Marajo Island Sites

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A number of sites on an island group located in the mouth of the Amazon River, which evidence a long sequence of ceramic use. A single radiocarbon date of c980 be relates to the earliest Anana-tuba phase which has relatively deep shell middens that imply a long-term stable residence unusual for this area. This, together with abundant pottery, tempered with crushed sherds, suggests an incipient agricultural stage, although direct floral evidence is lacking. Artificial mounds — some used for burial, some for habitation — occur in the later Marajoara phase in company with an unusual ceramic complex. Plain utility wares stand in sharp contrast to elaborate polychrome funerary wares and may suggest a degree of social stratification. Other commonly occurring ceramics include pedestal stools, spindle whorls, labrets and tangas (pubic covers). The Marajoa complex survived to some time close to ad 1500 but had already been replaced by a new intrusive group, the Aruans, by the time of European contact.

The Macmillan dictionary of archaeology, Ruth D. Whitehouse, 1983Copied