Agriculture in Tongan Prehistory: An Archaeobotanical Perspective

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AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT IN

TONGAN PREHISTORY: AN

ARCHAEOBOTANICAL

PERSPECTIVE

A Dissertation

by

ELLA USSHER

A thesis submitted for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy

at the Australian National University

June 2015

School of Culture, History and Language

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DECLARATION

The research presented here is based on original fieldwork, as well as analysis of micro- and macrobotanical assemblages excavated by the author on Tongatapu, Kingdom of

Tonga.

I certify that, except where it is stated otherwise, this dissertation is the result of my own original investigation.

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Acknowledgements

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Abstract

This thesis presents the results of an archaeobotanical study of agricultural development in the Kingdom of Tonga. Prior to this study, there has been no direct archaeological evidence for agriculture in Tongan prehistory. Through the implementation of systematic archaeobotanical techniques, this study aimed to fill this gap and address two key research questions: 1) whether early colonisers were dependent on introduced crops, or if human dispersal was fuelled predominantly by the exploitation of natural resources; and 2) whether archaeobotanical data can provide new evidence to examine the role of agriculture within the development of the maritime chiefdom in Tonga through agroecological modelling.

This research was divided into two main phases. The first involved the construction of a comprehensive comparative collection for macrobotanical (vegetative storage and fruit parenchyma and endocarp), and microbotanical (starch) components of economic and supplementary plant taxa from Tonga. As part of this, a study of the morphological attributes of starch and parenchyma was conducted that incorporated multivariate statistical analyses of diagnostic attributes. Two methods for taxonomic classification were suggested: automated classification using Discriminant Function Analysis (DFA) of starch, and the use of an Identification Flowchart Key for parenchyma.

In the second phase of research, archaeobotanical data from three sites on Tongatapu, representing three different time periods in Tongan prehistory, is presented. Macrobotanical and microbotanical remains were extracted from these sites using flotation, wet-sieving and bulk stratigraphic sampling and compared to a comprehensive reference collection using a combination of SEM and light microscopy. Sampled cultural deposits at Talasiu (2750-2650 cal BP), Leka (1300-1000 cal BP) and Heketa (800-600 cal BP) present new insights into the role of plant taxa within late-Lapita, the Formative Period, and early stages of the Classic Tu’i Tonga chiefdom. Modelling using techniques from Human Ecology, specifically agroecology, replicated past production systems using measures of system efficiency such as nutritional value of taxa, labour investment and productivity in terms of yields. These were compared to expectations based on current literature, and a revised chronology for agricultural development and links to social complexity is presented.

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batatas) by 600 BP, transported via East Polynesia through the extensive trade networks of the developing Tongan state. Modelling past production systems linked decreased system nutritional efficiency over time to horticultural specialisation in primary crops and increasingly centralised government on Tongatapu. Critically, this analysis modelled the high nutritional efficiency of Lapita subsistence, and linked this to the division of labour investment between both economic and supplementary species within a decentralised social hierarchy.

Keywords: archaeobotany, starch, parenchyma, microfossils, Tonga, archaeology, agriculture, agroecology, production systems, Lapita

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements iii

Abstract iv

Table of Contents vi

List of Tables ix

List of Figures xiii

List of Abbreviations xvii

Chapter 1 Introduction 1

Research aims and objectives 1

Theoretical framework 5

Thesis organisation 6

Chapter 2 Tongan Agriculture in the Pacific Context 9

Research to date 9

Geographic and climatic limitations to agricultural modelling 10

Ethno-historic accounts of plant cultivation in Tonga: 12

Archaeobotany of cultigens in the Pacific 20

Tonga in the Pacific: A summary 30

PART ONE- AN ARCHAEOBOTANICAL COMPARATIVE COLLECTION FOR

TONGA 32

Chapter 3 Reviewing Microbotanical Analysis 33

Biology of starch and identification potential 33

Starch taphonomy 35

Modern starch contamination 42

Sampling strategies and extraction techniques 44

Chapter 4 Reviewing Parenchyma 48

Fresh and charred parenchyma morphology 48

Taphonomic factors affecting macrobotanical preservation 49

Collection and sampling of parenchyma 52

Parenchyma identification 54

Chapter 5 Comparative Collection and Morphometric Studies of Pacific Cultigens 57

Species selection 57

Field collection 58

Laboratory processing of samples 59

Starch processing 59

Histology 60

Experimental charring 61

Recording 62

Light microscopy 62

Scanning Electron Microscopy 62

Morphology of native starch 63

Starch morphology 64

Multivariate statistical analysis of starch 76

Morphology of vegetative storage parenchyma 82

Morphological analysis of fresh samples 82

Description of charcoal 100

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PART TWO- DEVELOPMENT OF PREHISTORIC AGRICULTURE IN TONGA 112

Chapter 6 Sites and Field Sampling Strategy 113

Methodology for field sampling of archaeological sediments 113

Site selection 113

Field methods 114

Site descriptions 116

Talasiu (TO-Mu-2) 116

Leka (J17) 117

Heketa (TO-Nt-2) 118

Stratigraphic descriptions 119

Talasiu (TO-Mu-2) 119

Leka (J17) 120

Heketa (TO-Nt-2) 122

AMS dating of cultural contexts 124

Chapter 7 Laboratory Methods 126

Microbotanical analysis: Starch residues 126

Experimentation with starch extraction techniques 126

Laboratory processing: Revised starch extraction protocol 132

Light Microscopy 134

Archaeological starch classification: Assemblage-typology approach 134 Archaeological starch classification: Multivariate statistical analysis 135

Macrobotanical analysis: Charred parenchyma and endocarp 136

Laboratory analysis 136

Chapter 8 Results 138

Macrobotanical analysis 138

Quantification of charcoal 138

Parenchyma distribution and identification: Talasiu TP2 case study 142

Microbotanical analysis 144

Extraction, quantification and distribution 144

Identification: Assemblage-typology approach 147

Identification: Multivariate statistics—Discriminant Function Analysis 150

Comparison of modern Pacific production systems 160

Nutrition 161

Labour investment 178

Outputs 187

Output to input ratios: Efficiency calculation 194

System efficiency comparison and system classification 202

Comparison of prehistoric production systems 209

Nutritional comparison of archaeological species 209

Efficiency comparison of archaeological species and production systems 215

Chapter 9 Discussion 221

Timing and nature of plant introductions into Tonga 221

Spondias dulcis— Anacardiaceae 222

Alocasia macrorrhiza— Araceae 222

Amorphophallus paeoniifolius— Araceae 223

Colocasia esculenta— Araceae 223

Cyrtosperma merkusii— Araceae 224

Cocos nucifera— Arecaceae 225

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Dioscorea spp.— Dioscoreaceae 226

Inocarpus fagifer— Fabaceae 227

Barringtonia asiatica— Lechythidaceae 228

Artocarpus altilis— Moraceae 228

Musa spp.— Musaceae 229

Piper methysticum— Piperaceae 230

Curcuma longa and Zingiber spp.— Zingiberaceae 231

Modelling archaeological production systems 232

Feasibility of modelling 232

Expected modelling outcomes 234

Modelling Talasiu (TO-Mu-2) 240

Modelling Leka (J17) 244

Modelling Heketa (TO-Nt-2) 247

Comparison of expected and modelled outcomes 250

Specialisation and system efficiency 255

Contamination at Leka and Heketa 256

Linking archaeobotanical data to island colonisation and social complexity 257

Chapter 10 Conclusion 260

Meeting research aims and objectives 260

Future recommendations 267

Micro- and macrobotanical techniques 267

Archaeobotanical research in Tonga and the Pacific 269

Bibliography 271

Appendix A- Species in Reference Collection 294

Appendix B- Description of Parenchyma 296

Appendix C- Starch Images 326

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List of Tables

TABLE 2.1LIST OF SPECIES RECORDED IN EARLY ETHNO-HISTORIC ACCOUNTS FROM TONGA. ... 19

TABLE 5.1HILUM FISSURING OF REFERENCE SPECIES ... 66

TABLE 5.2THREE-DIMENSIONAL SHAPES OF REFERENCE SPECIES ... 68

TABLE 5.3SUMMARY OF STARCH MORPHOLOGY WITHIN REFERENCE COLLECTION ... 74

TABLE 5.4 DESCRIPTION OF METRIC AND BINARY VARIABLES USED DURING DISCRIMINANT FUNCTION ANALYSIS... 76

TABLE 5.5SPECIES INCLUDED IN CENTRIC AND ECCENTRIC DATASETS FOR TONGAN ANALYSIS ... 78

TABLE 5.6GROUND TISSUE CELL SHAPES OF TAXA IN REFERENCE COLLECTION ... 84

TABLE 5.7GROUND TISSUE CELL DIMENSIONS OF TAXA IN THE REFERENCE COLLECTION ... 84

TABLE 5.8VASCULAR TISSUE ARRANGEMENTS OF TAXA IN REFERENCE COLLECTION ... 91

TABLE 5.9SUMMARY OF PARENCHYMA MORPHOLOGY WITHIN REFERENCE COLLECTION ... 96

TABLE 5.10 DESCRIPTION OF MORPHOLOGICAL MODIFICATION WITHIN GROUND TISSUE OF CHARRED SAMPLES IN THE COMPARATIVE COLLECTION ... 103

