A Characterisation of Mortuary Ceramics from Ban Non Wat, Northeast Thailand

Carmen Sarjeant


After numerous seasons of excavation, a long sequence of occupation has been revealed at Ban Non Wat in Northeast Thailand from the Neolithic to the Iron Age. In this paper, the results of a characterisation of ceramic vessels identified in burial contexts are provided. The studied sample included Bronze and Iron Age ceramics. The analysis involved a characterisation of morphology, surface treatment and the fabrics to uncover the technology for pottery manufacture at Ban Non Wat in prehistory. The fabric analysis of the clays and tempers was conducted with the electron microprobe. The results revealed two distinct manufacturing methods. The Bronze Age phase 2 and 3 burials were tempered with sand in almost all of the studied sherds, while fibre tempered ceramics were dominant in the assemblage in burials from Bronze Age phase 4 to the Iron Age phases. The adoption of fibre tempering appears to have taken place between Bronze Age 3 and 4 at Ban Non Wat, positing the earliest known use of this method on the Khorat Plateau at c.800 BC.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7152/bippa.v30i0.9968