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Agricultural origins and the isotopic identity of domestication in northern China

Barton, L and Newsome, SD and Chen, FH and Wang, H and Guilderson, TP and Bettinger, RL (2009) Agricultural origins and the isotopic identity of domestication in northern China. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 106 (14). 5523 - 5528. ISSN 0027-8424

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Abstract

Stable isotope biochemistry (δ 13C and δ 15N) and radiocarbon dating of ancient human and animal bone document 2 distinct phases of plant and animal domestication at the Dadiwan site in northwest China. The first was brief and nonintensive: at various times between 7900 and 7200 calendar years before present (calBP) people harvested and stored enough broomcorn millet (Panicum miliaceum) to provision themselves and their hunting dogs (Canis sp.) throughout the year. The second, much more intensive phase was in place by 5900 calBP: during this time both broomcorn and foxtail (Setaria viridis spp. italica) millets were cultivated and made significant contributions to the diets of people, dogs, and pigs (Sus sp.). The systems represented in both phases developed elsewhere: the earlier, low-intensity domestic relationship emerged with hunter-gatherers in the arid north, while the more intensive, later one evolved further east and arrived at Dadiwan with the Yangshao Neolithic. The stable isotope methodology used here is probably the best means of detecting the symbiotic human-plantanimal linkages that develop during the very earliest phases of domestication and is thus applicable to the areas where these connections first emerged and are critical to explaining how and why agriculture began in East Asia.


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Details

Item Type: Article
Status: Published
Creators/Authors:
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Barton, Lloukas@pitt.eduLOUKAS0000-0003-1519-4226
Newsome, SD
Chen, FH
Wang, H
Guilderson, TP
Bettinger, RL
Centers: Other Centers, Institutes, Offices, or Units > Center for Comparative Archaeology
Date: 7 April 2009
Date Type: Publication
Journal or Publication Title: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Volume: 106
Number: 14
Page Range: 5523 - 5528
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1073/pnas.0809960106
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Anthropology
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 0027-8424
Date Deposited: 23 Oct 2014 17:08
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2019 15:58
URI: http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/id/eprint/23352

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