TABLE 5.11 DESCRIPTION OF MORPHOLOGICAL MODIFICATION WITHIN VASCULAR TISSUE OF CHARRED SAMPLES IN THE COMPARATIVE COLLECTION ... 104

TABLE 8.1SUMMARY OF TOTAL MACROBOTANICAL ASSEMBLAGES FROM ALL SITES AND TEST-PITS ... 139

TABLE 8.2QUANTIFICATION OF COCONUT ENDOCARP FROM ALL SITES AND TEST-PITS ... 140

TABLE 8.3QUANTIFICATION OF OTHER ENDOCARP FROM ALL TEST UNITS ... 141

TABLE 8.4QUANTIFICATION OF WOOD CHARCOAL AND PARENCHYMA FROM ALL TEST UNITS ... 142

TABLE 8.5DISTRIBUTION AND IDENTIFICATION OF PARENCHYMA EXTRACTED FROM TALASIU TP2 ... 144

TABLE 8.6OVERALL QUANTITIES (COUNTS) OF STARCH EXTRACTED FROM ALL SAMPLED TEST UNITS AT TALASIU (TO-MU-2) ... 145

TABLE 8.7DISTRIBUTION OF STARCH COUNTS WITHIN TALASIU TP2 ... 146

TABLE 8.8DISTRIBUTION OF STARCH COUNTS WITHIN LEKA TP2 ... 146

TABLE 8.9DISTRIBUTION OF STARCH COUNTS WITHIN LEKA TP4 ... 147

TABLE 8.10DISTRIBUTION OF STARCH COUNTS WITHIN HEKETA TP3 ... 147

TABLE 8.11TABLE OUTLINING SUGGESTED FAMILY OF ORIGIN OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH TYPES FROM TALASIU TP2. ... 149

TABLE 8.12 DISTRIBUTION OF PRELIMINARY IDENTIFICATIONS WITHIN TALASIU TP2 USING THE ASSEMBLAGE-TYPOLOGY APPROACH ... 150

TABLE 8.13 LEVELS OF CONFIDENCE FROM DFA CLASSIFICATION OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH FROM TALASIU TP2.NBHIGH CONFIDENCE (BLACK), MODERATED CONFIDENCE (MEDIUM GREY) AND LOW CONFIDENCE (LIGHT GREY) ... 153

TABLE 8.14 FINAL TABLE DOCUMENTING SPECIES REPRESENTED BY ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH WITHIN TALASIU TP2NBPRESENCE INDICATED BY BLACK SQUARES ... 155

TABLE 8.15 LEVELS OF CONFIDENCE FROM DFA CLASSIFICATION OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH FROM LEKA TP2. NB HIGH CONFIDENCE (BLACK), MODERATED CONFIDENCE (MEDIUM GREY) AND LOW CONFIDENCE (LIGHT GREY) ... 155

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TABLE 8.17 LEVELS OF CONFIDENCE FROM DFA CLASSIFICATION OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH FROM

LEKA TP4. NBHIGH CONFIDENCE (BLACK), MODERATED CONFIDENCE (MEDIUM GREY) AND LOW CONFIDENCE (LIGHT GREY) ... 156 TABLE 8.18 FINAL TABLE DOCUMENTING SPECIES REPRESENTED BY ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH WITHIN

LEKA TP4 ... 157 TABLE 8.19 LEVELS OF CONFIDENCE FROM DFA CLASSIFICATION OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH FROM

HEKETA TP3.NBHIGH CONFIDENCE (BLACK), MODERATED CONFIDENCE (MEDIUM GREY) AND LOW CONFIDENCE (LIGHT GREY) ... 158 TABLE 8.20 FINAL TABLE DOCUMENTING SPECIES REPRESENTED BY ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH WITHIN

HEKETA TP3 ... 158 TABLE 8.21 NUTRITIONAL FIGURES AND RANKINGS FOR SPECIES WITHIN THE GADIO ENGA SYSTEM

ACCORDING TO CALORIES, PROTEIN, FATS, CARBOHYDRATES AND TOTAL NUTRITION FIGURES (DATA FROM DORNSTREICH 1974,1978) ... 163 TABLE 8.22 NUTRITIONAL FIGURES AND RANKINGS FOR SPECIES WITHIN BELLONA ISLAND SYSTEM

ACCORDING TO CALORIES, PROTEIN, FATS, CARBOHYDRATES AND TOTAL NUTRITION FIGURES (DATA FROM CHRISTIANSEN 1975) ... 166 TABLE 8.23NUTRITIONAL FIGURES AND RANKINGS FOR SPECIES WITHIN ANUTAN SYSTEM ACCORDING TO

CALORIES, PROTEIN, FATS, CARBOHYDRATES AND TOTAL NUTRITION FIGURES (DATA FROM YEN

1973B) ... 170 TABLE 8.24NUTRITIONAL FIGURES AND RANKINGS FOR SPECIES WITHIN TONGAN SYSTEM ACCORDING TO

CALORIES, PROTEIN, FATS, CARBOHYDRATES AND TOTAL NUTRITION FIGURES (DATA FROM MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE AND FORESTRY 2001) ... 173 TABLE 8.25 NUTRITIONAL FIGURES AND RANKINGS FOR SPECIES WITHIN ONTONG JAVA SYSTEM

ACCORDING TO CALORIES, PROTEIN, FATS, CARBOHYDRATES AND TOTAL NUTRITION FIGURES SYSTEM

(DATA FROM BAYLISS-SMITH 1973,1986) ... 176 TABLE 8.26 STATISTICAL COMPARISON OF SPECIES’ GROUPINGS IN EXAMPLE SYSTEMS ACCORDING TO

OVERALL NUTRITION FIGURES/100G ... 178 TABLE 8.27 LABOUR INVESTMENT INTO SPECIES WITHIN THE GADIO ENGA SYSTEM (DATA FROM

DORNSTREICH 1974,1978) ... 179 TABLE 8.28 LABOUR INVESTMENT INTO SPECIES WITHIN THE BELLONA IS SYSTEM (DATA FROM

CHRISTIANSEN 1975) ... 181 TABLE 8.29LABOUR INVESTMENT INTO SPECIES WITHIN THE ANUTAN SYSTEM (DATA FROM YEN 1973B) ... 182 TABLE 8.30LABOUR INVESTMENT INTO SPECIES WITHIN THE TONGAN SYSTEM (DATA FROM MINISTRY OF

AGRICULTURE AND FORESTRY 2001) ... 184 TABLE 8.31LABOUR INVESTMENT INTO SPECIES WITHIN THE ONTONG JAVA PLANT PRODUCTION SYSTEM

(DATA FROM BAYLISS-SMITH 1973,1986) ... 185 TABLE 8.32 STATISTICAL COMPARISON OF SPECIES’ GROUPINGS IN EXAMPLE SYSTEMS ACCORDING TO

LABOUR INPUT FIGURES ... 187 TABLE 8.33OUTPUT COMPARISON OF SPECIES IN GADIO ENGA PLANT PRODUCTION SYSTEM (DATA FROM

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TABLE 8.34 OUTPUT COMPARISON OF SPECIES IN BELLONA ISLAND SYSTEM (DATA FROM CHRISTIANSEN

1975) ... 189

TABLE 8.35OUTPUT COMPARISON OF SPECIES IN ANUTAN SYSTEM (DATA FROM YEN 1973B)... 191

TABLE 8.36 OUTPUT COMPARISON OF SPECIES IN TONGAN SYSTEM (DATA FROM MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE AND FORESTRY 2001) ... 192

TABLE 8.37 OUTPUT COMPARISON OF SPECIES IN ONTONG JAVA PRODUCTION SYSTEM (DATA FROM BAYLISS-SMITH 1973,1986) ... 194

TABLE 8.38 YIELD RATIOS FOR ARCHAEOLOGICAL SPECIES IN ALL MODERN PRODUCTION SYSTEMS (KG/TIME UNIT OF LABOUR) ... 196

TABLE 8.39OUTPUT TO INPUT RATIOS FOR ARCHAEOLOGICAL SPECIES USING GADIO ENGA DATA ... 198

TABLE 8.40OUTPUT TO INPUT RATIOS FOR ARCHAEOLOGICAL SPECIES USING BELLONA DATA ... 199

TABLE 8.41OUTPUT TO INPUT RATIOS FOR ARCHAEOLOGICAL SPECIES USING ANUTAN DATA ... 200

TABLE 8.42OUTPUT TO INPUT RATIOS FOR ARCHAEOLOGICAL SPECIES USING TONGAN 2001 DATA ... 201

TABLE 8.43OUTPUT TO INPUT RATIOS FOR ARCHAEOLOGICAL SPECIES USING ONTONG JAVAN DATA ... 202

TABLE 8.44 STATISTICAL COMPARISON OF NUTRITIONAL VALUE OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL AND EXPECTED ETHNOGRAPHIC SPECIES ... 215

TABLE 8.45 STATISTICAL COMPARISON OF NUTRITIONAL VALUE OF SPECIES GROUPS WITHIN ARCHAEOLOGICAL SYSTEMS AT TALASIU,LEKA AND HEKETA ... 215

