ISSN 0253-2778

CN 34-1054/N

Open AccessOpen Access JUSTC Earth and Space Sciences 11 May 2022

Phytolith analysis of Naminan archaeological site in Jinghong City, Yunnan Province

Cite this:
https://doi.org/10.52396/JUSTC-2021-0265
More Information
  • Author Bio:

    Jixiao Zhang received his bachelor's degree from the Jilin University, MS degree from the Nanjing Institute of Geology and Paleontology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, and PhD degree from the Institute of Earth Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences. He worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Science and Technology of China from 2019 to 2021. His main research areas are Quaternary environment and climate change and their relationship with human activities

    Weiming Wang received his BS degree in Marine Geology from the Tongji University in 1982, and his PhD degree in Palaeontology and Stratigraphy from the Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology (NIGPAS), Chinese Academy of Sciences in 1990. He is a professor at the State Key Laboratory of Palaeobiology and Stratigraphy, NIGPAS. His main research interests include Cenozoic palynology, phytoliths and stratigraphy

  • Corresponding author: E-mail: zjx89@ustc.edu.cn; E-mail: wmwang@nigpas.ac.cn
  • Available Online: 11 May 2022
  • The global climate underwent tremendous changes during the transition from the Last Glacial Period to the Holocene. At almost the same time, human society transitioned from the Paleolithic to the Neolithic. Therefore, the relationship between climate change and human activity during this period has become a research hotspot.Yunnan Province is a region with a great abundance of Paleolithic archaeological sites in China; however, Neolithic sites are relatively few. There has also been relatively little research on paleoclimatic conditions during the Paleolithic-Neolithic transition in Yunnan. Phytoliths, as a highly durable and long-lasting form of plant microfossils, can be an important means for reconstructing paleoclimates. In this study, we examined the Naminan site in Jinghong, which was occupied during the transitional period from the Paleolithic to Neolithic. Based on our analysis of the phytolith record at Naminan, we reconstructed the climatic conditions for each of the archaeological strata and discussed possible human activities. The results show that Naminan experienced a sequence of warming followed by cooling and warming, which is consistent with previous paleoclimate research in other areas of Yunnan Province.
      Plant microfossil phytolith from archaeological site in Yunnan reveals local climate change more than 10000 years ago.
    The global climate underwent tremendous changes during the transition from the Last Glacial Period to the Holocene. At almost the same time, human society transitioned from the Paleolithic to the Neolithic. Therefore, the relationship between climate change and human activity during this period has become a research hotspot.Yunnan Province is a region with a great abundance of Paleolithic archaeological sites in China; however, Neolithic sites are relatively few. There has also been relatively little research on paleoclimatic conditions during the Paleolithic-Neolithic transition in Yunnan. Phytoliths, as a highly durable and long-lasting form of plant microfossils, can be an important means for reconstructing paleoclimates. In this study, we examined the Naminan site in Jinghong, which was occupied during the transitional period from the Paleolithic to Neolithic. Based on our analysis of the phytolith record at Naminan, we reconstructed the climatic conditions for each of the archaeological strata and discussed possible human activities. The results show that Naminan experienced a sequence of warming followed by cooling and warming, which is consistent with previous paleoclimate research in other areas of Yunnan Province.
    • A Paleolithic-Neolithic archaeological site (Naminan) in Yunnan Province is studied in this research.
    • Phytolith record at Nanminan site are used to reconstructed the climatic conditions.
    • Naminan experienced a sequence of warming followed by cooling followed warming.

