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Title: Ancient pots and potters of the Atures Rapids region : occupation and interaction processes in pre-colonial Middle Orinoco, Venezuela
Author: Lozada Mendieta, Natalia
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2020
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The earliest written sources on the Middle Orinoco inhabitants singled-out the Átures Rapids as a key trading centre between the 16th and 18th century and from before the Spanish arrival. The previous archaeological studies described the ceramic materials in terms of form and style, following a cultural historic approach, and mostly interested in answering chronological questions. However, the pre- colonial indigenous occupation of the area and exchange network was still poorly known. In particular, the peopling of this area has been the centre of debate since most of the archaeological materials found along the river present a varied range of co-occurring paste recipes that used several different inorganic and organic ingredients, followed distinct production technologies and displayed different vessel forms, challenging the idea of a traditionally defined ‘ceramic culture’. Co-existing, distinct ceramic wares with different production sequences are reconstructed in the present research using petrography, portable X-ray fluorescence and macro trace analysis, which suggest a more nuanced ‘reading’ on the ancient inhabitants of the Orinoco river. Based on ceramic technology studies, interaction, emulation, innovation and trading activities are discussed through the analysis of pottery sherds recovered from three newly excavated sites: Culebra (cal. AD 437-1155), Rabo de Cochino island (cal. 100 BC- AD 1440) and Picure island (cal. AD 310-1480). The stratigraphic distribution, persistence of ceramics through the sequence and variability in these sites will be presented as part of an initial discussion that intends to contribute to the reconstruction of various pre-colonial occupations and interaction processes of the Átures region in Venezuela.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available