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Carbon and Nitrogen isotopic analysis on human and animal bones of Nanwa site, Henan Province, China

Author(s): Guowen Zhang

Year: 2017

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The Nanwa site(1680BC-Song Dynasty; located in Dengfeng city, Henan Province, China, provided a valuable opportunity for the Xia Dynasty and the Chinese civilization investigation. We could provide effective evidence for the food resources utilize pattern and agricultural economy development. Stable isotopic carbon, nitrogen analysis of 14 animals and 22 human bone collagen from the Nanwa site indicated that, wild animals (-19.9‰, 4.4‰, n=1) have a C3-based terrestrial diet. Domesticated pigs (-7.6±0.6‰, 6.6±0.4‰, n=7) have a diet of predominated C4-based foods, as well as the sheep (-6.9‰, 6.2‰, n=1), cattle (-9.0‰,7.8‰, n=1), and dog (-6.6±0.5‰, 6.9±0.3‰, n=2), which is likely obtained from human feeding. The δ13C and δ15N value of the human from the Erlitou, Later Shang and to Spring and Autumn period is -12.1±4.1‰, -11.6±1.3‰, -7.5±4.9‰ and 5.5±1.3‰, 6.8±0.3‰, 6.8±0.9‰, indicated that they mainly relied on C4 foods, probably millet or few animals fed on C4 plants. We also found that the Nanwa of the Erlitou to Late Shang Dynasty had consumed few C3 foods, which indicated a mixed agricultural economy, probably supplied by rice, beans and wheat. Compared to other archaeological culture people, the Nanwa had a different animal husbandry and agricultural economy pattern.

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Carbon and Nitrogen isotopic analysis on human and animal bones of Nanwa site, Henan Province, China. Guowen Zhang. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 432133)


Spatial Coverage

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

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 16758

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