  • loading
  • [1]
    Wei Z D, Fang X Q, Su Y. Climate change, fiscal balance and dynastical cycles in China over the past 2000 years. Quaternary Sciences, 2020, 40: 1180–1192. doi: 10.11928/j.issn.1001-7410.2020.05.08
    [2]
    Zhang D, Jim C, Lin C, et al. Climate change, social unrest and dynastic transition in ancient China. Chinese Science Bulletin, 2005, 50: 137–144. doi: 10.1007/BF02897517
    [3]
    Zhang E L, Sun W W, Liu E F, et al. Vegetation change reconstructed by a stable isotope record of elemental carbon from Lake Erhai, Southwest China since the Last Glacial Maximum. Quaternary Sciences, 2017, 37: 1027–1036. doi: 10.11928/j.issn.1001-7410.2017.05.10
    [4]
    Dong G H, Li R, Lu M X, et al. Evolution of human–environmental interactions in China from the Late Paleolithic to the Bronze Age. Progress in Physical Geography:Earth and Environment, 2020, 44: 233–250. doi: 10.1177/0309133319876802
    [5]
    Shi H Y, Chen J. Characteristics of climate change and its relationship with land use/cover change in Yunnan Province, China. International Journal of Climatology, 2018, 38: 2520–2537. doi: 10.1002/joc.5404
    [6]
    Zhang J X, Xu H, Gosling W D, et al. Vegetation and climate evolution during the Last Glaciation at Tengchong in Yunnan Province, Southwest China. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 2019, 514: 441–452. doi: 10.1016/j.palaeo.2018.11.008
    [7]
    Yang F, Wan Y, Hu C C. Yunnan Archaeology: 1979—2009. Kuming: Yunnan People's Publishing House, 2010 (in Chinese).
    [8]
    Nawaz M A. Phytolith formation in plants: From soil to cell. Plants, 2019, 8: 249. doi: 10.3390/plants8080249
    [9]
    Luo W H, Gu C G, Yang Y Z, et al. Phytoliths reveal the earliest interplay of rice and broomcorn millet at the site of Shuangdun (ca 7. 3–6. 8 ka BP) in the middle Huai River valley, China. Journal of Archaeological Science, 2019, 102: 26–34. doi: 10.1016/j.jas.2018.12.004
    [10]
    Strömberg C A E, Dunn R E, Crifò C, et al. Phytoliths in paleoecology: Analytical considerations, current use, and future directions. In: Croft D, Su D, Simpson S, editors. Methods in Paleoecology. Cham, Switzerland: Springer, 2018: 235–287.
    [11]
    Liu L D, Jie D M, Liu H Y, et al. An evaluation of soil phytoliths for reconstructing plant communities and palaeoclimate in the northern temperate region. European Journal of Soil Science, 2021, 72: 900–917. doi: 10.1111/ejss.13029
    [12]
    Esteban I, Marean C W, Cowling R M, et al. Paleoenvironments and plant availability during MIS 6 to MIS 3 on the edge of the Paleo-Agulhas Plain (south coast, South Africa) as indicated by phytolith analysis at Pinnacle Point. Quaternary Science Reviews, 2020, 235: 105667. doi: 10.1016/j.quascirev.2019.02.022
    [13]
    Gao Y H, Li Z L, Zhu R X, et al. Quantitative reconstruction of Holocene millennial-scale precipitation in the Asian monsoon margin of northwest China, revealed by phytolith assemblages from calcareous root tubes in the Tengger Desert. Climate Dynamic, 2020, 55: 755–770. doi: 10.1007/s00382-020-05293-4
    [14]
    Zuo X X, Lu H Y, Li Z, et al. Phytolith records of flourishing early Holocene Pooideae linked to an 8.2 ka cold event in subtropical China. Elementa:Science of the Anthropocene, 2020, 8 (1): 077. doi: 10.1525/elementa.077
    [15]
    Lu H Y, Wu N Q, Liu K B, et al. Phytoliths as quantitative indicators for the reconstruction of past environmental conditions in China II: paleoenvironmental reconstruction in the Loess Plateau. Quaternary Science Reviews, 2007, 26: 759–772. doi: 10.1016/j.quascirev.2006.10.006
    [16]
    Li H M, Zuo X X, Kang L H, et al. Prehistoric agriculture development in the Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau, southwest China: Archaeobotanical evidence. Science China Earth Sciences, 2016, 59 (8): 1562–1573. doi: 10.1007/s11430-016-5292-x
    [17]
