CRC 1266 - Scales of Transformation

Research activities 2020-2024

F3: Dynamics of Plant Economies in Ancient Societies



The Covid-19 plight changed the way we carry out research and disseminate results, though we were still able to join excavations in the field, following the strict health and safety rules. Over two weeks in October, Wiebke Kirleis, Tanja Reiser (our research assistant) and Merle Oelbüttel (our MA student) conducted archaeobotanical sampling and manual flotation at the site of Dobbin in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, where Jutta Kneisel of D3 subproject and her team investigate a Bronze and Iron Age settlement. Over a hundred samples were processed and Merle is now analysing them as part of her MA research. The F3 team also took part in the Open Day event organised at the site and shared some of the archaeobotanical knowledge and tricks with the visitors.

Flotation an altem Torfstich 2020
Fig. 1. 

Flotation an altem Torfstich
Fig. 2. 
Fig. 1.-2. Flotation at the shore of a small lake – a former peat extraction site - at Dobbin (photos: Wiebke Kirleis)

Vorführung der Flotation
Fig. 3.

Vorführung der Flotation
Fig. 4.
Fig. 3.-4. Demonstrating the flotation process at the Open Day event (photo: Wiebke Kirleis)

Sofia Filatova (our Phase 1-PhD candidate) successfully completed and defended her doctoral thesis in March. Moreover, she also prepared it for publishing and the book is already out: Filatova, S. 2020. Kakucs-Turján III: A case study of macrobotanical formation processes and plant economy from the Hungarian Bronze Age. Studien zur Archäologie in Ostmitteleuropa 20/ Studia nad Pradziejami Europy Środkowej 20. Bonn: Dr. Rudolf Habelt.

Buchcover Dissertation S. Filatova
Fig. 5. Cover of the book on Kakucs-Turján III archaeobotany by Sofia Filatova

Several other publications came out this year, led or co-authored by F3 members (see Phase 2 Publications). Most prominently, the results of our Millet Dating Programme, conducted in collaboration with subprojects G1 and D1, were published as an article in Scientific Reports DOI: 10.1038/s41598-020-70495-z. The article was picked up by several news outlets and websites:

G1’s John Meadows presented the results of the Programme at the 26th Annual Meeting of the European Association of Archaeologists.

In September, at the Deutscher Archäologie-Kongress (DAK), held virtual and hosted by Schleswig-Holstein, F3 presented a paper together with F2 and D3 on the results of archaeological, palaeoenvironmental and archaeobotanical investigations at the site of Mang de Bargen in south-west Schleswig-Holstein. 

In October, Wiebke Kirleis and Dragana Filipović were invited to give research seminars within the lecture series organised by the University of Basel, Department for Integrative Prehistory and Archaeological Science (IPNA). In November, Dragana Filipović was invited to give a talk at the 8th McDonnell Academy International Symposium of Washington University in St. Louis "The Origin of Eurasian Foodways and Cuisines: Environmental challenges and culinary solutions to good globalization in prehistory".

In November, F3 could welcome the botanist Leander Schmidt as new PhD candidate who will focus on the culinary practices of ancient societies as part of the dynamic plant economies.

New Publications