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Welcome to African Archaeology!

The Journal of African Archaeology is an international peer-reviewed periodical appearing half-yearly since 2003. It publishes original papers addressing recent research and developments in African archaeology and related disciplines. The journal's main purpose is to provide scholars and students with a new pan-African forum for discussing relevant topics on the cultural dynamics of past African societies.

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Vol. 4 (1) 2006

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C. Magnavita, P. Breunig, J. Ameje & M. Posselt

Zilum: A Mid-First Millennium BC Fortified Settlement near Lake Chad

Journal of African Archaeology, Vol. 4 (1), 2006, pages 153-169, DOI 10.3213/1612-1651-10068


Abstract
In the last few years, archaeological investigations carried out at the mid-first millennium BC settlement site of Zilum, Nigeria, have integrated magnetic survey, a geophysical technique, as an additional source of information. Amongst other results, the magnetic survey revealed the presence of an archaeological feature that encloses the entire settlement area. Excavations show that this feature consists of a ditch. Dimensions and shape suggest that its function was to restrict access to the settlement. Although direct evidence is missing, the ditch was most probably accompanied by an earth rampart or wall, now completely decayed. Based on the available data, it seems likely that Zilum was a fortified settlement.

Résumé
Au cours de ces dernières années, les études archéologiques du site d'habitat de Zilum au Nigeria, datant de la moitié du premier millénaire BC, ont inclus la prospection magnétique, une technique géophysique, comme source d'information supplémentaire. Entre autres résultats, la prospection magnétique a permis de détecter la présence d'une structure entourant l'ensemble du site d'habitat. Des fouilles archéologiques ont montré qu'il s'agissait d'un fossé. Les dimensions et la forme du fossé indiquent que sa fonction était de limiter l'accès à l'habitat. Bien que l'on manque de preuves directes, on peut penser que le fossé original était accompagné d'une levée de terre ou d'une enceinte, aujourd'hui complètement désagrégée. En se basant sur les données disponibles, il est vraisemblable que Zilum fut un habitat fortifié.




Keywords: ditch, fortification, Gajiganna, settlement, Stone Age


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Editorial Board

Editors:
Sonja Magnavita, Peter Breunig

Book Review Editor:
Katie Manning, UK

Editorial Advisory Board:
Graham Connah, Australia
Shadreck Chirikure, South Africa
A. Catherine D'Andrea, Canada
Manfred K.H. Eggert, Germany
Elena Garcea, Italy
Diane Gifford-Gonzalez, USA
Timothy Insoll, UK
Tom Huffman, South Africa
Eric Huysecom, Switzerland
David Killick, USA
Savino di Lernia, Italy
Alexandre Livingstone Smith, Belgium
Scott MacEachern, USA
David Mattingly, UK
Susan Keech McIntosh, USA
David W. Phillipson, UK
Gilbert Pwiti, Zimbabwe
Peter Robertshaw, USA
Robert Vernet, France
Lyn Wadley, South Africa

Copy Editors:
Nicolas Gestrich, UK
Sam Nixon, UK
Gaby Franke, Germany
Annabelle Gallin, France
Richard Byer, Germany

Editorial Assistance:
Anna Rybar, Germany
Carlos Magnavita, Germany


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