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The purpose of ceramic petrology is to locate the source of the clay from which the pot was made. Results from these studies have far-reaching consequences for the study of early economic systems.Not only has it been shown that pottery and its contents were transported over long distances in antiquity, but also that the specialized manufacture and marketing of pottery started as far back as the first agriculture in Europe.Located in the mangrove swamps, the middens have been grouped into the Alaka Phase.The culture relied on shellfish gathering, with some grinding stones, choppers, manos, and metates.

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It is known for its ceremonial and complex burial practices involving the construction of mounds and by a high level of craftwork and pottery. CATEGORY: artifact DEFINITION: Storing prepared ceramic material (as a wet plastic clay body) to improve its working properties by thorough wetting of particles, slow compression, bacterial action (souring), and other processes.Large habitation sites, ceremonial centers and agriculture appear increasingly in Preceramic VI c 2500-1800 .There are lithic complexes in the Early Preceramic, followed by an Archaic Period with foraging populations and the beginning of domestic and ceremonial architecture. Artifacts include birdstones, blocked-end smoking pipes, boatstones, cord-marked pottery, engraved stone tablets, and hammerstones.The exceptional porcelain and stonewares of China are very well known, from as early as the Yang-Shao Neolithic culture, c 4500 SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: mean ceramic dating; mean ceramic dating formula CATEGORY: technique DEFINITION: A statistical technique devised by Stanley South for pooling the median age of manufacture for temporally significant pottery types at American Colonial sites.It is especially applicable to 18th-century sites, where many distinctive ceramic types may be expected to occur in large numbers.The mean ceramic date is found by multiplying the sum of the median dates for the manufacture of each ceramic type of the frequency of each ceramic type and dividing this figure by the total frequency of all ceramic types.

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