    Martello R D, Li X R, Fuller D Q. Two-season agriculture and irrigated rice during the Dian: radiocarbon dates and archaeobotanical remains from Dayingzhuang, Yunnan, Southwest China. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences, 2021, 13: 62. doi: 10.1007/s12520-020-01268-y
    [18]
    Li X R. The present situation of archaeology in Yunnan Province. Cultural Relics in Southern China, 2016 (1): 166–170. doi: 10.3969/j.issn.1004-6275.2016.01.025
    [19]
    Zuo X X, Lu H Y, Huan X J, et al. Influence of different extraction methods on prehistoric phytolith radiocarbon dating. Quaternary International, 2019, 528: 4–8. doi: 10.1016/j.quaint.2018.12.002
    [20]
    International Committee for Phytolith Taxonomy (ICPT). International Code for Phytolith Nomenclature 2.0 (ICPN 2. 0). Annals of Botany, 2019, 124 (2): 189–199. doi: 10.1093/aob/mcz064
    [21]
    Piperno D R, Pearsall D M, Benfer R A, et al. Phytolith morphology. Science, 1999, 283 (5406): 1265. doi: 10.1126/science.283.5406.1265c
    [22]
    Morgan-Edel K D, Boston P J, Spilde M N, et al. Phytoliths (plant-derived mineral bodies) as geobiological and climatic indicators in arid environments. New Mexico Geology, 2015, 37: 3–20.
    [23]
    Wang W M, Liu J L, Zhou X D. Climate indexes of phytoliths from Homo erectus’ cave deposits in Nanjing. Chinese Science Bulletin, 2003, 48 (18): 2005–2009. doi: 10.1007/BF03183995
    [24]
    Liu J L, Tang L Y, Qiao Y L, et al. Late Quaternary vegetation history at Menghai, Yunnan Province, southwest China. Journal of Biogeography, 1986, 13: 399–418. doi: 10.2307/2844965
    [25]
    Kuang M S, Xie S Y, Zeng Y, et al. Study on the paleovegetation and palaeoclimate since late Pleistocene in the Diancang mountain area in Dali of Yunnan Province. Journal of Southwest China Normal University, 2002, 27 (5): 759–765. doi: 10.13718/j.cnki.xsxb.2002.05.029
    [26]
    Peng J L, Wang S M. Ostracodes of the Heqing Basin, Yunnan and environmental changes during the last 150000 years. Journal of Lake Science, 2003, 15 (1): 1–10.
    [27]
    Wang Q, Yang X D, Anderson N J, et al. Diatom response to climate forcing of a deep, alpine lake (Lugu Hu, Yunnan, SW China) during the Last Glacial Maximum and its implications for understanding regional monsoon variability. Quaternary Science Reviews, 2014, 86: 1–12. doi: 10.1016/j.quascirev.2013.12.024
    [28]
    Pearsall D M, Piperno D R, Dinan E H, et al. Distinguishing rice (Oryza sativa Poaceae) from wild Oryza species through phytolith analysis: Results of preliminary research. Economic Botany, 1995, 49: 183–196. doi: 10.1007/BF02862923
    [29]
    Zhao Z J, Piperno D R. Late Pleistocene/Holocene environments in the middle Yangtze River Valley, China and rice (Oryza sativa L.) domestication:The phytolith evidence. Geoarchaeology, 2000, 15: 203–222. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1520-6548(200002)15:2<203::AID-GEA5>3.0.CO;2-J
    [30]
    Sun J C, Cao G L, Ma J, et al. Comparative genetic structure within single-origin pairs of rice (Oryza sativa L.) landraces from in situ and ex situ conservation programs in Yunnan of China using microsatellite markers. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution, 2012, 59: 1611–1623. doi: 10.1007/s10722-011-9786-2
    [31]
    Fenwick R, Lentfer C J, Weisler M I. Palm reading: a pilot study to discriminate phytoliths of four Arecaceae (palmae) taxa. Journal of Archaeological Science, 2011, 38 (9): 2190–2199. doi: 10.1016/j.jas.2011.03.016
    [32]
    Madella M, Jones M K, Goldberg P, et al. The exploitation of plant resources by Neanderthals in Amud Cave (Israel): The evidence from phytolith studies. Journal of Archaeological Science, 2002, 29: 703–719. doi: 10.1006/jasc.2001.0743
    [33]
    Gaspar M, Rodrigo B, Lauren Raz. Phytoliths as a tool for archaeobotanical, paleobotanical and palaeoecological studies in Amazonian palms. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society, 2016, 182 (2): 348–360. doi: 10.1111/boj.12438
  • 加载中

