Faculté des sciences

The emergence of pottery in Africa during the tenth millennium cal BC: new evidence from Ounjougou (Mali)

Huysecom, E. ; Rasse, M. ; Lespez, L. ; Neumann, K. ; Fahmy, A. ; Ballouche, A. ; Ozainne, S. ; Maggetti, Marino ; Tribolo, Ch. ; Soriano, S.

In: Antiquity, 2009, vol. 83, no. 322, p. 905–917

New excavations in ravines at Ounjougou in Mali have brought to light a lithic and ceramic assemblage that dates from before 9400 cal BC. The authors show that this first use of pottery coincides with a warm wet period in the Sahara. As in East Asia, where very early ceramics are also known, the pottery and small bifacial arrowheads were the components of a new subsistence strategy exploiting an... Plus

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    Summary
    New excavations in ravines at Ounjougou in Mali have brought to light a lithic and ceramic assemblage that dates from before 9400 cal BC. The authors show that this first use of pottery coincides with a warm wet period in the Sahara. As in East Asia, where very early ceramics are also known, the pottery and small bifacial arrowheads were the components of a new subsistence strategy exploiting an ecology associated with abundant wild grasses. In Africa, however, the seeds were probably boiled (then as now) rather than made into bread.