Food Residue Analysis on Prehistoric Pottery from Kaya Bate Site on The Coastal Hinterland of Kenya New Methodological Applications in the Region
Namunaba, Ibrahim Busolo
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This paper explores the potential of archaeological potsherds for micro-food residue analysis. It is a report on the progress of microscopic analysis of food residues on pottery from Kaya Bate in the coastal-hinterland of Kenya. Microscopic analysis of the internal scrapes of potsherds is being conducted with the objective of isolating fossil lipids from plants and animals, phytoliths and starches of ancient plants that were either domesticated or harvested from the wild which formed part of the diets of that time. So far, four fossil micro-residues have been extracted from sample potsherds from Kaya Bate site. It is expected that the application of microscopic analysis of food residues on a wide range of sample vessels will add value to the way archeologists have interpreted dietary behaviour, subsistence and pottery use by ancient communities.