TABLE 9.1LIST OF ALL SPECIES IDENTIFIED ARCHAEOBOTANICALLY WITHIN THIS STUDY ... 222

TABLE 9.2IDENTIFIED FAMILIES AND SPECIES WITHIN ARCHAEOBOTANICAL REMAINS FROM TALASIU (TO-MU-2) ... 241

TABLE 9.3YIELD RATIOS FOR SPECIES IDENTIFIED AT TALASIU MODELLED USING COMPARATIVE SYSTEMS ... 243

TABLE 9.4LABOUR INPUTS FOR SPECIES IDENTIFIED AT TALASIU MODELLED USING COMPARATIVE SYSTEMS ... 243

TABLE 9.5STATISTICAL COMPARISON OF LABOUR INPUTS FOR GROUPINGS AT TALASIU IN TERMS OF MEAN DIFFERENCE MODELLED USING COMPARATIVE SYSTEMS ... 243

TABLE 9.6IDENTIFIED FAMILIES AND SPECIES WITHIN ARCHAEOBOTANICAL REMAINS FROM LEKA (J17) 245 TABLE 9.7YIELD RATIOS FOR SPECIES IDENTIFIED AT LEKA MODELLED USING COMPARATIVE SYSTEMS . 246 TABLE 9.8LABOUR INPUTS FOR SPECIES IDENTIFIED AT LEKA MODELLED USING COMPARATIVE SYSTEMS ... 247

TABLE 9.9STATISTICAL COMPARISON OF LABOUR INPUTS FOR GROUPINGS AT LEKA IN TERMS OF MEAN DIFFERENCE MODELLED USING COMPARATIVE SYSTEMS ... 247

TABLE 9.10IDENTIFIED FAMILIES AND SPECIES WITHIN ARCHAEOBOTANICAL REMAINS FROM HEKETA (TO-NT-2) ... 248

TABLE 9.11YIELD RATIOS FOR SPECIES IDENTIFIED AT HEKETA MODELLED USING COMPARATIVE EXAMPLE SYSTEMS... 249

TABLE 9.12 LABOUR INPUTS FOR SPECIES IDENTIFIED AT HEKETA MODELLED USING COMPARATIVE EXAMPLE SYSTEMS ... 249

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List of Figures

FIGURE 5.1FLOWCHART SHOWING METHODOLOGY FOR THE IMAGING AND RECORDING OF STARCH AND

PARENCHYMA WITHIN THE REFERENCE COLLECTION... 59

FIGURE 5.2DIAGRAM SHOWING BASIC FEATURES OF STARCH GRANULE MORPHOLOGY ... 65

FIGURE 5.3BOX PLOT OF STARCH GRANULE LENGTHS WITHIN REFERENCE COLLECTION ... 72

FIGURE 5.4BOX PLOT OF STARCH GRANULE WIDTHS WITHIN REFERENCE COLLECTION ... 72

FIGURE 5.5 BOX PLOT OF STARCH GRANULE HILUM POSITION TO LENGTH RATIOS WITHIN REFERENCE COLLECTION ... 73

FIGURE 5.6PLOT SHOWING DISCRIMINATION OF SPECIES WITHIN CENTRIC DATASET ACCORDING TO FIRST TWO CANONICAL VARIATES ... 79

FIGURE 5.7PLOT SHOWING DISCRIMINATION OF 15 SPECIES WITHIN ECCENTRIC DATASET ACCORDING TO FIRST TWO CANONICAL VARIATES ... 79

FIGURE 5.8 CLASSIFICATION MATRIX FOR THE OVERALL CENTRIC DATASET, SHOWING HIGHEST DISCRIMINATION OF COLOCASIA ESCULENTA, INOCARPUS FAGIFER, MORINDA CITRIFOLIA AND SPONDIAS DULCIS (SPECIES LISTED VERTICALLY IN THE FIRST COLUMN ARE THE ORIGINAL SPECIES, AND THOSE LISTED HORIZONTALLY IN THE TOP ROW ARE THE SPECIES TO WHICH DFA CLASSIFIED GRANULES) .. 81

FIGURE 5.9 CLASSIFICATION MATRIX FOR THE OVERALL ECCENTRIC DATASET, SHOWING HIGHEST DISCRIMINATION OF COLOCASIA ESCULENTA, CURCUMA LONGA, AND DIOSCOREA PENTAPHYLLA (SPECIES LISTED VERTICALLY IN THE FIRST COLUMN ARE THE ORIGINAL SPECIES, AND THOSE LISTED HORIZONTALLY IN THE TOP ROW ARE THE SPECIES TO WHICH DFA CLASSIFIED GRANULES) ... 81

FIGURE 5.10BOX PLOT OF PARENCHYMA CELL LENGTHS OF TAXA IN THE REFERENCE COLLECTION ... 87

FIGURE 5.11BOX PLOT OF PARENCHYMA CELL WIDTHS OF TAXA IN THE REFERENCE COLLECTION ... 88

FIGURE 5.12 PLOT SHOWING CLASSIFICATION OF PARENCHYMA WITHIN REFERENCE COLLECTION USING DFA ... 89

FIGURE 5.13 DESCRIPTION OF VASCULAR BUNDLE ARRANGEMENTS WITHIN VEGETATIVE PARENCHYMA (FROM HATHER 2000) ... 90

FIGURE 5.14 BOX PLOT SHOWING VASCULAR BUNDLE LENGTHS WITHIN REFERENCE COLLECTION ACCORDING TO TISSUE ARRANGEMENT ... 94

FIGURE 5.15FLOWCHART 1 USED AS AN IDENTIFICATION KEY TO IDENTIFY UNKNOWN PARENCHYMATOUS SAMPLES WHEN VASCULAR TISSUES ARE VISIBLE ... 110

FIGURE 5.16FLOWCHART 2 USED AS AN IDENTIFICATION KEY TO IDENTIFY UNKNOWN PARENCHYMATOUS SAMPLES WHEN NO VASCULAR TISSUES ARE VISIBLE... 111

FIGURE 6.1 MAP SHOWING LOCATION OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL SITES INCLUDED IN THIS STUDY FROM TONGATAPU ... 116

FIGURE 6.2STRATIGRAPHIC DIAGRAM OF CULTURAL DEPOSITS WITHIN TALASIU TP2 ... 120

FIGURE 6.3STRATIGRAPHIC DIAGRAM OF CULTURAL DEPOSITS WITHIN LEKA TP2 ... 122

FIGURE 6.4STRATIGRAPHIC DIAGRAM OF CULTURAL DEPOSITS AT LEKA TP4 ... 122

FIGURE 6.5STRATIGRAPHIC DIAGRAM OF CULTURAL DEPOSITS WITHIN HEKETA TP3... 124

FIGURE 6.6CALIBRATION OF RADIOCARBON DATES FROM TALASIU (TO-MU-2),LEKA (J17) AND HEKETA (TO-NT-2) ... 125

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FIGURE 8.2BOX PLOT DEMONSTRATING MAXIMUM LENGTH COMPARISON OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH

TYPE 1 WITH DIOSCOREA SPP. ... 149 FIGURE 8.3DISCRIMINANT ANALYSIS PLOT FOR CENTRIC DATASET SHOWING ELLIPSES (COLOURED DOTS

REPRESENT REFERENCE SPECIES, BLACK DOTS REPRESENT ARCHAEOLOGICAL GRAINS) ... 152 FIGURE 8.4DISCRIMINANT ANALYSIS PLOT FOR ECCENTRIC DATASET SHOWING ELLIPSES (COLOURED DOTS

REPRESENT REFERENCE SPECIES, BLACK DOTS REPRESENT ARCHAEOLOGICAL GRAINS) ... 153 FIGURE 8.5ARCHAEOLOGICAL AND REFERENCE STARCH: (A) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS

ARTOCARPUS ALTILIS, (B) MODERN STARCH OF A.ALTILIS, (C) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS ALOCASIA MACRORRHIZA,(D) MODERN STARCH OF A.MACRORRHIZA, (E) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS AMORPHOPHALLUS PAEONIIFOLIUS, (F) MODERN STARCH OF A.PAEONIIFOLIUS, (G)

ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS BARRINGTONIA ASIATICA, (H) MODERN STARCH OF

B.ASIATICA, (I) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS COLOCASIA ESCULENTA,(J) MODERN STARCH OF C. ESCULENTA, (K) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS CURCUMA LONGA, (L) MODERN STARCH OF C.LONGA, (M) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS CYRTOSPERMA MERKUSII,(N)

MODERN STARCH OF C.MERKUSII, (O) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS DIOSCOREA ALATA, (P) MODERN STARCH OF D.ALATA. ... 159 FIGURE 8.6ARCHAEOLOGICAL AND REFERENCE STARCH CONT.:(Q) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED

AS DIOSCOREA BULBIFERA (R) MODERN STARCH OF D. BULBIFERA,(S) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS DIOSCOREA ESCULENTA,(T) MODERN STARCH OF D.ESCULENTA,(U) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS DIOSCOREA NUMMULARIA, (V) MODERN STARCH OF D.NUMMULARIA, (W)

ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS INOCARPUS FAGIFER,(X) MODERN STARCH OF I. FAGIFER, (Y) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS IPOMOEA BATATAS,(Z) MODERN STARCH OF I.BATATAS, (AA) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS MUSA SP.,(AB) MODERN STARCH OF MUSA SP.,(AC)

ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS PIPER METHYSTICUM, (AD) MODERN STARCH OF

P.METHYSTICUM, (AE) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH (CONTAMINANT) IDENTIFIED AS SOLANUM TUBEROSUM,(AF) MODERN STARCH OF S.TUBEROSUM, (AG) ARCHAEOLOGICAL STARCH IDENTIFIED AS SPONDIAS DULCIS,(L) MODERN STARCH OF S. DULCIS. ... 160 FIGURE 8.7NUTRITIONAL COMPARISON OF SPECIES WITHIN THE GADIO ENGA PLANT PRODUCTION SYSTEM

(DATA FROM DORNSTREICH 1974,1978) ... 164 FIGURE 8.8NUTRITIONAL COMPARISON OF SPECIES WITHIN THE BELLONA ISLAND PLANT PRODUCTION

SYSTEM, SHOWING EXPONENTIAL TREND LINES FOR HORTICULTURAL AND SEMI-CULTIVATED TAXA

(DATA FROM CHRISTIANSEN 1975) ... 167 FIGURE 8.9NUTRITIONAL COMPARISON OF SPECIES WITHIN THE ANUTAN PLANT PRODUCTION SYSTEM,

SHOWING EXPONENTIAL TREND LINES FOR PRIMARY AND SUPPLEMENTARY TAXA (DATA FROM YEN

1973B) ... 171 FIGURE 8.10 NUTRITIONAL COMPARISON OF SPECIES WITHIN THE TONGAN PLANT PRODUCTION SYSTEM,

SHOWING EXPONENTIAL TREND LINES FOR HORTICULTURAL AND SEMI-CULTIVATED TAXA (DATA FROM MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE AND FORESTRY 2001) ... 174 FIGURE 8.11 NUTRITIONAL COMPARISON OF SPECIES WITHIN THE ONTONG JAVA PLANT PRODUCTION

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FIGURE 8.12 LABOUR COMPARISON OF SPECIES WITHIN THE GADIO ENGA SYSTEM (DATA FROM

DORNSTREICH 1974,1977) ... 180

FIGURE 8.13 LABOUR COMPARISON OF SPECIES WITHIN THE BELLONA ISLAND SYSTEM (DATA FROM CHRISTIANSEN 1975) ... 181

FIGURE 8.14LABOUR COMPARISON OF SPECIES WITHIN THE ANUTAN SYSTEM (DATA FROM YEN 1973B) 183 FIGURE 8.15LABOUR COMPARISON OF SPECIES WITHIN THE TONGAN SYSTEM (DATA FROM MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE AND FORESTRY 2001) ... 185

FIGURE 8.16LABOUR COMPARISON OF SPECIES WITHIN THE ONTONG JAVA PLANT PRODUCTION SYSTEM (DATA FROM BAYLISS-SMITH 1973,1986) ... 186

FIGURE 8.17OUTPUT COMPARISON ACCORDING TO YIELD FOR SPECIES WITHIN GADIO ENGA SYSTEM (DATA FROM DORNSTREICH 1974,1978) ... 188

FIGURE 8.18OUTPUT COMPARISON ACCORDING TO YIELD FOR SPECIES WITHIN BELLONA SYSTEM (DATA FROM CHRISTIANSEN 1975)... 190

FIGURE 8.19OUTPUT COMPARISON ACCORDING TO YIELD FOR SPECIES WITHIN THE ANUTAN SYSTEM (DATA FROM YEN 1973B) ... 191

FIGURE 8.20OUTPUT COMPARISON ACCORDING TO YIELD FOR SPECIES WITHIN THE TONGAN SYSTEM (DATA FROM MINISTRY OF AGRICULTURE AND FORESTRY 2001) ... 193

FIGURE 8.21COMPARISON ACCORDING TO YIELD FOR SPECIES WITHIN THE ONTONG JAVA PRODUCTION SYSTEM (DATA FROM BAYLISS-SMITH 1973,1986) ... 194

FIGURE 8.22OUTPUT TO INPUT RATIO COMPARISON FOR ARCHAEOLOGICAL SPECIES WITHIN EACH SYSTEM IN TERMS OF CALORIES ... 206

FIGURE 8.23OUTPUT TO INPUT RATIO COMPARISON FOR ARCHAEOLOGICAL SPECIES WITHIN EACH SYSTEM IN TERMS OF PROTEIN ... 207

FIGURE 8.24OUTPUT TO INPUT RATIO COMPARISON FOR ARCHAEOLOGICAL SPECIES WITHIN EACH SYSTEM IN TERMS OF FATS (NOTE VERTICAL SCALE IS LOGARITHMIC) ... 207

FIGURE 8.25OUTPUT TO INPUT RATIO COMPARISON FOR ARCHAEOLOGICAL SPECIES WITHIN EACH SYSTEM IN TERMS OF CARBOHYDRATES ... 208

FIGURE 8.26 COMPARISON OF AVERAGE NUTRITIONAL EFFICIENCY RATIOS FOR ALL SYSTEMS (NOTE VERTICAL SCALE IS LOGARITHMIC) ... 208

FIGURE 8.27NUTRITIONAL COMPARISON OF SPECIES IDENTIFIED AT TALASIU (TO-MU-2) ... 210

FIGURE 8.28 NUTRITIONAL COMPARISON OF SPECIES IDENTIFIED AT TALASIU WITH EXPECTED ETHNOGRAPHIC SPECIES. ... 211

FIGURE 8.29NUTRITIONAL COMPARISON OF SPECIES IDENTIFIED AT LEKA (J17) ... 212

FIGURE 8.30NUTRITIONAL COMPARISON OF SPECIES IDENTIFIED AT LEKA WITH EXPECTED ETHNOGRAPHIC SPECIES ... 213

FIGURE 8.31NUTRITIONAL COMPARISON OF SPECIES IDENTIFIED AT HEKETA (TO-NT-2) ... 214

FIGURE 8.32 NUTRITIONAL COMPARISON OF SPECIES IDENTIFIED AT HEKETA WITH EXPECTED ETHNOGRAPHIC SPECIES ... 215

FIGURE 8.33COMPARISON OF CALORIFIC EFFICIENCY OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL SPECIES FROM TALASIU... 218

FIGURE 8.34COMPARISON OF CALORIFIC EFFICIENCY OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL SPECIES FROM LEKA ... 218

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FIGURE 8.36MODELLED ARCHAEOLOGICAL SYSTEMS ACCORDING TO CALORIFIC EFFICIENCY VALUES FROM MODERN SYSTEMS ... 220 FIGURE 9.1 TREND TOWARDS DECREASED SYSTEM NUTRITIONAL EFFICIENCY AND INCREASED SOCIAL

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List of Abbreviations

BP years before present bsl below surface level bd below datum ºC degrees centigrade cal calibrated

cm centimetres cm³ centimetres cubed

DFA Discriminant Function Analysis hr hours

ioa instance of activity km kilometres

m metres

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1

Chapter 1

Introduction

Plants have played a critical role throughout history, enabling human migration, colonisation and the formation of complex societies. Many plant species have been biologically adapted to human exploitation through genetic manipulations that increase productivity and ease cultivation and transportation. The production and use of plants through horticultural practices was a critical stepping stone in the development of complex societies in human history. Plants enabled nutritionally diverse diets, but also provided useful materials such as cordage, fibre, thatch, cooking and storage vessels, and medicines to name a few. Plant production systems within the Pacific region are the result of transportation of plants and of concepts relating to them, as well as localised adaptation to specific island environments. Understanding the role that these systems played in stimulating and enabling episodes of human movement into and within Polynesia is critical for developing models of global migration patterns.

There are two prevailing views on human-environment interactions. The first of these argues that humans reacted passively to environmental change. This traditional perspective has been challenged by the view that humans act as agents of change, both reacting to and transforming the landscapes which they inhabit. Island environments represent microcosms of this ecosystem manipulation and adaptation, and the islands of the Pacific provide an important setting to test these views. Natural and cultural factors that affected the timing and speed of movement, settlement patterns, technological development and the transformation of island environments within the Pacific can arguably provide insights at a global scale.

This archaeobotanical thesis will focus on the links between plant utilisation and migration episodes within Western Polynesia as well as on the role of plants within the evolution of social hierarchy through agricultural development, which form core issues in debates about Pacific settlement processes. Specifically, this thesis will investigate the introduction and role of prehistoric crops in Tongan prehistory through a study of ancient plant remains found in Lapita and post-Lapita archaeological sites around Tongatapu.

Research aims and objectives

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2 recognised as an ideal setting to test this theory. The view that exploitation rather than adaptation drove episodes of Lapita migration into Remote Oceania was taken by Groube (1971). His ‘strandlooper’ concept for Lapita subsistence, later adopted by Best (1984), favoured marine exploitation over the utilisation of transported terrestrial crops and animals. This contrasts with the ‘transported landscape’ proposed by Kirch (1984) and others (Green 1991), in which a full suite of horticultural crops and techniques was brought by Lapita populations moving eastwards into Polynesia. These were then cultivated and intensified through adaptation of traditional practices within the varying high volcanic, limestone and atoll island settings of this region. The scale of ecosystem manipulation and the economic systems that fuelled this and later pulses of migration from the Western Polynesian homeland into Central and East Polynesia after 1500 BP are still contested. Global models such as the Ideal Free Distribution (IFD) from Human Behavioural Ecology (HBE) have been applied to account for modes of subsistence, new habitat suitability, and population density in predicting migratory behaviour (Kennett et al. 2006). Comparisons have also been drawn between the migration of food-producing people in areas such as the Pacific, Atlantic, Caribbean and the Mediterranean, suggesting that the insularity of island and coastal landscapes affects the rate and dynamics of colonising episodes (Dawson 2008; Keegan and Diamond 1987; Leppard 2014).

