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Ref ID: 35823
Ref Type: Journal Article
Authors: Boriskovskii, P. I.
Title: Vietnam in primeval times. Part 5
Date: 1970
Source: Soviet Anthropology and Archaeology
Abstract: Caves are the only relics of the culture of the ancient Hoabinhians and Bac-sonians. But there is no doubt that the primitive inhabitants of Vietnam often settled beneath the open sky. Shell mounds (kitchen middens) — large oval or round hillocks several meters high, some thousands of square meters in area, and consisting primarily of the shells of edible molluscs — are the remnants of these dwelling sites. In the shell mounds one also finds fragments of stone and pottery, bones of animals and fish, charcoal, and ash — in general, the diverse resi dues of the life and activity of primitive men. Like caves, kitchen middens are among the most widespread and widely known types of primitive cultural relics. They have been found in Portugal, in Denmark, in the Soviet Far East, and in many other places. In Vietnam, a number of shell mounds are known, dating from the middle and late Neolithic (Chapters VII and VIII). But in 1963, Vietnamese archeologists discovered the Quynh-van kitchen midden, which shed an entirely new light on the problems of the early Neolithic of Vietnam. Excavations here, which opened an area of 50 square meters (5 × 10 m), were performed in August 1963. (1) The Quynh-van shell mound is about 230 km south of Hanoi, to the north of Vinh, and in Nge-an Province. This is a rather low-lying seaside locality. No Stone Age caves exist here. The shell mound is over 5 meters high, 7,400 square meters in area, and is visible from afar to one traveling the road northward from Vinh to Thanh-hoa. It consists of an enormous layer of shells of salt-water molluscs, with clearly marked stratification (Figs. 30, 31). Species of molluscs no longer present in the adjacent area are encountered. Many stone flakes and primitive stone tools, shards of pottery, deer horns, and fish bones are found (other remains of fauna are lacking). The cultural layer embodying all these finds reaches 5.20 m in thickness.
Date Created: 2/18/2001
Volume: 8
Page Start: 355
Page End: 366