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Chapter 4

Chapter 4

180 -2.5 84-2a 4 - VECHT

180 -2.5 84-2a 4 - VECHT REGION -3.5 -4.5 -5.5 83-1 87-7 89-17 0 30 m Figure 4.6 Schokland-P14, the Pleistocene subsurface (m -NAP), the excavation trenches, the presumed houses, and a part of the archaeobotanical sample locations indicated with dark grey and squares (after Ten Anscher 2001 and Gehasse 1995). layer date (yrs cal BC) cultural phase deposit E 3600-3300 SW 4 31** D 3600-3350 SW 4 32 C 3800-3600 SW 3/4 part of 200* B 4100-3800 SW 3/4 part of 200* A 4900-4100 SW 1/2/3 201 and part of 200* SW = Swifterbant * division of deposit 200 based on the distribution of pottery ** includes Swifterbant, Funnel Beaker and Single Grave pottery Table 4.6 Schokland-P14, trench 89-17, the layers and related interpretation of the dates (Gehasse 1995).

4.3 Schokland-p14 4 - VECHT REGION 4.3.1 archaeology The site Schokland-P14 (coordinates 181.580/518.000) was discovered in 1957 and partly excavated by the Institute for Prae- and Protohistoric Archaeology, University of Amsterdam (now the Amsterdam Archaeological Centre), between 1982 and 1991. The discussion below is based on Gehasse (1995). A site report that may contain new interpretations (concerning chronology amongst others) is expected in the future (Ten Anscher in prep.). The site revealed indications of occupation from the Late Palaeolithic until the Early Iron Age, but the majority of the finds date to the Neolithic. The discussion below will focus on the Neolithic (Swifterbant) occupation until c. 3300 BC. Archaeological remains from this period were found on the outcrop and on the slopes (refuse layers), partly mixed with younger material. Figure 4.6 shows a map of the excavation trenches and some features. The most detailed information was retrieved from trench 89-17 (20 x 5 metres; 5.00 to 3.19 m -NAP). In this trench, five strata with Swifterbant pottery were distinguished (layers A-E, see table 4.6). The 14 C dates however show considerable overlap, probably as a result of the mixture of material from different occupation periods. The stratigraphy can therefore only be used for dating with extreme caution (Lanting and Van der Plicht 2000). Occupation is argued to have occurred from 4900 BC onwards (Gehasse 1995). The material from the deepest layer (layer A) can however mainly be placed in the period 4400-4100 BC. The two oldest dates of layer A may furthermore indicate periods that are too old in age due to the reservoir effect resulting from dating food crusts that may have contained fish remains (pers. comm. Ten Anscher 2007). In all other trenches where Swifterbant material was found, only one ‘GSW’ layer (mixed Swifterbant) was distinguished. The subsistence was based on animal husbandry, hunting, fishing and fowling, crop cultivation and gathering. The stone assemblage contained a fragment of a quern (Gehasse 1995, 60). The bone assemblage comprised both wild and domestic animals (dog, cattle, pig and goat/sheep) and was rich in wild/domestic pig, beaver and red deer (antler). The fish remains comprised freshwater taxa and anadromous taxa (Raemaekers 1999). The features of Schokland-P14 related to the occupation before 3300 BC comprises graves dating to the middle phase of the Swifterbant culture, postholes and hearths. Ten Anscher (2001) distinguished four house structures (6 x 12 metres) that probably date to the late phase of the Swifterbant culture. Diatom analysis has demonstrated that at least part of the pottery was produced locally. The presence of houses, burials and the practice of a broad spectrum of activities including local pottery production indicate that the site functioned as a permanent settlement (Gehasse 1995, 67). The zoological remains mainly indicate summer and autumn occupation while there are a few indications of spring and winter occupation. Year-round occupation as well as occupation during the summer half-year only are both possible. The similarity of the fauna spectrum through time indicates continuity of site function (Gehasse 1995, 59, 67). Gehasse however argued that the site may have functioned as a temporary hunter-gatherer camp during a questionable first occupation phase until 4600 BC, since bones of domestic animals and pollen of cereals have not been found in the earliest part of layer A, and the number of sherds in this sub-layer is relatively low (Gehasse 1995, 67-68). The flint assemblage mainly consists of flint that was probably collected at or near the site itself, but it also contained small numbers indicating contact with the south. The pottery, stone axes and flint are said to indicate influences of the (epi-) Rössen culture (Gehasse 1995, 197). 181

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