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date: 17 October 2019

Kamegaokalocked

  • J. Edward Kidder jr

Extract

Japanese site near Kizukuri, Aomori Prefecture, and the name applied both to a large class of pottery made in northern Japan in the Latest Jōmon period (c. 1000-c. 300 bc) and to the culture that produced such wares. Referred to in feudal land records as early as 1623, Kamegaoka was first excavated in 1896, was designated a National Historical Site in 1944 and was systematically excavated in 1950 by Keio University in Tokyo.

The lowest culture layers yielded abundant artefacts, including highly finished small pottery vessels, clay figurines (dōgu; see Japan §V 2.), engraved pottery plaques, stone swords and phalli, magatama (comma-shaped beads), antler and bone tools and wooden and lacquered objects. The burial of figurines with other artefacts indicates a site of communal ritual activity. The figurines are characterized by ‘snow goggle’ (shakōki) eyes and elaborate headdresses, distinctive features that also appear in figurines found outside the Kamegaoka culture....

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