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Naga ancestral sites dated back to 7th century AD

Dimapur, Thu, 02 Jul 2009 ANI

Dimapur, July 2 (ANI): In a new research, scientists have chronologically dated five ancestral settlement sites within Nagaland as belonging to the 7th century AD.


According to a report in The Morung Express, based on the study of oral tradition and folklore of the tribes of Kohima, Phek, and Mokokchung Districts, five prominent ancient settlement sites considered as important centres of population dispersal were identified.


An archaeological investigation was also carried out at the ancestral site at Chungliyimti, it informed.


Archaeological excavations were conducted at four of the ancestral settlement sites in the second phase of the project.


The archaeological investigation has revealed the dates of the sites extending back to as early as 7th century AD.


The radiocarbon dates obtained from the Beta Analytic Inc., Miami, Florida and Birbal Sahni Institute of Palaeobotany, Lucknow from all the sites under excavation is being considered as a major breakthrough in the archaeology of Northeast India.


The Anthropological Society of Nagaland has also termed as significant the discovery of an early Neolithic cave site in the vicinity of Mimi village from the Naga Ophiolite Belt area in Kiphire District bordering Myanmar.


Few Neolithic tools, ash deposits, cord marked potteries, animal bones, and a human burial were also excavated from the limestone cave.


An AMS (Accelerator Mass Spectrometry) date on the ash deposit obtained from the Beta Analytic Inc., Miami, Florida place the site within Circa Cal. BC 4460 - 4340.


The team led by Dr. Tiatoshi Jamir and two other archaeologists Dr. David Tetso and Dr. Zokho Venuh who carried out the excavation has been conducting extensive exploration on the limestone caves since the early part of January this year.


According to the archaeologists, the date is significant as far as the Neolithic sites of Eastern and Northeastern region are concerned as it further pushes back the beginning of the Neolithic era in the region.


Thus far, no Neolithic site of this antiquity has been reported from the Eastern and Northeastern region of India.


Study on the ash deposits for identification of botanical remains, animal and human remains are currently underway and it is hoped that more scientific data on the cave evidence will come to light. (ANI)


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