Catalog

    Figure  1.  The outside view of the Naminan site.

    Figure  2.  Stratigraphic sequence of the Naminan site.

    Figure  3.  Micrographs of phytolith morphologies at the Naminan site:

    Figure  4.  Phytolith diagram of Naminan site.

    Figure  5.  Warm index and humid index in the different layers of Naminan cave.

    [1]
    Wei Z D, Fang X Q, Su Y. Climate change, fiscal balance and dynastical cycles in China over the past 2000 years. Quaternary Sciences, 2020, 40: 1180–1192. doi: 10.11928/j.issn.1001-7410.2020.05.08
    [2]
    Zhang D, Jim C, Lin C, et al. Climate change, social unrest and dynastic transition in ancient China. Chinese Science Bulletin, 2005, 50: 137–144. doi: 10.1007/BF02897517
    [3]
    Zhang E L, Sun W W, Liu E F, et al. Vegetation change reconstructed by a stable isotope record of elemental carbon from Lake Erhai, Southwest China since the Last Glacial Maximum. Quaternary Sciences, 2017, 37: 1027–1036. doi: 10.11928/j.issn.1001-7410.2017.05.10
    [4]
    Dong G H, Li R, Lu M X, et al. Evolution of human–environmental interactions in China from the Late Paleolithic to the Bronze Age. Progress in Physical Geography:Earth and Environment, 2020, 44: 233–250. doi: 10.1177/0309133319876802
    [5]
    Shi H Y, Chen J. Characteristics of climate change and its relationship with land use/cover change in Yunnan Province, China. International Journal of Climatology, 2018, 38: 2520–2537. doi: 10.1002/joc.5404
    [6]
    Zhang J X, Xu H, Gosling W D, et al. Vegetation and climate evolution during the Last Glaciation at Tengchong in Yunnan Province, Southwest China. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology, 2019, 514: 441–452. doi: 10.1016/j.palaeo.2018.11.008
    [7]
    Yang F, Wan Y, Hu C C. Yunnan Archaeology: 1979—2009. Kuming: Yunnan People's Publishing House, 2010 (in Chinese).
    [8]
    Nawaz M A. Phytolith formation in plants: From soil to cell. Plants, 2019, 8: 249. doi: 10.3390/plants8080249
    [9]
    Luo W H, Gu C G, Yang Y Z, et al. Phytoliths reveal the earliest interplay of rice and broomcorn millet at the site of Shuangdun (ca 7. 3–6. 8 ka BP) in the middle Huai River valley, China. Journal of Archaeological Science, 2019, 102: 26–34. doi: 10.1016/j.jas.2018.12.004
    [10]
    Strömberg C A E, Dunn R E, Crifò C, et al. Phytoliths in paleoecology: Analytical considerations, current use, and future directions. In: Croft D, Su D, Simpson S, editors. Methods in Paleoecology. Cham, Switzerland: Springer, 2018: 235–287.
    [11]
    Liu L D, Jie D M, Liu H Y, et al. An evaluation of soil phytoliths for reconstructing plant communities and palaeoclimate in the northern temperate region. European Journal of Soil Science, 2021, 72: 900–917. doi: 10.1111/ejss.13029
    [12]
    Esteban I, Marean C W, Cowling R M, et al. Paleoenvironments and plant availability during MIS 6 to MIS 3 on the edge of the Paleo-Agulhas Plain (south coast, South Africa) as indicated by phytolith analysis at Pinnacle Point. Quaternary Science Reviews, 2020, 235: 105667. doi: 10.1016/j.quascirev.2019.02.022
    [13]
    Gao Y H, Li Z L, Zhu R X, et al. Quantitative reconstruction of Holocene millennial-scale precipitation in the Asian monsoon margin of northwest China, revealed by phytolith assemblages from calcareous root tubes in the Tengger Desert. Climate Dynamic, 2020, 55: 755–770. doi: 10.1007/s00382-020-05293-4
    [14]
    Zuo X X, Lu H Y, Li Z, et al. Phytolith records of flourishing early Holocene Pooideae linked to an 8.2 ka cold event in subtropical China. Elementa:Science of the Anthropocene, 2020, 8 (1): 077. doi: 10.1525/elementa.077
    [15]
    Lu H Y, Wu N Q, Liu K B, et al. Phytoliths as quantitative indicators for the reconstruction of past environmental conditions in China II: paleoenvironmental reconstruction in the Loess Plateau. Quaternary Science Reviews, 2007, 26: 759–772. doi: 10.1016/j.quascirev.2006.10.006
    [16]
    Li H M, Zuo X X, Kang L H, et al. Prehistoric agriculture development in the Yunnan-Guizhou Plateau, southwest China: Archaeobotanical evidence. Science China Earth Sciences, 2016, 59 (8): 1562–1573. doi: 10.1007/s11430-016-5292-x
    [17]
