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Complex cattle exchange in the Scandinavian Funnel Beaker Culture. The case of Falbygden, Sweden

Complex cattle exchange in the Scandinavian Funnel Beaker Culture. The case of Falbygden, Sweden
Complex cattle exchange in the Scandinavian Funnel Beaker Culture. The case of Falbygden, Sweden
In this contribution, we highlight some of the results from analyses of cattle management at two Neolithic settlement sites in Falbygden, western Sweden. The two sites are located close to each other in the parish of Karleby in central Falbygden. Both were excavated 2012–2017 and yielded abundant animal bones, due to the calcareous bedrock. 14C datings indicate that they were both inhabited continuously during the period c. 3200–2900 BC, i.e. the Middle Neolithic Funnel Beaker (TRB) culture.

Bulk and laser ablation strontium isotope ratios in cattle teeth from these settlements suggest a complex and wide-ranging system of animal exchange in the Scandinavian Middle Neolithic. More than half of the cattle found in the Karleby settlements were born outside the Falbygden region, and laser ablation suggests variable and individual trajectories through the landscape, in some cases involving areas in eastern Sweden. Further, origins of cattle at the two settlements are only partly overlapping, suggesting independent contact networks.

We suggest an ongoing system of exchanges between settlement groups/social groups throughout Sweden to be behind this variability, rather than transhumance. This may in turn be motivated by a number of factors including biological herd viability, as well as social and economic factors.
73-83
Springer
Sjorgren, Karl-Goran
3671451f-69bf-4389-8aa8-acf03af52c63
Axelsson, Tony
270b927b-fc78-4ea5-9f51-2d1453de84f6
Vretmark, Maria
09cb6b0f-c4b8-4c49-8639-5b93a0b9cba6
Meiggs, David
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Price, T. Douglas
6a55c6d5-9ff5-41ff-b9ce-d21ed9c4c1c0
Pike, Alistair
e8603e20-0a89-4d57-a294-247b983fc857
Salmi, Anna-Kaisa
Niinimaki, Sirpa
Sjorgren, Karl-Goran
3671451f-69bf-4389-8aa8-acf03af52c63
Axelsson, Tony
270b927b-fc78-4ea5-9f51-2d1453de84f6
Vretmark, Maria
09cb6b0f-c4b8-4c49-8639-5b93a0b9cba6
Meiggs, David
a9e630f2-b7a7-4472-9274-332adf5213d3
Price, T. Douglas
6a55c6d5-9ff5-41ff-b9ce-d21ed9c4c1c0
Pike, Alistair
e8603e20-0a89-4d57-a294-247b983fc857
Salmi, Anna-Kaisa
Niinimaki, Sirpa

Sjorgren, Karl-Goran, Axelsson, Tony, Vretmark, Maria, Meiggs, David, Price, T. Douglas and Pike, Alistair (2021) Complex cattle exchange in the Scandinavian Funnel Beaker Culture. The case of Falbygden, Sweden. In, Salmi, Anna-Kaisa and Niinimaki, Sirpa (eds.) Archaeologies of Animal Movement. Animals on the Move. Switzerland. Springer, pp. 73-83. (doi:10.1007/978-3-030-68744-1_7).

Record type: Book Section

Abstract

In this contribution, we highlight some of the results from analyses of cattle management at two Neolithic settlement sites in Falbygden, western Sweden. The two sites are located close to each other in the parish of Karleby in central Falbygden. Both were excavated 2012–2017 and yielded abundant animal bones, due to the calcareous bedrock. 14C datings indicate that they were both inhabited continuously during the period c. 3200–2900 BC, i.e. the Middle Neolithic Funnel Beaker (TRB) culture.

Bulk and laser ablation strontium isotope ratios in cattle teeth from these settlements suggest a complex and wide-ranging system of animal exchange in the Scandinavian Middle Neolithic. More than half of the cattle found in the Karleby settlements were born outside the Falbygden region, and laser ablation suggests variable and individual trajectories through the landscape, in some cases involving areas in eastern Sweden. Further, origins of cattle at the two settlements are only partly overlapping, suggesting independent contact networks.

We suggest an ongoing system of exchanges between settlement groups/social groups throughout Sweden to be behind this variability, rather than transhumance. This may in turn be motivated by a number of factors including biological herd viability, as well as social and economic factors.

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Published date: 21 July 2021

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 450551
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/450551
PURE UUID: 5b8f6e0a-1f53-4830-a5f0-46cc7810a636
ORCID for Alistair Pike: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-5610-8948

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Date deposited: 03 Aug 2021 16:31
Last modified: 04 Aug 2021 01:43

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Contributors

Author: Karl-Goran Sjorgren
Author: Tony Axelsson
Author: Maria Vretmark
Author: David Meiggs
Author: T. Douglas Price
Author: Alistair Pike ORCID iD
Editor: Anna-Kaisa Salmi
Editor: Sirpa Niinimaki

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