Lapita sites in the central province of mainland Papua New Guinea

David, Bruno and McNiven, Ian J. and Richards, Thomas and Connaughton, Sean P. and Leavesley, Matthew and Barker, Bryce and Rowe, Cassandra (2011) Lapita sites in the central province of mainland Papua New Guinea. World Archaeology, 43 (4). pp. 576-593. ISSN 0043-8243


For over forty years, archaeologists working along Papua New Guinea's southern coastline have sought evidence for early ceramics and its relationship with Lapita wares of Island Melanesia. Failing to find any such evidence of pottery more than 2000 BP, and largely based on the excavation of eight early pottery-bearing sites during the late 1960s into the early 1970s, synchronous colonization some 2000 BP along 500km of the south Papuan coastline by post-Lapita ceramic manufacturers has been posited. This paper presents conclusive evidence for the presence of Lapita ceramics along the Papuan south coast between c. 2500 and 2900 cal. BP, thereby indicating that current models of colonization by ceramicists for the region need to be rethought. We conclude with a brief reflection as to why these Lapita horizons were missed by previous researchers.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © 2011 Taylor & Francis. Permanent restricted access to published version due to publisher copyright policy.
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Arts - School of Humanities and Communication
Date Deposited: 15 Mar 2012 03:12
Last Modified: 03 Feb 2015 03:24
Uncontrolled Keywords: Pacific colonization; South Papuan Lapita Province; Papua New Guinea; Torres Strait; ceramics; carbon dating
Fields of Research : 21 History and Archaeology > 2101 Archaeology > 210102 Archaeological Science
21 History and Archaeology > 2103 Historical Studies > 210313 Pacific History (excl. New Zealand and Maori)
21 History and Archaeology > 2101 Archaeology > 210106 Archaeology of New Guinea and Pacific Islands (excl. New Zealand)
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 95 Cultural Understanding > 9503 Heritage > 950306 Conserving Pacific Peoples Heritage
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1080/00438243.2011.624720

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