Game On: Ceramic Discoidals from the Lamar Site

Author(s): S. Andrew Wise

Year: 2018


Ceramic discoidals represent a commonplace but often overlooked artifact found at many Mississippian sites. Generally, these important cultural objects are classified by archaeologists as gaming pieces. This assumption is based on European descriptions of Native American games. However, uncertainty remains regarding the function and significance of this class of artifact with no conclusive evidence that discoidals were used exclusively for games. Additionally, comparing ceramic discoidals with stone discoidals, chunkey stones, or similar artifacts is problematic. An analysis of artifacts from the Lamar site near Macon, Georgia uncovered a large number of ceramic discoidals. Excavated in the 1930s, a study of discoidals from this collection provides information regarding their distribution and variety. This research contributes to our understanding of daily life during the Lamar period as well as discoidals from Mississippian contexts. Furthermore, it is important to understand how these ceramic discoidals correspond with historic descriptions of Native American game pieces. By assessing the physical properties of discoidals from the Lamar site, this study sheds light on a neglected class of artifacts.

Cite this Record

Game On: Ceramic Discoidals from the Lamar Site. S. Andrew Wise. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 443279)

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections

Spatial Coverage

min long: -93.735; min lat: 24.847 ; max long: -73.389; max lat: 39.572 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 22469