Recent archaeological findings at Qaranilaca Cave, Vanuabalavu Island, Fiji

Frank Thomas, Patrick Nunn, Will Osborne, Roselyn Kumar, Francis Areki, Sepeti Matararaba, David Steadman, Geoffrey Hope

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


    A large sea cave on the southeastern tip of Vanuabalavu Island, northeast Fiji was excavated and shown to have been used by humans from about 1100 cal BP with rapid accumulation of material. The cave may have been uninhabitable until sufficient sand had built up to make flooding by the sea a rare event, and a possible fall in sea-level could have contributed. With rapid cooling and sea-level fall after about 700 BP, more intensive use followed. The cave probably gained prominence in serving as a location where marine resources were cooked prior to being carried to nearby mountain-top settlements, established as a consequence of environmental change affecting coastal settlements. It fell into disuse with the re-establishment of coastal villages about 150 years ago.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)42-49
    JournalArchaeology in Oceania
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 2004


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