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HomeDatabasePH.D & MA thesis
Research on ancient domestic pig in China
From:Chinese Archaeology  Writer:  Date:2007-08-30
 
By Luo Yunbing     Supervisor: Yuan Jing
 
Key word:  The origin of domestic pig    early development    pig-sacrifice
 
The domestic pig, one of the most important livestock, played a great part in social life in ancient China, which was the main resource of meat for the ancient people and was widely used in many kinds of ritual activities.
In this article the author collected all data of the bone remains of Sus scrofa in ancient China and then made a synthetic study on them by applying the theories and methods of zooarchaeology and archaeology, in virtue of the methods and achievements in related disciplines, and by making the quantitative analysis. The article can be divided into four main parts, which are the standards for identifying domestic pigs, their origins, the early development of domestic pigs raising and their roles as sacrifice in ritual activities.
Firstly, the author made a retrospect about the past researches then established a series of standards for identifying Chinese domestic pigs through summing-up of native and foreign researches and by consulting practical conditions in China. Then based on the Systematic and evolution of Sus in China and on the data of their appearances and their regional diversities in many regions in Pre-Yangshao Period, systemically was made the conclusion about the path, pattern and mechanism of the origin of Chinese domestic pigs. Subsequently, the author carried on a detailed exploration on the early development of Chinese domestic pigs raising by analyzing the data on three aspects which were relative scale, measuring size, and age profile, and summarized and interpreted the paths and patterns of the development of domestic pigs raising in different regions of China, then examined the spatio-temporal diversity of their sizes, the manner and scale of pig-raising and the relationship between pig raising and planting industry. As was followed, the author performed a complete study on the bone remains of Sus left behind in all kinds of ceremonies. By putting all relative data into use, the author classified the remains, distinguished their signification, expatiated the status of pig-sacrifice in the prehistoric system of animal sacrifice, its diachronic evolution, the spatio-temporal distribution and development of such a custom, the social structure reflected in cemeteries in which the pigs were chosen as sacrifice and summarized the new characters of pig-sacrifice employing in Pre-Qin Period. Finally the conclusion was made according to all of researches and analyses above concerned.
In a word, it was the first time that the synthetic research was made about all the bone remains of Sus scrofa in Chinese zooarchaeology.

 

 

 

 
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