Subsistence and procurement strategies of the Thule Culture Inuit, northeast Greenland

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  • Subsistence and procurement strategies of the Thule Culture Inuit, northeast Greenland

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Title


Subsistence and procurement strategies of the Thule Culture Inuit, northeast Greenland

Subject

S2-7. Circumpolar archaeozoology: Arctic hunter-gatherers in context, oral

Description

Abstract:

For more than 450 years (c. 1400-1850 AD) of continued occupation the Thule Culture existed in high arctic Northeast Greenland based on a flexible and broad specter economy. Settlements were concentrated at certain ‘hot spots’, including the recurring polynias of the Northeast Water, Dove Bay, Sirius Water and the Scoresby Sound. Recent interdisciplinary studies on sites at the Sirius Water polynia have provided new information on seasonal cycles and subsistence and procurement strategies of the Thule Culture Inuit. Winter sites were concentrated at sheltered bays with stable fast ice during winter, with ringed seal (Phoca hispida) as the key game species, but also with significant frequencies of narwhal (Monodon monoceros) and caribou (Rangifer tarandus). Summer habitations in the deep fjords and the outer coast were dominated by terrestrial game and ringed seals. Walrus Island, situated at the polynia, was used as a seasonal aggregation site with access to migrating bowhead whales (Baleana mysticetus) and especially walrus (Odobenus rosmarus), a predictable resource of meat and blubber which was of crucial importance to the very existence of the Thule Culture throughout the entire occupation period in the region. Based primarily on faunal evidence, variability of game accessibility, temporal changes in the subsistence patterns and interregional variations of the four ‘hot spots’ of Northeast Greenland will be discussed in a palaeo-environmental and palaeo-climatic perspective.

Authors:

GOTFREDSEN Anne Birgitte

Affiliations

Zoological Museum, Natural History Museum of Denmark, University of Copenhagen, Universitetsparken 15, DK-2100 Copenhagen Ø, abgotfredsen@snm.ku.dk

Creator

Gotfredsen , Anne Birgitte

Date

August 2010

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Document Item Type Metadata

Citation

Gotfredsen , Anne Birgitte. " Subsistence and procurement strategies of the Thule Culture Inuit, northeast Greenland ," in BoneCommons, Item #1182, http://alexandriaarchive.org/bonecommons/items/show/1182 (accessed September 24, 2020).