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Welcome to African Archaeology!

The Journal of African Archaeology is an international peer-reviewed periodical appearing half-yearly since 2003. It publishes original papers addressing recent research and developments in African archaeology and related disciplines. The journal's main purpose is to provide scholars and students with a new pan-African forum for discussing relevant topics on the cultural dynamics of past African societies.

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Vol. 9 (2) 2011

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T.N. Huffman & J. du Piesanie

Khami and the Venda in the Mapungubwe Landscape

Journal of African Archaeology, Volume 9 (2), 2011, pages 189-206, DOI 10.3213/2191-5784-10197

Abstract
In the Mapungubwe landscape, the Khami phase grades into the historic Venda period. Khami occupation, however, differs markedly from recent Venda settlement. Among the differences, rainfall was more consistent in the 15th and 16th centuries, and the Limpopo Valley supported several thousand people living on cattle posts and in agricultural villages. In contrast, 19th century Venda capitals virtually housed the entire chiefdom, totalling only some 350 people. A slow process of acculturation led the Venda-speaking Machete chiefdom to become Sotho. When Mapungubwe was discovered in the early 1930s, the chiefdom had already disintegrated, and the people spoke Sotho.

Résumé
Dans le paysage de Mapungubwe, la phase Khami se gradue dans la période historique Venda. L'occupation Khami, cependant, diffère nettement des communautés Venda récentes. Parmi les différences figurent les pluies qui étaient plus régulières dans les XVe et XVIe siècles, et la vallée de Limpopo soutenait plusieurs milliers de personnes vivant sur des postes de bovins et dans des villages agricoles. En revanche, les capitales Venda du XIXe siècle abritaient pratiquement l'entièreté de la chefferie, comprenant seulement un total de quelques 350 personnes. Au cours d'un lent processus d'acculturation, la chefferie Machete parlant la langue Venda est devenue Sotho. Quand Mapungubwe a été découvert dans les années 1930, la chefferie avait déjà désintégrée et le peuple parlait le Sotho.




Keywords: Historical archaeology, Khami phase, Mapungubwe landscape, oral tradition, South Africa, Venda period


© Copyright: Africa Magna Verlag 2011
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Sonja Magnavita, Peter Breunig, Sam Nixon

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Jonathan R. Walz, USA

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Shadreck Chirikure, South Africa
A. Catherine D'Andrea, Canada
Manfred K.H. Eggert, Germany
Elena Garcea, Italy
Diane Gifford-Gonzalez, USA
Timothy Insoll, UK
Tom Huffman, South Africa
Eric Huysecom, Switzerland
David Killick, USA
Savino di Lernia, Italy
Alexandre Livingstone Smith, Belgium
Scott MacEachern, USA
David Mattingly, UK
Susan Keech McIntosh, USA
David W. Phillipson, UK
Gilbert Pwiti, Zimbabwe
Peter Robertshaw, USA
Robert Vernet, France
Lyn Wadley, South Africa

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Gaby Franke, Germany
Annabelle Gallin, France
Richard Byer, Germany

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Anna Rybar, Germany
Carlos Magnavita, Germany


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