Plant Residues from the Pre-Austronesian Tanshishan site (c. 4300 BP) and Their Interpretation

Author(s): Sheahan Bestel; Tianlong Jiao

Year: 2017


A mid-Neolithic expansion of farming cultures into the coastal areas of Fujian province, located opposite Taiwan on the other side of the Taiwan Strait, occurred around c. 4300 cal BP. Crops including foxtail millet and rice formed part of these farmers' diet, and plant remains such as bamboo, possibly used for wooden cooking implements, were also common in sediments and residues at these Longshan-period sites. Plant residues from pottery fragments excavated from the Tanshishan site, located in Fujian Province, eastern China, have the potential to shed light on the subsistence and diet of the proto-Austronesian seafaring people who occupied Taiwan and subsequently spread across parts of the Pacific and into Australia. Despite the suggested ancestry of the Tanshishan culture to proto-Austronesian sites such as Damaoshan and Huangguashan, plant remains recovered from the proto-Austronesian sites were poor and crops were difficult to identify. The implications of the results from the research on residues and plant remains on the public understanding of Austronesian origins will be discussed.

Cite this Record

Plant Residues from the Pre-Austronesian Tanshishan site (c. 4300 BP) and Their Interpretation. Sheahan Bestel, Tianlong Jiao. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 430433)


Geographic Keywords
East/Southeast Asia

Spatial Coverage

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

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 15849