Borneo as a half empty pot: Pottery assemblage from Liang Abu, East Kalimantan
This study is the first in-depth archaeological examination of a pottery assemblage found in the Indonesian part of Borneo Island. It aims to balance the regional knowledge of this large island, since the majority of information comes from sites located in the Malaysian northern part. Excavations in the Liang Abu rock shelter (East Kalimantan) led to the discovery and analysis of 1104 potsherds. The discussion on the upper part of the stratigraphy is based on the refitting relations between sherds. We propose some methodological improvements on the refitting analysis, based on the use of graph theory. The main ceramic layer is radiocarbon dated to 1672 ± 21 BP and 1524 ± 22 BP. Results from the petrographic analyses carried out on six sherds are presented and give a reference for future comparative investigations. Vessel morphology and stylistic features are presented, including those of red-slipped, cordmarked and incised pottery sherds. These results are discussed within the context of the settlement history in the Eastern part of Borneo and issues specific to archaeological investigations in tropical regions.
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