Session: #354

Theme & Session Format

7. From global to local: Baltic-Pontic studies
Session format:
Regular session

Title & Content

The Plant Story. Cultivation and Use of Plants in the Neolithic and Early Bronze Age in the Central and Eastern Europe
Since the dawn of history, plants have accompanied humans in providing them food, fuel for fires, building materials and clothing. However, it was only in the Neolith that the domestication of plants had begun. The sedentary way of life was related to plant cultivation and livestock breeding, and, as a result, people started to live in larger groups and constructed permanent settlements. Domestication as well as the subsequent spread of plant cultivation had revolutionized the course of prehistory.
The session aims to explore the importance of plants of the Neolithic and Early Bronze Age populations. We would like to discuss the problem of the potential regional variety of cultivation, ways of harvesting and plant foods storage, as well as processing plants to prepare food. The debate on the plant-based diet will be of particular interest to us, especially in relation to the recently intensified isotope research. Furthermore, the use of wild plants is also a significant issue for medicinal purposes, diversification of diet and for technical purposes. We, too, would like to discuss the use of plants for the production of pottery and clay objects as well as for the construction of residential houses and economic buildings. Moreover, we also aim to consider the traces of plants on flint and stone tools.
An application of sampling strategy as well as flotation on local archaeological sites are also noteworthy issues that we would like to go over. We intend to show the impact of a method on the results of analysis on specific examples and evaluate the value and validity of analytics of the archival materials. Technique applied to a dry archaeological context is rare, however, numerous finds of water wells, throughout the Europe, yielded an unusual insight into the Prehistoric economy and environment.
Neolithic, Early Bronze Age, Central and Eastern Europe, Plants, Archeobotany, crops
Session associated with MERC:
Session associated with CIfA:
Session associated with SAfA:
Session associated with CAA:
Session associated with DGUF:
Session associated with other:


Main organiser:
Iwona Sobkowiak-Tabaka (Poland) 1
Joanna Rennwanz (Poland) 2
Petr Kočár (Czech Republic) 3
Ivana Vostrovská (Czech Republic) 4
1. Faculty of Archaeology, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań
2. Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology, Polish Academy of Sciences, Poznań
3. Institute of Archaeology Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Praha
4. Department of History, Faculty of Arts, Palacký University, Olomouc