Prehistoric artifacts suggest a neolithic era independently developed in New Guinea

Related Articles

Related Articles

New artifacts uncovered at the Waim archaeological site in the highlands of New Guinea – illustrate a shift in human behavior between 5050 and 4200 years ago in response to the widespread emergence of agriculture, ushering in a regional Neolithic Era similar to the Neolithic in Eurasia.

The location and pattern of the artifacts at the site suggest a fixed domestic space and symbolic cultural practices, hinting that the region began to independently develop hallmarks of the Neolithic about 1000 years before Lapita farmers from Southeast Asia arrived in New Guinea.

While scientists have known that wetland agriculture originated in the New Guinea highlands between 8000 and 4000 years ago, there has been little evidence for corresponding social changes like those that occurred in other parts of the world.

To better understand what life was like in this region as agriculture spread, Ben Shaw et al. excavated and examined a trove of artifacts from the recently identified Waim archaeological site.

“What is truly exciting is that this was the first time these artifacts have been found in the ground, which has now allowed us to determine their age with radiocarbon dating,” Shaw said.

The researchers analyzed a stone carving fragment depicting the brow ridge of a human or animal face, a complete stone carving of a human head with a bird perched on top (recovered by Waim residents), and two ground stone pestle fragments with traces of yam, fruit and nut starches on their surfaces.


Subscribe to more articles like this by following our Google Discovery feed - Click the follow button on your desktop or the star button on mobile. Subscribe

They also identified an obsidian core that provides the first evidence for long-distance, off-shore obsidian trade, as well as postholes where house posts may have once stood.

AMERICAN ASSOCIATION FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF SCIENCE

Header Image Credit : Ben Shaw, UNSW.

- Advertisement -

Download the HeritageDaily mobile application on iOS and Android

More on this topic

LATEST NEWS

Pella – Birthplace of Alexander The Great

Pella is an archaeological site and the historical capital of the ancient kingdom of Macedon.

New Argentine fossils uncover history of celebrated conifer group

Newly unearthed, surprisingly well-preserved conifer fossils from Patagonia, Argentina, show that an endangered and celebrated group of tropical West Pacific trees has roots in the ancient supercontinent that once comprised Australia, Antarctica and South America, according to an international team of researchers.

High-tech CT reveals ancient evolutionary adaptation of extinct crocodylomorphs

The tree of life is rich in examples of species that changed from living in water to a land-based existence.

Fish fossils become buried treasure

Rare metals crucial to green industries turn out to have a surprising origin. Ancient global climate change and certain kinds of undersea geology drove fish populations to specific locations.

Archaeologists Discover Viking Toilet in Denmark

Archaeologists excavating a settlement on the Stevns Peninsula in Denmark suggests they have discovered a toilet from the Viking Age.

Innovation by ancient farmers adds to biodiversity of the Amazon, study shows

Innovation by ancient farmers to improve soil fertility continues to have an impact on the biodiversity of the Amazon, a major new study shows.

Lost Shiva Temple Buried in Sand Discovered by Local Villagers

Villagers from the Perumallapadu village in the Pradesh’s Nellore district of India have unearthed the 300-year-old Temple of Nageswara Swamy on the banks of the Penna River.

Ma’rib – Capital of the Kingdom of Saba

Ma'rib is an archaeological site and former capital of the ancient kingdom of Saba in modern-day Ma'rib in Yemen

Giant Egg Discovered in Antarctica Belonged to Marine Reptile

A large fossil discovered in Antarctica by Chilean researchers in 2011 has been found to be a giant, soft-shell egg from 66 million years ago.

Archaeologists Find Evidence of Incest Among Irelands Early Elite at Newgrange Passage Tomb

Archaeologists working with Geneticists from the Trinity College Dublin have determined that a burial in the Newgrange passage tomb shows indications of first-degree incest.

Popular stories