    Martello R D, Li X R, Fuller D Q. Two-season agriculture and irrigated rice during the Dian: radiocarbon dates and archaeobotanical remains from Dayingzhuang, Yunnan, Southwest China. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences, 2021, 13: 62. doi: 10.1007/s12520-020-01268-y
    [18]
    Li X R. The present situation of archaeology in Yunnan Province. Cultural Relics in Southern China, 2016 (1): 166–170. doi: 10.3969/j.issn.1004-6275.2016.01.025
    [19]
    Zuo X X, Lu H Y, Huan X J, et al. Influence of different extraction methods on prehistoric phytolith radiocarbon dating. Quaternary International, 2019, 528: 4–8. doi: 10.1016/j.quaint.2018.12.002
    [20]
    International Committee for Phytolith Taxonomy (ICPT). International Code for Phytolith Nomenclature 2.0 (ICPN 2. 0). Annals of Botany, 2019, 124 (2): 189–199. doi: 10.1093/aob/mcz064
    [21]
    Piperno D R, Pearsall D M, Benfer R A, et al. Phytolith morphology. Science, 1999, 283 (5406): 1265. doi: 10.1126/science.283.5406.1265c
    [22]
    Morgan-Edel K D, Boston P J, Spilde M N, et al. Phytoliths (plant-derived mineral bodies) as geobiological and climatic indicators in arid environments. New Mexico Geology, 2015, 37: 3–20.
    [23]
    Wang W M, Liu J L, Zhou X D. Climate indexes of phytoliths from Homo erectus’ cave deposits in Nanjing. Chinese Science Bulletin, 2003, 48 (18): 2005–2009. doi: 10.1007/BF03183995
    [24]
    Liu J L, Tang L Y, Qiao Y L, et al. Late Quaternary vegetation history at Menghai, Yunnan Province, southwest China. Journal of Biogeography, 1986, 13: 399–418. doi: 10.2307/2844965
    [25]
    Kuang M S, Xie S Y, Zeng Y, et al. Study on the paleovegetation and palaeoclimate since late Pleistocene in the Diancang mountain area in Dali of Yunnan Province. Journal of Southwest China Normal University, 2002, 27 (5): 759–765. doi: 10.13718/j.cnki.xsxb.2002.05.029
    [26]
    Peng J L, Wang S M. Ostracodes of the Heqing Basin, Yunnan and environmental changes during the last 150000 years. Journal of Lake Science, 2003, 15 (1): 1–10.
    [27]
    Wang Q, Yang X D, Anderson N J, et al. Diatom response to climate forcing of a deep, alpine lake (Lugu Hu, Yunnan, SW China) during the Last Glacial Maximum and its implications for understanding regional monsoon variability. Quaternary Science Reviews, 2014, 86: 1–12. doi: 10.1016/j.quascirev.2013.12.024
    [28]
    Pearsall D M, Piperno D R, Dinan E H, et al. Distinguishing rice (Oryza sativa Poaceae) from wild Oryza species through phytolith analysis: Results of preliminary research. Economic Botany, 1995, 49: 183–196. doi: 10.1007/BF02862923
    [29]
    Zhao Z J, Piperno D R. Late Pleistocene/Holocene environments in the middle Yangtze River Valley, China and rice (Oryza sativa L.) domestication:The phytolith evidence. Geoarchaeology, 2000, 15: 203–222. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1520-6548(200002)15:2<203::AID-GEA5>3.0.CO;2-J
    [30]
    Sun J C, Cao G L, Ma J, et al. Comparative genetic structure within single-origin pairs of rice (Oryza sativa L.) landraces from in situ and ex situ conservation programs in Yunnan of China using microsatellite markers. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution, 2012, 59: 1611–1623. doi: 10.1007/s10722-011-9786-2
    [31]
    Fenwick R, Lentfer C J, Weisler M I. Palm reading: a pilot study to discriminate phytoliths of four Arecaceae (palmae) taxa. Journal of Archaeological Science, 2011, 38 (9): 2190–2199. doi: 10.1016/j.jas.2011.03.016
    [32]
    Madella M, Jones M K, Goldberg P, et al. The exploitation of plant resources by Neanderthals in Amud Cave (Israel): The evidence from phytolith studies. Journal of Archaeological Science, 2002, 29: 703–719. doi: 10.1006/jasc.2001.0743
    [33]
    Gaspar M, Rodrigo B, Lauren Raz. Phytoliths as a tool for archaeobotanical, paleobotanical and palaeoecological studies in Amazonian palms. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society, 2016, 182 (2): 348–360. doi: 10.1111/boj.12438

    Article Metrics

    Article views (383) PDF downloads(1967)
    Proportional views

    /

    DownLoad:  Full-Size Img  PowerPoint
    Return
    Return