Ginnerup Revisited. New Excavations at a Key Neolithic Site on Djursland, Denmark

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Lutz Klassen
Uffe Rasmussen
Jacob Kveiborg
Michael Richards
Ludovic Orlando
Jens-Christian Svenning
Kenneth Ritchie
Marianne H. Andreasen
Bente Philippsen
Rune Iversen
Niels N. Johannsen


New excavations of an enclosure-related site at Ginnerup on Djursland, Denmark, in 2020 resulted in the identification of several features containing depositions of marine shells. One of these, A4, is a natural depression with a fill comprised of four consecutively deposited layers, forming an undisturbed stratigraphy, dated by several 14C dates to between c. 3150 and 2950 BC. The oldest layer contained finds from phase MN A Ib of the Funnel Beaker culture, while the remaining three layers yielded finds from the latest Funnel Beaker culture on Djursland (MN A II/III, Ferslev style) with an upwardly increasing content of Pitted Ware culture elements, thereby allowing the emergence of this culture in Denmark to be followed for the first time. Preservation conditions for organic material were excellent due to a content of marine shells, mainly from oysters and mussels, in all layers. In this preliminary account, a survey of the material culture in the four layers is presented, together with 14C dates, zoological investigations of mammal and fish bones, isotope analyses (d13C, d15N and d34S) and aDNA analyses of mammal bones and examinations of plant macro-remains. The abundant bones of wild horses also hold a huge potential for zoological and genetic studies, the results of which can qualify the ongoing debate about the rewilding of horses in present-day Europe.

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Klassen et al. 2023: L. Klassen/U. Rasmussen/J. Kveiborg/M. Richards/L. Orlando/J.-C. Svenning/K. Ritchie/M. H. Andreasen/B. Philippsen/R. Iversen/N. N. Johannsen, Ginnerup Revisited. New Excavations at a Key Neolithic Site on Djursland, Denmark. JNA 25, 2023, 35–65. DOI: