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INAA and LA-ICP-MS Analysis of Painted Pottery from the Central Area of Yangshao Culture (ca. 5000-7000 BP), Northwest China

Author(s): Wugan Luo ; Qihuang Yang ; William D. Gilstrap ; Michael D. Glascock

Year: 2016

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Summary

The Yangshao Culture (ca. 5000-7000 BP) is renowned in the archaeology of prehistoric China for its large quantities of high quality painted pottery. Although the provinces of Shaanxi and Shanxi are rich in Yangshao material culture, scientific analysis has not often taken place in studies of the pottery until now. Bulk chemical analysis by INAA indicates production of painted vessels occurred at multiple sites in both Shaanxi and Shanxi provinces. Moreover, it is now apparent that several vessel types were being manufactured by individual producers in both Shaanxi and Shanxi provinces. With a clear understanding that there were multiple places of production, LA-ICP-MS was used to investigate the kinds of raw materials used as paint for pottery decoration. Results indicate that while painting technology is shared, not every site uses the same kinds of raw materials. This research focuses on the combined results of INAA and LA-ICP-MS analyses of 60 painted ceramic vessels from five different sites dating to the early-middle and middle periods of the Yangshao Culture. Combined bulk and micro-sampling chemical analytical techniques have provided new and significant insight into the locations of pottery production and the kinds of choices potters made during the middle Yangshao period.


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INAA and LA-ICP-MS Analysis of Painted Pottery from the Central Area of Yangshao Culture (ca. 5000-7000 BP), Northwest China. Wugan Luo, Qihuang Yang, William D. Gilstrap, Michael D. Glascock. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 405178)


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Spatial Coverage

min long: 66.885; min lat: -8.928 ; max long: 147.568; max lat: 54.059 ;

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America