this phenomenon is reflected in spore-pollen spectrums of samples from cultural layers of the site. The authors could determine the fl oral species that dominated the area during the  active  time  of  the  site.  With  the  use  of  flotation  technique,  the authors obtained data on cultivation of at least two species of domesticated plants by the inhabitants of the town. Traceological analysis of a stone tool found inside a dwelling showed multiple use of the tool for different household jobs. Aerial photography and photogrammetry permitted to seriously correct and enhance topographic mapping of the site area, and acquire new data about fortifications of the mediaeval town. Advanced technology-assisted investigations agree well with conventional rchaeological methods results. It was revealed that the site has seen three phases of habitation reflecting the Neolithic, Paleometal, and early Medievity. The authors maintain that during the fi rst two phases the site could

be described as a settlement without any defense structures like wall or moat. During the third phase, the time of the Mohe invasion of Khanka region, the site takes shape of a fortifi ed town. At the time the site area shrinks signifi cantly, and its inhabitants feel the need to fortify it. Th  e authors have analyzed basic fortification  (a  wall  and  a  moat)  as  well  as  dwelling  building  techniques.  To sum up, the authors report that even at the current stage of research they have succeeded  in  reconstructing  certain  facts  about  environmental  and  climatic conditions as well as obtaining important knowledge on aspects of the mediaeval population of Primorye’s subsistence system.

Keywords: early Middle Ages, Khanka region, Mohe town site, paleoecology, paleogeography, photogrammetry.

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STONE ARTIFACTS ON ZAISANOVKA-1 SETTLEMENT SITE BY DATA FROM EXCAVATIONS IN 1988 AND 2000

Yu.E. Vostretsov, N.A. Kononenko

The  authors  present  results  of  their  examination  of  a  stone  tools collection gathered during excavations at a multilayered site named Zaisanovka 1 in 1998 and 2000. This site, the namesake for a huge time span within the Neolithic in the south of Russia’s Far East, has been known since mid-1900s

owing to G.I. Andreyev. Recurring excavations at the turn of the millennia were conducted  with  the  use  of  advanced  new  technologies  and  achievements  of Russian archaeology, and resulted in obtaining new materials and knowledge of the site as well as the Neolithic in general in the region. It’s been established that  the  unearthed  dwelling  contained  an  untainted  assemblage  of  artifacts and  ecofacts  attributed  to  the  Gladkovski  stage  of  the  Zaisanovski  cultural tradition. It’s been established that the inhabitants conducted economic activity in the Posyet inlet some 4000 YBP during the phase of climatic warming and sea transgression. The dwellers used raw materials both locally available and delivered  from  elsewhere.  The  basic  element  of  stone  industry  was  obsidian

obtained  from  the  vicinity  of  Paktusan  volcano  300  km  off   of  Zaisanovka  1. Among other objectives, the authors paid particular interest to the morphology of  stone  tools,  chipping  and  producing  technique,  and  search  for  the  starch residue.  The  authors  separated  retouched,  polished  tools,  and  pebble  tools. Traceology  permitted  to  discriminate  between  different  functional  purposes of  the  tools,  which  could  be  associated  with  hunting,  fishing,  gathering,  or processing.

Keywords: East Asia, Neolithic, Zaisanovskaya cultural tradition, stone tools, traceology

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