Disentangling local parameters and rates of change, as well as establishing how early subsistence evolved as locally-adapted cultures emerged is a crucial issue within Pacific archaeology that can be applied globally. Other archaeobotanical (Crowther 2005, 2009; Horrocks and Bedford 2004, 2010; Horrocks and Nunn 2007; Horrocks et al. 2009) and isotopic studies (Bentley et al. 2007; Field et al. 2009; Shaw et al. 2009; Valentin et al. 2010) have attempted to provide new proxy evidence on Lapita and post-Lapita subsistence, with research in Near and Remote Oceania. However, there has been very little direct evidence to corroborate the picture these data sketch. The analysis of both micro- and macrobotanical remains from archaeological sites has the potential to provide important new data to resolve the significance of human-plant production systems in the colonisation of the Pacific islands 3000 years ago.

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3 approaches have generally moved away from unilinear trajectories for social complexity, and accept that multiple routes may be taken as a response to the same initial conditions. The ‘advantages’ of the adoption of agriculture did not necessarily ensure that this development would occur, and adaptive changes that might be viewed as regressive in the direction of less complex cultural forms also occurred (Binford 1968:331).

The islands of Polynesia present unique opportunities to study the links between tropical production systems, and agricultural intensification in non-industrialised societies. Testing of the ‘hydraulic hypothesis’ advanced by Wittfogel (1957), that draws a causal connection between the managerial requirements of complex irrigation and the development of complex socio-political structures, has been a dominant theme in Pacific research. Case studies from locations such as the Australs (Bollt 2012), Hawaii (Earle 1980, 1991, 2012; Ladefoged and Graves 2008; Lincoln and Ladefoged 2014; McCoy and Graves 2012; Sahlins 1958), the Marquesas (Addison 2006; Allen 2010; Earle 1993), and Futuna (Kirch 1982, 1994) have investigated the ties between investment in irrigation for wet taro production as landesque capital, and the development of political economies. The outcomes of these investigations challenged the idea of a direct link and demonstrated that territorial expansion was often the result of increasingly intensified dryland agricultural regimes when shorter-fallow and labor-intensive methods put pressure on the political elite to source other tracts of arable land. These more complex chains of causality question the uncritical imposition of generic hierarchical models of political economy that have often been derived from the largely discredited assumptions of Boserup (1965), Wittfogel, and the unilinear “Mesopotamian Model” of political economy, settlement pattern, and cultural evolution. ‘Expansion’, rather than ‘intensification’ of production to create food surplus therefore represents an alternative pathway to socio-political development both in the Pacific and elsewhere.

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4 nutritional value, yield, labour investment)? This study sought to answer these research questions as well as to challenge existing assumptions which are primarily based on a lack of direct evidence for horticultural practices in prehistory, through systematic archaeobotanical analysis.

The two main objectives of this research were to construct a comprehensive reference collection for both starch and parenchyma from economic and supplementary plant species in Tonga, and to conduct a broad archaeobotanical survey of sediments from sites on the island of Tongatapu, from both Lapita-associated and post-Lapita contexts. Archaeobotanical techniques utilised here focus on the identification of both micro- and macrobotanical remains of plant storage organs. Plant microfossils such as starches, phytoliths and pollen have the potential to inform upon human interaction with their surrounding landscapes. In particular, these small remnants of plants can provide direct evidence for the role of plants within the diet and subsistence of a population. Starch is produced in the roots, tubers, fruits and seeds of plants, which are the main organs that are processed and eaten by humans (Torrence and Barton 2006). Additionally, macro-botanical remains such as charred, desiccated or water-logged vegetative storage parenchymatous tissue are also often diagnostic to species level (Hather 1991, 1994, 2000). These remains can enter into the archaeological record through either natural processes or through human intervention, such as intentionally growing or processing crops on site. An analysis of diagnostic morphological attributes of these remains was a crucial initial step towards enabling the taxonomic identification of material extracted from archaeological deposits, and built on the foundational work of others in the Pacific region (Babot 2003; Crowther 2001, 2005, 2009, 2012; Hather 2000; Horrocks and Barber 2005; Horrocks et al. 2004a, 2008, 2012, 2014; Loy 1994; Oliveira 2008, 2012; Paz 2005; Torrence et al. 2004; Wilson et al. 2010).

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5

Theoretical framework

Basics of agroecology

In order to address the two primary research questions within this study, a Human Ecological approach was taken to model and interpret the archaeobotanical data from Talasiu (TO-Mu-2), Leka (J17), and Heketa (TO-Nt-2). More specifically, these archaeological systems were analysed using techniques deriving from Agricultural Ecology or Agroecology, which aims to visualise cultivation as the creation of an ecosystem or agro-ecosystem (Tivy 1990). The management of crops and the environment through cultivation produces a habitat which allows the crop to realise its productive potential. Within this view, the agent becomes an essential ecological variable in the system, and the ‘ecosystem’ refers to social, cultural and economic contexts as well as the properties of the natural environment. It is argued that due to positive and negative feedback loops, whenever humans intercede they generate basic changes in the functioning of the system (Cox and Atkins 1979:57). Bayliss-Smith (1977) defines four types of productive efficiency that are calculated within this approach: indigenous efficiency (perceived output divided by primary input or cost in human effort to supply a population with goods to maintain and enrich it), exogenous efficiency (exported de-facto output divided by secondary input or cost to society as a whole of maintaining and enriching any enclave within it), technoenvironmental efficiency (Harris’ T) (total de-facto output divided by primary input), and total efficiency (total de-facto output divided by primary and secondary inputs).

Variables considered in these agro-ecosystems often relate to the mode of subsistence, labour inputs, yield, productivity, demography, as well as social and political constraints like surplus requirements. Previous applications of this approach in the Pacific have attempted to model production systems using ethnographic and historic data, and also island carrying capacity to refine population estimates (Bartruff et al. 2012; Bayliss-Smith 1977, 1978) and understand socio-political development (Lincoln and Ladefoged 2014). These studies vary in detail depending on the nature of data available, but often caution against strictly linking resource production to environmental restrictions or population pressure, as social factors also play a significant role in determining both population and modes of subsistence (Bayliss-Smith 1978). The degree of precision required to identify the ecological, economic and social constraints of agro-ecosystems ensures that archaeologists can only broadly hypothesise upon the interactions between natural and cultural variables. It is difficult to extrapolate whole prehistoric production systems from historic and ethnographic data, and how these changed over time.

Modern comparative systems and modelling archaeological systems

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6 Thaman 1976). This data is important, but cannot be assumed to accurately represent the nature of production throughout Tongan prehistory. The lack of diversity within modern production on Tongatapu required data collection from other Pacific dryland systems, to be able to model potential changes in yield and labour inputs resulting from varying cultivation techniques targeting different ranges of crops. Five systems from the Western Pacific were chosen, to provide a range of comparable data. They are the Gadio Enga of the New Guinea Highlands (Dornstreich 1977), Tongatapu (Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry 2001), Bellona Island (Christiansen 1975), Ontong Java (Bayliss-Smith 1973, 1977, 1986) and Anuta (Yen 1973b) in the Solomon Island Outliers. Data was collected on the range of plant species cultivated within each system, and the labour inputs and yields for each of these. These figures were used to calculate basic efficiency or rate of return ratios for each of these species in terms of nutritional and yield outputs to labour investment inputs, and to model archaeologically identified species within a range of different environmental, social and economic contexts. The geographic scale of each of these systems varied, but efficiency ratios are used to ensure comparability across all systems. Each system was characterised according to these variables (species diversity, nutritional diversity, labour diversity, and yield ratio diversity) rather than using loaded terminology such as ‘broad spectrum’ or ‘intensive’ that often does not capture the range of production techniques, decision-making and energy investment within different agro-ecosystems.

To model agricultural development in Tongan prehistory, it was deemed appropriate to keep the range of assumptions minimal to reduce the potential for error. Therefore an assessment of productivity was conducted through characterisation of archaeobotanical datasets using the ranges of yield and labour figures recorded from modern systems. Productivity is only one variable within an agroecological approach to production, but it can be placed within the social, ecological and economic context of each system to discuss how the range compared with expected outcomes based on previous research. It is clear that demographic, climatic and social factors would have impacted both the scale and intensity of agricultural production in the past, but these impacts can only be hypothesised within current research. The approach taken within this thesis therefore aimed to keep modelled assumptions to a minimum and redirect the focus of agricultural development away from the scale of production, towards a discussion of decision-making based on system nutritional efficiency and founded on data highlighting the timing of crop introductions and their use.

