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Edge-Ground and Waisted Axes in the Western Pacific Islands: Implications for an Example from the Yaeyama Islands, Southernmost Japan

Anderson, Atholl; Summerhayes, Glenn

Description

A flaked, ground, and waisted axe, discovered on Iriomote Island in the Yaeyama group, southernmost Japan, appears to be a unique find in Japanese prehistory. Its resemblance to waisted, edge-ground axes which, in Australia, are of Pleistocene age, and to similar artifacts of early Holocene age in New Guinea, as well as potential antecedents in the Pleistocene edge-ground axes of Honshu, invites questions about its significance. This is especially so because the Yaeyama Islands are regarded...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorAnderson, Atholl
dc.contributor.authorSummerhayes, Glenn
dc.date.accessioned2015-12-08T22:44:54Z
dc.identifier.issn0066-8435
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/37602
dc.description.abstractA flaked, ground, and waisted axe, discovered on Iriomote Island in the Yaeyama group, southernmost Japan, appears to be a unique find in Japanese prehistory. Its resemblance to waisted, edge-ground axes which, in Australia, are of Pleistocene age, and to similar artifacts of early Holocene age in New Guinea, as well as potential antecedents in the Pleistocene edge-ground axes of Honshu, invites questions about its significance. This is especially so because the Yaeyama Islands are regarded currently as having been first occupied by people during the Shimotabaru phase of Neolithic culture, beginning about 3800 B.P. Comparison with similar western Pacific artifacts, and consideration of the eustatic history of the Yaeyamas, suggest that the Iriomote example might be of early Holocene age, although its origin within the late Holocene cannot be excluded. The find raises questions about the human history of the southern Ryukyu groups that demand further research.
dc.publisherUniversity of Hawaii Press
dc.sourceAsian Perspectives
dc.source.urihttp://muse.jhu.edu/journals/asian_perspectives/v047/47.1anderson02.pdf
dc.subjectKeywords: archaeological evidence; artifact; colonization; cultural history; Holocene; Neolithic; Pleistocene; Asia; Australasia; Australia; Eurasia; Far East; Iriomote; Japan; Malay Archipelago; New Guinea; Okinawa [Ryukyu Islands]; Pacific islands; Pacific Ocean; Holocene colonization; Japan; Polished waisted axe; Yaeyama Islands
dc.titleEdge-Ground and Waisted Axes in the Western Pacific Islands: Implications for an Example from the Yaeyama Islands, Southernmost Japan
dc.typeJournal article
local.description.notesImported from ARIES
local.identifier.citationvolume47
dc.date.issued2008
local.identifier.absfor210103 - Archaeology of Asia, Africa and the Americas
local.identifier.ariespublicationu4029967xPUB151
local.type.statusPublished Version
local.contributor.affiliationAnderson, Atholl, College of Asia and the Pacific, ANU
local.contributor.affiliationSummerhayes, Glenn, College of Asia and the Pacific, ANU
local.description.embargo2037-12-31
local.bibliographicCitation.issue1
local.bibliographicCitation.startpage45
local.bibliographicCitation.lastpage58
dc.date.updated2015-12-08T10:48:43Z
local.identifier.scopusID2-s2.0-41549090428
CollectionsANU Research Publications

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