New evidence for Bronze Age agricultural settlements in the Zhunge’er (Junggar) Basin, China

  • Jia P
  • Betts A
  • Wu X
  • 15

    Readers

    Mendeley users who have this article in their library.
  • 15

    Citations

    Citations of this article.

Abstract

The Zhunge'er (Junggar) Basin in northern Xinjiang was a key crossroads in antiquity for the dispersal of ideas and technological innovations from the Eurasian steppe into the heartland of central China. The Bronze Age chronology of the Zhunge'er Basin is chiefly based on relative dating and little is known about subsistence strategies, although the strong tradition of nomadic and transhumant pastoralism among modern populations suggests that there may have been a high degree of mobility. The visibility of ancient cemeteries and the need to salvage graves before they are looted have resulted in a lack of focus on settlements, with a consequent assumption that in antiquity agriculture played a limited role. This assumption has been challenged by rescue excavations at the Jimusa'er (Jimsar) Luanzagangzi site, which indicate that agriculture may have been a significant component of Bronze Age subsistence strategies. Small-scale soundings at settlement sites provide well-stratified sequences of material for absolute dating which can be used to place the artifacts recovered from graves in a more secure chronological context.

Get free article suggestions today

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research

Sign up here
Already have an account ?Sign in

Find this document

Authors

  • Peter Weiming Jia

  • Alison Betts

  • Xinhua Wu

Cite this document

Choose a citation style from the tabs below

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free