Thesis organisation

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7 assess the feasibility of applying the analysis of starch and vegetative parenchyma to questions regarding diet and subsistence. The biology, morphology, taphonomy and contamination potential of each of these remains was reviewed in order to gauge both the preservation and identification potential of archaeobotanical material. Chapter 5 outlines the methodology to create a reference collection for this study including species selection, field collection, and laboratory processing. Sample preparation for imaging using light microscopy and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) is described, and the collection of morphometric data through the use of image analysis software. Finally, tools such as replicable multivariate statistical classifications and identification keys are provided that characterise the morphology of starch and vegetative parenchyma and will enable the identification of unknown samples from archaeological deposits. The development of this comparative collection will enable the key research questions concerning the role of plants within the colonising process and the development of social hierarchy in the Tongan archipelago to be addressed.

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9

Chapter 2

Tongan Agriculture in the Pacific

Context

Research to date

Research into Tongan prehistory has thus far been oriented towards the study of artefacts and faunal remains. Although a range of archaeological and ethno-historic research has already been carried out in Tonga, none of these studies have so far addressed the role of agricultural change within cultural development in the island group. Early research was directed towards gathering information about the first colonisers, known as the Lapita culture, who had made their way from Southeast Asia into Melanesia and finally into Western Polynesia by 2800 BP (Burley 1998:349; Burley and Connaughton 2007; Burley et al. 2001). Very little is known about the role of horticulture within Lapita subsistence, especially in Western Polynesia. However, there are numerous studies of the wild food components of colonising diets such as shellfish, birds, reptiles and fish (Burley 1998; Burley and Connaughton 2007; Burley and Dickinson 2001; Groube 1971; Kirch and Dye 1979; Poulsen 1987; Spenneman 1986, 1989; Steadman, Pregill and Burley 2002). Archaeologists have been divided over whether a ‘strandlooper’ economy was employed that focussed on the collection of these natural coastal resources (Best 1984; Groube 1971); or a subsistence dominated by well-developed agricultural practices (Green 1979; Kirch 1997). The interpretation of the archaeological record is biased towards marine-based foraging due to the dominance of midden remains within Lapita cultural deposits (Davidson 1979:93; Davidson and Leach 2001), and current evidence suggests that agricultural activities were initially of only secondary importance (Burley 1998:355; Poulsen 1987:253-5; Spenneman 1989).

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10 Between 1500 BP and around 750 BP, very little is known about Tonga’s past. Oral traditions and genealogy suggest that the first Tu’i Tonga was appointed at around 1000 BP, although evidence of a widespread and integrated maritime chiefdom within the archaeological record is difficult to confirm prior to 500 BP (Burley 1998:375). Janet Davidson coined the term ‘the Dark Age’ for this gap, citing the lack of archaeological sites until late in the first millennium AD when monumental architecture associated with the development of a complex chiefdom emerges (Davidson 1979:94-5). More is known about the Tongan maritime chiefdom after 750 BP and the control of land by this central polity based on Tongatapu (Burley 1998; Clark et al. 2008). A complex social hierarchy existed at European contact, culminating in three paramount chiefly titles known as the Tu’i Tonga, the Tu’i Ha’a Takalaua, and the Tu’i Kanokupolu lines. To date, there is currently no direct archaeological evidence for agriculture in Tongan prehistory. Historical linguistics indicates a Proto-Oceanic lexicon containing the basic suite of Oceanic cultigens (Kirch 1997:206-207), which is assumed to have been transported throughout Western Polynesia by the Eastern Lapita cultural complex. Thus it is inferred that the Lapita colonisers had an economy in which agriculture played some continued role. In the late 18th century the Tongan language had names for a wide range of root and tree crops, although the core cultigens grown were yam (Dioscorea alata), giant taro (Alocasia macrorrhiza), taro (Colocasia esculenta), sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas), coconut (Cocos nucifera), plantain and bananas (Musa spp.), and breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis) (Burley and Connaughton 2007:182). Ethno-archaeological observations have been made of multi-cropping using intensive dryland field systems that are suited to the high limestone islands and lack of streams for irrigation (Kirch 1984). Agricultural features related to these systems, such as stone structures, can also still be seen in some locations in the Tongan landscape. Although field systems have been mapped on the outer islands, such as Niuatoputapu (Kirch 1988), no radiocarbon dates are associated with these features. Based on this information, it has been assumed that a changing environment, population increase and subsequently reduced food returns forced post-Lapita Tongan populations to rely more heavily on horticulturally produced food, eventually manifesting in an increasingly hierarchical society (Spenneman 1986:3).

Geographic and climatic limitations to agricultural modelling

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11 1965; Thaman 1976). There are no permanent streams on the island; free-draining porous soils above the limestone geological base which enable water to travel to the sea through underground channels. The location of the island of Tongatapu near the Tropic of Capricorn results in a mean annual temperature of around 23°C, humidity of up to 79%, and mean annual rainfall of 187cm (Thaman 1976). Seasonal variation in temperatures is low, only fluctuating by 4°C, but rainfall varies from around 8.4cm in the driest months to 24cm in wet months; however, there can be considerable variability in rainfall from year to year. Whilst there are some seasonal and annual fluctuations in climatic conditions, these do not vary significantly across Tongatapu due to the absence of significant topographic differences.

The geography and climatic conditions on Tongatapu both aid and hinder the modelling of past production systems. Unlike the Hawaiian archipelago, where dryland agricultural systems are often constructed and managed within distinct ecological zones (Lincoln and Ladefoged 2014), the raised limestone island of Tongatapu has little variety within ecological niches and so has no distinguishable boundaries for the utilisation of diverse production techniques (Maude 1965). One of the only observed variables affecting the geographic distribution of crop production is soil type. Two main soil types are present within the archipelago, the kelefatu soils which are very friable and fertile volcanic soils and vary in texture from loamy sand to clay, and the tou’one sandy soil that is present at low elevations close to the sea (Maude 1965; Thaman 1976). Tongatapu has both of these, but the kelefatu is the most prevalent- covering 90% of the landmass. Yams (Dioscorea spp.) do not grow well within small areas of tou’one soils; the sandy fast-draining soils are instead better suited to the cultivation of sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas). Gibbs (1967) distinguished two sub-categories between the upland or kelefatu soils. The first of these, ‘Lapaha clays’ are predominant in

Eastern Tongatapu and around the capital Nuku’alofa. The other, ‘Vaini clays’ cover most of the uplands in the west. The two soils are very similar in texture and composition yet cultivators in modern times understand the differences in fertility resulting from use and manipulation of these soils, and the limitations of particular cropping and fallow practices within these (Maude 1965). It is therefore possible that almost all of the available arable land on Tongatapu, around 224.14km² or 55398 acres, could be cultivated using much the same shifting dryland agricultural techniques, at any point in time. Early censuses estimate that around 7, 308 people were living on Tongatapu by 1891(Burley 2007), while estimates for pre-contact populations for the whole archipelago vary from 29700 (Maude 1965) to 40000 (Kirch 1984, 1988).

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12 system (1.6 acres per person) the entire arable land could have supported 346200 people (Green 1973:70). Based on these figures, and ethnographic descriptions of cultivation systems within the landscape on Tongatapu, Green argues that the best population estimate for the 18th century

would have been 15000-17000, under conditions of 1.8-2.0 acres per capita in a cultivation cycle of 8-10 years through bush fallowing agriculture (1973:72). Furthermore, this figure could easily have been attained up to 1000 years before, but this does not indicate that the population reached this peak and then stayed at this level. Instead, Green (1973:73) suggests that following this peak the pressure on land and resources triggered reduction mechanisms such as warfare to restrain further growth. Green also argues that reduction mechanisms do not necessarily begin after carrying capacity has been reached, but instead when figures of closer to 60-80% capacity are attained. These figures set an upper limit on population on Tongatapu of between 18,000 to 24,000 people and suggest population may have been higher in the past than at contact.

More recently, Burley (2007) modelled population estimates for the three key phases in Tongan prehistory (Lapita, Plainware and Classic Chiefdom). Previous estimates (Green 1973; Kirch 1984; Maude 1965; Walsh 1970), settlement patterns and analysis of material culture (Burley 1999; Spenneman 1987) were utilised to predict the likely rate of population increase over time. Given a founding population of around 100 people, a conservative population growth rate of 0.003, and a need for approximately 2 acres of productive land per person, the population at the end of the Lapita period within the archipelago could have been as high as 600-700 people (Burley 2007). Later during the Plainware and Ancestral Polynesian phases, around half the projected maximum land could have been under production with agricultural field systems by AD 400, which may have stimulated long-distance voyaging and exchange networks further east. Finally late prehistoric populations were predicted to have peaked around 18, 467 on Tongatapu alone (Burley 2007). The difference between past estimates and these recent figures indicate that there are varying opinions upon the potential agricultural productivity of land on Tongatapu, rates of population growth, as well as the acreage needed to support increasing populations.

Ethno-historic accounts of plant cultivation in Tonga:

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13 of a comprehensive understanding of late prehistoric and contact period agriculture in Tonga. It is also possible with such information to assess the temporal changes in reliance on certain crops. Other researchers have established the value of using ethnographic data as a guide to understanding the past (David and Kramer 2001, Wylie 1985). Ethnohistoric information is used in this thesis to create baseline data for the selection and development of a comparative collection in this study, as well as generating a picture of the environmental and social limits of production in Tonga under the Tu’i Tonga chiefdom in the historic period.

