SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: greyware CATEGORY: ceramics DEFINITION: The typical household and ceremonial ceramicware of Monte Albán and the Valley of Oaxaca, Mexico, made from a fine gray paste in the middle Pre-Classic period. Grey ware occurs throughout Monte Albán's occupation, with some variations in shape and ornamentation. In the latter periods in the Oaxaca sequence, after the collapse of Monte Albán, Mixtec grey ware was distributed through the Valley. The Zapotecs' merge with the Mixtecs is suggested by the correlation between the distribution of the Mixtecceramics in Zapotec households, c 1250-1521 AD.
Painted Grey ware
CATEGORY: ceramics DEFINITION: A potterytype characteristic of Iron Age sites in northern India, with its center of distribution in the eastern Punjab and central Ganges Valley. It was a fine, wheelmade, thin-walled ware with a gray surface decorated with simple designs of circles and pothooks, made before 500 BC. The designs were in red or black paint. The forms that occur most frequently are a shallow dish and a deeper bowl. It occurs in deposits of the later 2nd millennium and early 1st millennium BC. Many authorities believe that Painted Grey ware was the pottery used by the early Aryans in India.
CATEGORY: site DEFINITION: A large ancient city of northern India, near Bareilly in the Ganges plain that was occupied from the mid-1st millennium BC to c 1100 AD. The ramparts were built c. 500 BC and there are nine building levels up till its abandonment. Painted Grey Ware was the first pottery found; later there was Northern Polished Black Ware.
CATEGORY: site DEFINITION: The easternmost site of the Harappan civilization, northeast of Delhi in the Ganges Valley. It was a small late Harappan settlement. After a gap of unknown duration, there were later occupations which showed Painted Grey Ware and ironuse.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Arya; Aryans CATEGORY: culture; language DEFINITION: A people of the Rigveda who invaded Iran and India from the northwest in the 2nd millennium BC and who then spread east and south over the succeeding centuries. Their language was an early form of Sanskrit, an Indo-European tongue. By c 500 BC, Aryanspeech was probably established over much of the area in which Indo-Aryan languages are now spoken (the Indian subcontinent). Archaeologists have not found much to attribute to the Aryans except for some Painted Grey Ware. It is theorized that the Aryans may have been responsible for, or contributed to, the downfall of the Indus (Harappan) civilization.
CATEGORY: site DEFINITION: A site in east Punjab, Pakistan, at the foot of the Simla Hills with vestiges of two phases of the Indus Valley or Harappan civilization. It is stratified below an occupation with Painted Grey Ware, which was itself by a level with Northern Black Polished Ware.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Yin; Shang civilization CATEGORY: culture DEFINITION: The first dynasty recorded historically, thought to have ruled from the mid-16th to mid-11th century BC (Some scholars date the Shangdynasty from the mid-18th to the late 12th century BC.). However, Shang as an archaeological term must be distinguished from Shang as a dynastic one. Earlier stages of the culture known from Anyang have been recognized at sites assigned to the Erligang Phase and, still earlier, the Erlitouphase. So far virtually no inscriptions have been found at these pre-Anyang sites; even if the date of the dynasty's founding were known it would be uncertain to what extent these archaeologically defined phases fall within the Shangperiod. Thus while the type site of the Erligang phase at Zhengzhou is generally assumed to have been a Shangcapital, some archaeologists have argued that the Erlitouphase falls in the time of the Hsiadynasty, traditional predecessor of Shang. The archaeologicalclassification of Middle Shang is represented by the remains found at Erligang (Erh-li-kang) (c 1600 BC) near Cheng-chou (Zhengzhou). The Shang replaced the Hsia (Zia) in c 1500 BC and was overthrown by the Chou in 1027 BC. The Shangdynasty belongs technically to the advanced Bronze Age -- with that metal used for tools (socketed axes, knives, etc.), weapons (halberds, spears, and arrowheads) and for the highly ornamented and artistic ritual vessels. There was a fine white pottery and coarser grey wares, wheelmade and occasionally glazed, which clearly derive from the preceding Neolithicpottery. The period's claim to rank as a civilization is supported by the size and complexity of its cities and its use of writing. Two of its capitals have been identified, at modern Cheng-chou and Anyang, both in Honan province near the middle Yellow River. Rich cemeteries provide much of the evidence, particularly the royal tombs at Anyang. Building was mainly in timber on rammed earth foundations; city walls were also of rammed earth. Burial was by inhumation in pit graves with the skeletons extended, some face down. The pictographic writing appears as occasional inscriptions on the bronzes, much more commonly on the enormous number of oracle bones. The Shang was the second of the Chinese dynasties in the Protohistoric Sandaiperiod.
CATEGORY: artifact DEFINITION: Romano-British potteryindustry making polished and burnished black and grey wares (e.g. poppy head beakers) in the Upchurch Marshes of Kent in southeastern England.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Yang-shao, Yangshao CATEGORY: culture DEFINITION: The most important Neolithicculture of China, distributed along the middle course of the Yellow River in north-central China and dated to c 5000-2700 BC. Large open settlements of circular or rectangular houses slightly sunk into the ground cluster along the loess river terraces. It is distinguished by milletagriculture, coarse and painted pottery, sedentary villages, and clans. Some marks on the pottery are thought to be the beginnings of writing; pottery was handmade, painted in black and red on a yellowish slip. At first, the designs were zoomorphic, then later became abstract, geometric, or curvilinear. Coarser red and grey wares were also common.