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A review of Lungshanoid sites using cluster analysis and multidimensional scaling Lo, Shyh-Charng

Abstract

Lungshanoid cultures are distributed in approximately the same area as the Yangshao Culture and the Classic Lungshan Culture in the north as well as along the southeast coast of China including Central and Southwest Taiwan. All these cultures represent a mixed or transitional culture between Yangshao and Lungshan. In the past decades, a great number of these sites have been found, excavated and classified into several cultures with different local names, such as the Ch'u-chia-ling culture, the Liang-chu culture, the T'an-shih-shan culture, the Ta-wen-k'ou culture and the Ch'ing-lien-kang culture. These sites date from the 2nd to 4th millennia B.C.. Cluster analysis is employed to review the present classification of these Lungshanoid cultures. Nineteen sites scattered throughout Southeast China are chosen as the OTU or data units and 80 characters are isolated as the variables in this Q mode test. Seven cluster emerged as a result of this statistical analysis. Cluster I, II, III and IV fit into the traditional Ch'u-chia-ling culture, Liang-chu culture, T'an-shih-shan culture and Ta-wen-k'ou culture. However, the previous Chiang-pei type of the Ch'ing-lien-kang culture is shared by cluster V and VII; the Feng-pi-t'ou site and traditional Chiang-nan type of the Ch'ing-lien-kang culture are grouped into cluster VI. The configuration from the multidimensional scaling on the first and second vectors seems that the patterning of the sites on these two vectors agree with the clusters represented by the dendrogram. Especially, the vertical dimension can be seen as a shift in pottery character and variation of implements. The probable meaning of these clusters, such as different time periods, different people, different languages, or even different technologies, has also been briefly discussed. This study presents the first attempt at the application of clustering and scaling techniques to Chinese archaeological data. More detailed study of these site reports are necessary.

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