Plantations

Information can be gathered from these sources on the nature and organisation of agricultural plantations, within which the majority of cultivated crops were grown. Importantly, early observers also commented on the division of land and production according to status differentiation. The first European explorer to reach Tongatapu was Dutch explorer Abel Tasman in 1643 (1776), followed by Cook in 1773 and again in 1777 (in Beaglehole 1969; Cook 1785). Tasman (1776), having observed the bounty of Tongatapu through gifts and trade of pigs, poultry, coconuts, plantains, bananas, yams and other roots, went onshore and noted the layout of plantations in neat squares within which these crops were cultivated. During his second voyage in 1773, Cook (in Beaglehole 1969; Cook 1785) explored the islands within the Vava’u, Ha’apai and Tongatapu groups, and described his encounters with the islanders and excursions onshore. Cook, his officers, and onboard naturalists commented extensively on the distribution of plantations across the various islands, and the nature of the crops being cultivated (Cook in Beaglehole 1969; Cook 1785). On the main island of Tongatapu, Cook (1785) observed the layout and functional divisions within the individual plantations. The botanical knowledge of a naturalist on d Entrecasteaux’s voyage to the Vava’u Group, Jacques Labillardiere (1800), enabled the accurate identification and description of the various crops within these plantations, along with their domestic or economic purposes. On the larger island of Tongatapu, multi-cropping seemed to be the common method of cultivation within the individual plantations, whereby a variety of food plants are grown together within plots.

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14 plantation distribution, and the accurate division of land (Forster 1777). Johann (Forster 1778:223) also observed that the whole of Tongatapu was highly cultivated and seemed to be private property, the boundaries of which were fenced. Tree crops also commonly bordered or divided plantations (La Perouse 1799:171).

Cook (in Beaglehole 1969) noted that there were differences between the produce of the plantations reserved for the chiefly elite or ‘first rank’, and the commoners. Similarly, Captain Wilson (1799) commented on the links between land tenure arrangements and the layout of individual plantations. A map was produced from the circumnavigation of Tongatapu, highlighting the occupied and cultivated areas of the island, and the traditional names for these locations. Wilson also noted the use of the term ‘abey’ [abi] for these plantations or plots of land

(Wilson 1799:101), which is still in use today but under different tenure conditions.

Land tenure

Complex social hierarchy controlled the division and use of land for agriculture on Tongatapu in the 18th and 19th Centuries. Accounts from this period describe how this status differentiation resulted in different conditions for land ownership. These details are essential for reconstructing the influence that the state-level social hierarchy may have had on crop introductions and associated horticultural production in the past. Captain Waldegrave (1833) was informed during his visit in 1830 that the island was divided into 13 portions, with a chief being the proprietor of each. He was told that chiefs could, and often did, displace residents on the land, and these chiefs retained a claim to a portion of the agricultural produce (1833:185). This portion was argued by Waldegrave to be claimed in the absence of an official ‘taxation system’. In addition, the kings and higher chiefs reserved a portion of the land itself for their own agricultural production. E. W Gifford spent around nine months in Tonga as a member of the Bayard Dominick Expedition of Bernice P. Bishop Museum in 1920–21. Gifford noted that in the past all land and its products were regarded as the property of the Tu’i Tonga (Gifford 1929:102). Within these lands, those within the domain of the Tu’i Kanokupolu were regarded as his property, but also subject to the demand of the Tu’i Tonga. Likewise, a similar relationship was continued between the lesser chiefs and the Tui Kanokupolu. Both Cook (1785) and Mariner (in Martin 1991) noted similar arrangements. Gifford also argued that there seems to have been no communal lands in Tongan prehistory, but at the time of his visit there were some clear examples of modern communal tenancy (1929:176). On Lifuka Island, a particular tract of land or api belonged to the Queen, but in 1920 it was used as a communal field by the inhabitants of the village of Pangai, each household having a small section to plant sweet potatoes (1929:176). During harvesting, a portion was then given in return to the Queen.

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15 petty chiefs were appointed to continuously check that the common people were not utilizing those products without permission. The titles of these positions were the Tu’i Pangai and the Tu’i Sinoieiki. During their rounds of the territory, these officers would mark fine bunches of cooking bananas, breadfruit, yams, sweet potatoes that were suitable for the Tu’i Kanokupolu, by putting a sharp stick into the base of the tree or hanging coconut leaves from the branches (1929:104; Mariner in Martin 1991). In the case of yams or sweet potatoes, a stick was placed into the ground near the crops. These officers also reported to the chief and through him to the Tui Kanokupolu, upon the amount of crops planted by the farmers, and whether or not they were sufficient. However, this only applied to the territory of the Haa Ngata Motua lineage. A range of terms for other roles within Tongan society were also recorded by Gifford. For example, ‘pule fonua’ was the name for the rulers of the land, or chiefs who control food supply

(1929:104).

Festivals

Related to these intricate systems of land ownership was a yearly pattern of feasting and tributes based on the produce of plantations. According to early accounts, these were important for the redistribution of food surpluses and reinforced the ownership and land and production by elites within Tongan society. The first fruits of the yearly yam harvest or the first of any catch of fish or other food had to be presented to the chief and to the Tui Tonga before it could be partaken of by the producers (Gifford 1929:103). Tributes were carried from as far afield as Vava’u. A select group of people were appointed as petty officers in charge of supplying these food articles to the Tui Tonga, behind which Gifford believes is a form of religious sanction (1929:103). These tributes were “virtually made to the gods, but were made to them through the Tui Tonga who was treated like a god” (1929:103). William Mariner was a resident upon the island of Tongatapu for several years from 1806 to 1810, and recounted his experiences to John Martin which were originally published in 1817. During this time, he observed the cultivation of breadfruit, coconuts and yams on a daily basis, and so could provide detailed descriptions of horticultural practices throughout the seasons. He witnessed the ‘First fruits’ or ‘inasi ceremony, and perceived these offerings of the early yam harvest to be a means of insuring the “…protection of the gods and productions of the earth, of which yams are the most important.” (Mariner in Martin 1991:381)

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16 was brought to the malai or meeting place of the chief of the plantation, and then the procession carried onto the grave of the last Tui Tonga to receive a ‘blessing’, before returning to the malai. The yam harvest was then divided into portions. Half was allocated to the king, one quarter was dedicated to the gods and so appropriated by the priests, and the remainder was given to the Tui Tonga (Mariner in Martin 1991:382). Mariner thus commented on the generosity of the Tongan people, particularly those of the lower ranks, whereby it was “…so much the custom of Tonga to make liberal and profuse presents that the people generally either feast or starve.” (Mariner in Martin 1991:385)

In addition to the ‘inasi festival, several other ceremonies were carried out during the harvests to ensure productive success. Mariner describes the ‘tow-tow’ [tau tau] ceremony whereby offerings of yams, coconuts and other vegetable produce was made to A’lo A’lo, the god of weather, in particular but also to other gods (Mariner in Martin 1991:385). These concessions were made for the purpose of ensuring a continuation of favourable weather and soil fertility. The ceremony was performed initially when the yams were approaching maturity in early November, and then repeated every ten days seven or eight times. The produce was piled into three mounds, one of which was given to the gods and the remaining two were given to the chiefs and their households. After the ceremony, the pile dedicated to the gods was then divided between the attendees of the festivities. Another form of feasting was the ‘pongipongi’ which

involved the presentation of food and kava to the Tu’i Kanokupolu by chiefs of the Haa Ngata Motua and Haa Hatea lineages several times a year (Mariner in Martin 1991:99). In general, the Tu’i Kanokupolu was regarded as the ‘working king’ who oversaw the planting and other activities for the high king or Tu’i Tonga (Gifford 1929:99). The first Tu’i Kanokupolu Ngata was sent to Hihifo by the Tu’i Haa Takalaua to supervise agriculture and fishing, passing the produce to the Tu’i Haa Takalaua, then to the Tu’i Tonga, and the tradition continued until the independent powerbase in Hihifo eventually overthrew the Tu’i Tonga.

Cropping cycle

Importantly for this study, a small number of European explorers and scientists also commented on the seasonality and production techniques used to cultivate and harvest crops produced within these plantations on Tongatapu. These shed light on the restrictions upon production of annual crops such as taro (Colocasia esculenta) over perennial tree crops such as breadfruit (Artocarpus spp.) or bananas and plantains (Musa spp.). Anderson (in Cook 1785) argued that the tropical climate of Tonga would have resulted in a fast turn-over of crops within the plantations. He commented:

The quick succession of vegetables has been already mentioned; but I am not certain that

the changes of weather, by which it is brought about, are considerable enough to make

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17

sensible of the different seasons. This perhaps may be inferred from the state of their

vegetable productions, which are never so much affected, with respect to the foliage, as to

shed that all at once; for every leaf is succeeded by another, as fast as it falls, which causes

that appearance of universal and continual spring round here. (Anderson in Cook 1785:330).

Likewise, Cook himself described the difference in production between his visits. It was noted that the stocks were replenished despite arriving back again sooner than expected, but the breadfruits which had been the only original produce available for purchase were replaced with yams and plantains (1785:272). Large areas that had been fallow previously were transformed into plantain fields. These observations demonstrate the relatively quick succession of the seasons, in terms of the vegetables produced on Tongatapu at different times of the year (in Beaglehole 1969). Seasonal fluctuations were also commented on by La Perouse (1799:171), who thought that the low islands in this group likely experienced drought at some stage during the year and commented on the necessity of watering fields. In contrast, on the island of Uoleva further north in the Ha’apai group, water sources enabled irrigation.

