The earliest shellmounds of the central-south Brazilian coast

Published in:

Nuclear Instruments & Methods in Physics Research Section B-Beam Interactions with Materials and Atoms 223-24,(2004) 691-694;


This paper presents a new date for one of the oldest shellmounds of the central-south Brazilian coast. This date seems to confirm three previous results obtained from two other shellmounds in the same region and formerly seen as unreliable by the archaeological community. A charcoal sample from a coastal shellmound located in the state of Rio de Janeiro, Sambaqui do Algodao, was dated by C-14-AMS to 7860 +/- 80 years BP. Besides confirming the previous ones, this new date is pulling back, by some two thousand years the consensually accepted antiquity for, the initial settlement of the central-south Brazilian coast - around 6000 years BP. The geographical and chronological proximity of those archaeological sites suggest that the initial settlement of the coast would have begun in this region rather than in the nuclear area with denser concentrations of shellmounds further to the South. It also strengthens the evidence of the possible route used by inland hunter-gatherers to reach this part of the coast. (C) 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


archaeology;; radiocarbon datings;; shellmounds;; mass spectrometry

Date of this Version

January 2004

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