Collection Description

Tradition Name

Yellow River Early Neolithic

Tradition Description

The Yellow River Early Neolithic Tradition is located in China north of the Qinling-Huaihe Line, including Northeast China and the upper Han River Valley. It occurred from 8500-6200 BP. The people were incipient agriculturalists (mostly raising millet and pigs) who still hunted, fished, and gathered. Settlements became larger and more permanent throughout the tradition. Both ceramics and cemeteries became common.


Select the Tradition Summary link above for a longer description of the culture.


Asia --East Asia



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Collection Overview

Documents referred to in this section are included in the eHRAF Archaeology collection and are referenced by author, date of publication, and title where necessary.

Overviews of the Yellow River Early Neolithic Tradition can be found in: Nelson (1990), An (1989), and Liu and Chen (2012). Overviews of subtraditions can be found in Wang (2013) for Houli and Beixin, and in Shelach (2000) for Xinglongwa and Zhaobaogou.

Site reports, documents that focus on a site, and discussions of other fieldwork are found in: Bettinger et al. (2010) for excavations at Dadiwan; Zhang and Cui (2013) for fieldwork at Jiahu; and Linduff, Drennan, and Shelach (2004) who discuss fieldwork around Chifeng.

Results of laboratory analyses can be found in: Liu et al. (2010) who analyzed grinding tools; Barton et al. (2009) who examined stable isotopes in bones from Dadiwan; Lu et al. (2009) who analyzed the remains of grain from Cishan; Smith and Lee (2008) who studied human remains from Jiahu; Xiang et al. (2014) who analyzed chicken bones; Zhao (2011) who examined plant remains; and Li et al. (2011) who analyzed pollen from Beifudi.

Several authors concentrate on the origins of agriculture and what may have stimulated its adoption: Bar-Yosef (2011), Cohen (2011), and Crawford (2009).

For further information on individual works in this collection, see the abstracts in the citations preceding each document.

Overview by

Sarah Berry

Bo – bowl – use "UTENSILS (415)"

Ding – tripod cooking pot – use "UTENSILS (415)"

Dou – pedestal vessel

Guan – cylindrical jar – use "UTENSILS (415)"

Hu – necked jar, vase – use "UTENSILS (415)"

Mobang – hand-held grinding stone (used with a mopan) – use "FOOD PREPARATION (252)" with "GENERAL TOOLS (412)"

Mopan – stone slab for grinding food (used with a mobang) – use "FOOD PREPARATION (252)" with "GENERAL TOOLS (412)"

Zun – beaker or large-mouth urn

Indexing Notes by

Sarah Berry

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