Environmental Archaeology on the Rise and Decline of Ancient Culture around 2000BC in the Yishu River Basin

  • 1. Department of Geography and Tourism, Linyi Teachers' College, Linyi 276005, China;
    2. Department of Urban and Resources Sciences, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210093, China

Received date: 2005-10-31

  Revised date: 2005-11-26

  Online published: 2006-03-25

Supported by

National Natural Science Foundation of China, No.40271103; Subject Construction of Physical Geography during "985" and Testing Fund of Nanjing University


Neolithic culture series in Yishu River basin developed in the order of Dawenkou culture-Longshan culture-Yueshi culture. In the period of Dawenkou culture, the ancient culture developed rapidly. During the period of Longshan culture, the ancient culture reached climax, having a magnificent time. The ancient culture decayed significantly in Yueshi culture period. According to the study on the records of environmental changes about Yishu River basin, using 14C dating, δ13C, grain size, magnetic susceptibility and geo-chemical analysis, we acquired high-resolution sequence of environmental changes from 2970BC to 1050BC: 2970BC-2260BC, the climate of study area was warm and wet; 2260BC-1880BC, the climate had a mutation with an extensive temperature drop; and 1880BC-1050BC, the climate changed greatly. During the early and middle stage of Longshan culture (2600BC-2300BC), the climate in the Yishu River basin was warm and wet. Paddy-oriented agriculture planted paddy was very well developed. The society was flourishing with great amount of archaeological sites. The cooling starting in 2260BC made the paddies shortfall in output or even no seeds were gathered. This situation intensified the discrepancy between population and resource. The scarcity in natural resources led to susbstantial decrease in population and subsequent drop in archaeological sites. About 2000BC Longshan culture was displaced by Yueshi culture which was relatively underdeveloped, simple and unsophisticated.

Cite this article

GAO Huazhong, ZHU Cheng, CAO Guangjie . Environmental Archaeology on the Rise and Decline of Ancient Culture around 2000BC in the Yishu River Basin[J]. Acta Geographica Sinica, 2006 , 61(3) : 255 -261 . DOI: 10.11821/xb200603004


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