Changes in cereal cultivation during the Iron Age in southern Sweden: a compilation and interpretation of the archaeobotanical material
2011 (English)In: Vegetation History and Archaeobotany, ISSN 0939-6314, E-ISSN 1617-6278, Vol. 20, no 5, 479-494 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Macrofossil data from 73 sites dating to the south Swedish Iron Age (500 b.c.-a.d. 1100) have been compiled and analyzed in order to elucidate long term changes in cereal cultivation. The analyses indicate that “permanent field” agriculture was established at the end of the Bronze Age utilizing Hordeum vulgare var vulgare as a primary crop and Triticum aestivum ssp vulgare/compactum, Triticum spelta/dicoccum/monococcum, Avena sativa and Secale cereale as secondary crops. An observed change towards the end of Roman Iron Age (1-a.d. 400) is the expansion of Secale cereale and Avena sativa cultivation. Evidence also suggests that winter sowing of the former commenced at the latest during the eighth, ninth and tenth centuries a.d. The introduction of winter sowing possibly coincided with the establishment of crop rotation agriculture. During most of the Iron Age southern Sweden displays significant regional variations with regards to cereal cultivation practice. There is however evidence that a more homogenous agriculture appeared across the investigated area from the beginning of the Viking Age (a.d. 800-1100) onwards.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Berlin: Springer-International , 2011. Vol. 20, no 5, 479-494 p.
Southern Sweden, Iron Age, Cereal cultivation, Regional compilation, Plant macrofossil material
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-46676DOI: 10.1007/s00334-011-0283-5OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-46676DiVA: diva2:440879