Cattle, consumption and causewayed enclosures: Response to Parmenter, Johnson and Outram

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This article takes issue with Parmenter, Johnson and Outram’s (2015) characterization of the faunal assemblages from causewayed enclosures as indistinguishable from those from domestic sites. Their study of bone processing
at Etton is helpful and innovative, but they neglect other aspects of assemblage
variability, while their account of Neolithic subsistence in Britain underplays
differences across space and time. A distinction can be made at
causewayed enclosures between bones that have been minimally processed
and swiftly buried, and others that have been picked over and stored in
surface middens. The latter appear to predominate at the single-circuit enclosure
at Etton, but this need not mean that feasting did not take place at the
site. Finally, the significance of a comparison of the remains at Etton with the
Linearbandkeramik site Ludwinowo 7 is questioned, as it is probable that
feasting also took place at the latter site.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalWorld Archaeology
Early online date29 Sept 2016
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • archaeology
  • Neolithic
  • Neolithic Europe
  • causewayed enclosures
  • Neolithic Britain
  • feasting
  • subsistence economy


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