Lapita Burials, a New Lapita Cemetery and Post-Lapita Burials from Malakula, Northern Vanuatu, Southwest Pacific

Stuart Bedford, Hallie R Buckley, Frederique Valentin, Nancy Tayles, Numa Longga

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    During archaeological excavations investigating Lapita period sites on the islands of Uripiv and Vao off the northeast coast of Malakula, northern Vanuatu, Lapita (8) and Post-Lapita burials (7) were recovered. These are the first prehistoric burials to be reported on in detail from northern Vanuatu and the site on Uripiv Island has since been confirmed as a Lapita cemetery, one of only three identified to date. The Uripiv cemetery is situated in a separate location to the contemporary midden dumping and habitation areas which has important implications for survey and excavation strategies. The Lapita burials on Vao were situated within the defined extent of the Lapita midden. The skeletal remains provide further rare information on the mortuary practices, health and social behaviour of both Lapita populations and their descendants which demonstrates distinctive change from 3000 to 2000BP.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)26-48
    JournalJournal of Pacific Archaeology
    Volume2
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2011

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