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SWITCHING MORTUARY CODES AND RITUAL PROGRAMS: THE DOUBLE-MONOLITH-CIRCLE FROM SINE-NGAYENE, SENEGAL

SWITCHING MORTUARY CODES AND RITUAL PROGRAMS: THE DOUBLE-MONOLITH-CIRCLE FROM SINE-NGAYENE, SENEGAL This paper addresses a number of connected issues revolving around mortuary practices in the Senegambian megalithic traditions, through the lenses of the intriguing double-monolith-circle #27 of Sine-Ngayene, also known as Diallombere. Despite more than a century of archaeological investigation, the diversity of Senegambian megalithic features is still very poorly understood. Most of the cases investigated so far have been claimed to feature single or multiple simultaneous primary burials. The presence of incomplete skeletons is generally explained by poor preservation due to soils’ corrosive effects. Monument #27, located at the center of the Sine- Ngayene cemetery, presents an unexpectedly long uselife, characterized by shifting ways of arranging humans’ skeletal remains — mortuary codes switching — as well as their associated ritual use of material culture, within the general context of secondary burial practices. Four distinct and successive cycles, spanning over ca 700 years (AD 700 – AD 1350), have been identified and the construction sequence of this complex monument deciphered. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of African Archaeology Brill

SWITCHING MORTUARY CODES AND RITUAL PROGRAMS: THE DOUBLE-MONOLITH-CIRCLE FROM SINE-NGAYENE, SENEGAL

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© Copyright 2007 by Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
1612-1651
eISSN
2191-5784
DOI
10.3213/1612-1651-10088
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This paper addresses a number of connected issues revolving around mortuary practices in the Senegambian megalithic traditions, through the lenses of the intriguing double-monolith-circle #27 of Sine-Ngayene, also known as Diallombere. Despite more than a century of archaeological investigation, the diversity of Senegambian megalithic features is still very poorly understood. Most of the cases investigated so far have been claimed to feature single or multiple simultaneous primary burials. The presence of incomplete skeletons is generally explained by poor preservation due to soils’ corrosive effects. Monument #27, located at the center of the Sine- Ngayene cemetery, presents an unexpectedly long uselife, characterized by shifting ways of arranging humans’ skeletal remains — mortuary codes switching — as well as their associated ritual use of material culture, within the general context of secondary burial practices. Four distinct and successive cycles, spanning over ca 700 years (AD 700 – AD 1350), have been identified and the construction sequence of this complex monument deciphered.

Journal

Journal of African ArchaeologyBrill

Published: Oct 25, 2007

Keywords: Megalithism; mortuary program; ritual performance; Senegambia

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