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Middle Dorset Communal Structures on Victoria Island

Middle Dorset Communal Structures on Victoria Island Abstract This paper describes a cluster of large communal structures in the Oxford Bay region of southeastern Victoria Island in Nunavut, Arctic Canada. The structures consist of linear stone outlines of up to 24 meters in length, and resemble the relatively well-documented Late Dorset longhouses which have been found across much of the Eastern Arctic. However, radiocarbon dates indicate that the Oxford Bay structures were built and used from roughly 200 to 600-700 cal AD, placing them in the Middle Dorset period. Elsewhere, Middle Dorset communal structures are rare, making the Oxford Bay phenomenon unique. The sites are interpreted as resulting from population aggregations associated with the fall caribou hunt, and may represent direct predecessors of the more widespread Late Dorset longhouses. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Open Archaeology de Gruyter

Middle Dorset Communal Structures on Victoria Island

Open Archaeology , Volume (1) – Nov 4, 2016

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Publisher
de Gruyter
Copyright
Copyright © 2016 by the
ISSN
2300-6560
eISSN
2300-6560
DOI
10.1515/opar-2016-0015
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Abstract This paper describes a cluster of large communal structures in the Oxford Bay region of southeastern Victoria Island in Nunavut, Arctic Canada. The structures consist of linear stone outlines of up to 24 meters in length, and resemble the relatively well-documented Late Dorset longhouses which have been found across much of the Eastern Arctic. However, radiocarbon dates indicate that the Oxford Bay structures were built and used from roughly 200 to 600-700 cal AD, placing them in the Middle Dorset period. Elsewhere, Middle Dorset communal structures are rare, making the Oxford Bay phenomenon unique. The sites are interpreted as resulting from population aggregations associated with the fall caribou hunt, and may represent direct predecessors of the more widespread Late Dorset longhouses.

Journal

Open Archaeologyde Gruyter

Published: Nov 4, 2016

References