Summary

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18 yearly pattern of feasting and tributes that were brought from as far afield as Vava’u (Mariner in Martin 1991:385).

The internal organisation of plantations varied, depending on the individual tastes and choices of the households utilising them. However, most households relied heavily on yams, multi-cropping them with sweet potato and taro in mounds in the centre of plantations (Beaglehole and Beaglehole 1941:43-44, Gifford 1929, La Billardiere 1800:366). Arboricultural crops such as plantains, bananas, and breadfruit were grown bordering the outer limits of the plantations (La Billardiere 1800:378, Wilson 1799:240). These trees were often left to mature and harvested each season as the fruits ripened, while the tuberous plants were replanted until the soil in the plot could no longer sustain growth and the plot was abandoned for a time (Cook in Beaglehole 1969; Cook 1785:271-2). After the introduction of new crops by European settlers such as manioc and corn, agricultural practices were forced to change to suit the requirements of these cultigens and there was a reduced reliance on traditional cultigens (Beaglehole and Beaglehole 1941). Despite this shift, these crops recorded by European explorers in the 18th and 19th Centuries mostly continue to be grown today.

(37)

19

Table 2.1 List of species recorded in early ethno-historic accounts from Tonga.

Species

Tasman 1643

Cook 1773-77

Forster 1773

Perouse 1780s

Labillardiere 1793

Wilson 1797

Mariner 1817

Orlebar 1830

Waldegrave 1833

Gifford 1929

Beaglehole 1938

Alocasia macrorrhiza X X X

Amorphophallus paeoniifolius X

Artocarpus altilis X X X X X X X X X X

Benincasa hispida X

Broussonetia papyrifera X X X X X

Citrus maxima X X X X

Cocos nucifera X X X X X X X X X X X

Colocasia esculenta X X X X X X X

Cordyline fruticosa/terminalis X

Curcuma longa X X

Cucumis melo X

Dioscora alata X X X X X X X X X X

Dioscorea bulbifera ? X ?

Dioscorea esculenta X ? X ? X

Ficus tinctoria X

Hibiscus manihot X

Inocarpus fagifer X X X

Ipomoea batatas X X X X

Morinda citrifolia X

Musa sp. (bananas) X X X X X X X X X X X

Musa sp. (plantains) X X X X X X X

Pandanus tectorius X X X

Piper methysticum X X X X X X X X

Pritchardia pacifica X

Saccharum officinarum X X X X X X

Spondias dulcis X X X

Syzygium malaccense X

Figure

Table 2.1 List of species recorded in early ethno-historic accounts from Tonga.

Table 2.1

List of species recorded in early ethno-historic accounts from Tonga. p.37
Figure 5.1 Flowchart showing methodology for the imaging and recording of starch and parenchyma within the reference collection

Figure 5.1

Flowchart showing methodology for the imaging and recording of starch and parenchyma within the reference collection p.77
Table 5.1 Hilum fissuring of reference species

Table 5.1

Hilum fissuring of reference species p.84
Figure 5.4 Box plot of starch granule widths within reference collection

Figure 5.4

Box plot of starch granule widths within reference collection p.90
Figure 5.3 Box plot of starch granule lengths within reference collection

Figure 5.3

Box plot of starch granule lengths within reference collection p.90
Figure 5.5 Box plot of starch granule hilum position to length ratios within reference collection

Figure 5.5

Box plot of starch granule hilum position to length ratios within reference collection p.91
Table 5.3 Summary of starch morphology within reference collection

Table 5.3

Summary of starch morphology within reference collection p.92
Figure 5.9 Classification matrix for the overall eccentric dataset, showing highest discrimination of Colocasia esculenta, Curcuma longa, and Dioscorea pentaphylla (species listed vertically in the first column are the original species, and those listed horizontally in the top row are the species to which DFA classified granules)

Figure 5.9

Classification matrix for the overall eccentric dataset, showing highest discrimination of Colocasia esculenta, Curcuma longa, and Dioscorea pentaphylla (species listed vertically in the first column are the original species, and those listed horizontally in the top row are the species to which DFA classified granules) p.99
Table 5.9 Summary of parenchyma morphology within reference collection

Table 5.9

Summary of parenchyma morphology within reference collection p.114
Figure 5.15 Flowchart 1 used as an identification key to identify unknown parenchymatous samples when vascular tissues are visible

Figure 5.15

Flowchart 1 used as an identification key to identify unknown parenchymatous samples when vascular tissues are visible p.128
Figure 5.16 Flowchart 2 used as an identification key to identify unknown parenchymatous samples when no vascular tissues are visible

Figure 5.16

Flowchart 2 used as an identification key to identify unknown parenchymatous samples when no vascular tissues are visible p.129
Figure 6.1 Map showing location of archaeological sites included in this study from Tongatapu

Figure 6.1

Map showing location of archaeological sites included in this study from Tongatapu p.134
Figure 6.2 Stratigraphic diagram of cultural deposits within Talasiu TP2

Figure 6.2

Stratigraphic diagram of cultural deposits within Talasiu TP2 p.138
Figure 6.4 Stratigraphic diagram of cultural deposits at Leka TP4

Figure 6.4

Stratigraphic diagram of cultural deposits at Leka TP4 p.140
Figure 6.3 Stratigraphic diagram of cultural deposits within Leka TP2

Figure 6.3

Stratigraphic diagram of cultural deposits within Leka TP2 p.140
Figure 6.5 Stratigraphic diagram of cultural deposits within Heketa TP3

Figure 6.5

Stratigraphic diagram of cultural deposits within Heketa TP3 p.142
Figure 6.6 Calibration of radiocarbon dates from Talasiu (TO-Mu-2), Leka (J17) and Heketa (TO-Nt-2)

Figure 6.6

Calibration of radiocarbon dates from Talasiu (TO-Mu-2), Leka (J17) and Heketa (TO-Nt-2) p.143
Table 8.5 Distribution and identification of parenchyma extracted from Talasiu TP2

Table 8.5

Distribution and identification of parenchyma extracted from Talasiu TP2 p.162
Table 8.7 Distribution of starch counts within Talasiu TP2

Table 8.7

Distribution of starch counts within Talasiu TP2 p.164
Table 8.11 Table outlining suggested family of origin of archaeological starch types from Talasiu TP2

Table 8.11

Table outlining suggested family of origin of archaeological starch types from Talasiu TP2 p.167
Figure 8.2 Box plot demonstrating maximum length comparison of archaeological starch Type 1 with Dioscorea spp

Figure 8.2

Box plot demonstrating maximum length comparison of archaeological starch Type 1 with Dioscorea spp p.167
Figure 8.3 Discriminant analysis plot for centric dataset showing ellipses (coloured dots represent reference species, black dots represent archaeological grains)

Figure 8.3

Discriminant analysis plot for centric dataset showing ellipses (coloured dots represent reference species, black dots represent archaeological grains) p.170
Table 8.13 Levels of confidence from DFA classification of archaeological starch from Talasiu TP2

Table 8.13

Levels of confidence from DFA classification of archaeological starch from Talasiu TP2 p.171
Figure 8.4 Discriminant analysis plot for eccentric dataset showing ellipses (coloured dots represent reference species, black dots represent archaeological grains)

Figure 8.4

Discriminant analysis plot for eccentric dataset showing ellipses (coloured dots represent reference species, black dots represent archaeological grains) p.171
Table 8.19 Levels of confidence from DFA classification of archaeological starch from Heketa TP3

Table 8.19

Levels of confidence from DFA classification of archaeological starch from Heketa TP3 p.176
Figure 8.5 paeoniifolius, modern starch of A. macrorrhiza, Archaeological and reference starch: (A) archaeological starch identified as Artocarpus altilis, (B) A

Figure 8.5

paeoniifolius, modern starch of A. macrorrhiza, Archaeological and reference starch: (A) archaeological starch identified as Artocarpus altilis, (B) A p.177
Figure 8.6 Archaeological and reference starch cont.: (Q) archaeological starch identified as Dioscorea bulbifera (R) modern starch of D

Figure 8.6

Archaeological and reference starch cont.: (Q) archaeological starch identified as Dioscorea bulbifera (R) modern starch of D p.178
Table 8.21 Nutritional figures and rankings for species within the Gadio Enga system according to calories, protein, fats, carbohydrates and total nutrition figures (data from Dornstreich 1974, 1978)

Table 8.21

Nutritional figures and rankings for species within the Gadio Enga system according to calories, protein, fats, carbohydrates and total nutrition figures (data from Dornstreich 1974, 1978) p.181
Figure 8.7 Nutritional comparison of species within the Gadio Enga plant production system (data from Dornstreich 1974, 1978)

Figure 8.7

Nutritional comparison of species within the Gadio Enga plant production system (data from Dornstreich 1974, 1978) p.182
Table 8.22 Nutritional figures and rankings for species within Bellona Island system according to calories, protein, fats, carbohydrates and total nutrition figures (data from Christiansen 1975)

Table 8.22

Nutritional figures and rankings for species within Bellona Island system according to calories, protein, fats, carbohydrates and total nutrition figures (data from Christiansen 1975) p.184

References

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