Traditions Covered

Image of eHRAF Archaeology database

Image of eHRAF Archaeology database

In the online eHRAF Archaeology database the mostly prehistoric cultures included are organized by regions (e.g. North America), subregions (e.g. Southwest) and subsistence types (e.g. hunter-gatherers).  Every year five archaeological traditions with approximately 10,000 pages are added to eHRAF Archaeology.

The table below gives an overview of the types of traditions currently included in eHRAF Archaeology and can be sorted by the following functions: culture name, region, subregions, subsistence and sample types.   The table, sortable by columns, gives a good insight into the types of prehistoric cultures and tradition sequences covered in the online eHRAF Archaeology database.

All collected, analyzed and indexed archaeological documents (e.g., books, journal articles, monographs) for a prehistoric culture can be found in the Collection Documents tab in the Browse Traditions section of the eHRAF Archaeology database. The archaeological documents are also searchable in the eHRAF Basic or Advanced Search.

Information about how subsistence types are classified for the cultures in the eHRAF Archaeology database scroll down to the bottom of the page.

1AsiaEast AsiaDawenkouAF50horticulturalists71053
2AsiaSouth AsiaGanges NeolithicAQ50other subsistence combinations10757
3EuropeGeneral EuropeBell BeakerE050intensive agriculturalists91342
4Middle EastMiddle EastIranian Bronze AgeMA50agro-pastoralists72198
5North AmericaArctic and SubarcticNortonNA50hunter-gatherers251665
6North AmericaArctic and SubarcticProto-AthapaskansND50hunter-gatherers321171
7OceaniaPolynesiaHawaiianOV50horticulture to intensive agriculture61291
8South AmericaCentral AndesAndean Regional DevelopmentS050agro-pastoralists122741
9South AmericaNorthwestern South AmericaManteñoSD50horticulturalists51262
10South AmericaCentral AndesAymara KingdomsSF50agro-pastoralists111202
11EuropeGeneral EuropeImpressed WareE051primarily hunter-gatherers381258
12AfricaNorthern AfricaLate Pleistocene–Early Holocene MaghrebM050hunter-gatherers131145
13AsiaCentral AsiaScythian-SarmatianMA51pastoralists6986
14AfricaNorthern AfricaKhartoum NeolithicMS50other subsistence combinations51342
15North AmericaGeneral North AmericaEastern Arctic Small ToolN050hunter-gatherers27745
16North AmericaNorthwest Coast and CaliforniaLate Southern CaliforniaNS50hunter-gatherers202298
17Middle America and the CaribbeanNorthern MexicoHuatabampoNU75primarily hunter-gatherers3669
18Middle America and the CaribbeanMaya AreaClassic MayaNY53intensive agriculturalists304320
19OceaniaMelanesiaNew Guinea NeolithicOJ50horticulturalists9488
20Middle America and the CaribbeanCaribbeanLate CaribbeanS051intensive agriculturalists121860
21AsiaCentral AsiaEastern Central Asia Neolithic and Bronze AgeAJ50agro-pastoralists6187
22North AmericaEastern WoodlandsEastern Middle ArchaicNN50hunter-gatherers28819
23North AmericaPlains and PlateauCascadeNR50hunter-gatherers61191
24Middle America and the CaribbeanCentral MexicoWest Mexico PostclassicNU76intensive agriculturalists151852
25Middle America and the CaribbeanMaya AreaLowland Mesoamerican ArchaicNY50primarily hunter-gatherers8316
26Middle America and the CaribbeanMaya AreaPreclassic MayaNY52horticulturalists632894
27Middle America and the CaribbeanMaya AreaPostclassic MayaNY54horticulturalists431401
28South AmericaNorthwestern South AmericaEarly Northwest South American LittoralS060primarily hunter-gatherers111308
29AsiaSouth AsiaCentral Indian NeolithicAQ63other subsistence combinations14701
30EuropeSoutheastern EuropeSoutheastern Europe Late ChalcolithicE075agro-pastoralists382021
31EuropeScandinaviaScandinavian Iron AgeE087other subsistence combinations201470
32AfricaWestern AfricaWest African Iron AgeFA75other subsistence combinations171914
33North AmericaArctic and SubarcticLate TundraNA45hunter-gatherers201224
34North AmericaEastern WoodlandsInitial Shield WoodlandNC54hunter-gatherers10915
35AsiaCentral AsiaEarly NomadRL60pastoralists361542
36Middle EastMiddle EastEarly Dynastic MesopotamiaMH64agro-pastoralists122148
37South AmericaCentral AndesHighland Andean ArchaicSE47hunter-gatherers to food producers141080
38South AmericaCentral AndesHighland Andean FormativeSE48agro-pastoralists81915
39South AmericaCentral AndesHuariSE65agro-pastoralists24797
40South AmericaCentral AndesAndean Regional StatesSE70intensive agriculturalists172017
41South AmericaCentral AndesTiahuanacoSF45agro-pastoralists201276
42AsiaEast AsiaYayoiAB80intensive agriculturalists29871
43AsiaSouth AsiaIndus NeolithicAQ40hunter-gatherers to food producers9794
44AfricaSouthern AfricaWiltonFX50hunter-gatherers61362
45AfricaNorthern AfricaMiddle Paleolithic EgyptMR45hunter-gatherers81278
46North AmericaEastern WoodlandsHopewellNP55horticulturalists671266
47South AmericaCentral AndesChavínSE49agro-pastoralists131772
48South AmericaCentral AndesInkaSE80intensive agriculturalists244285
49AsiaEast AsiaSoutheast China Early NeolithicAF70primarily hunter-gatherers14725
50AfricaNorthern AfricaLate Paleolithic EgyptMR50hunter-gatherers20876
51AfricaNorthern AfricaUpper Egypt PredynasticMR55intensive agriculturalists252013
52AfricaNorthern AfricaLower Egypt PredynasticMR60intensive agriculturalists211409
53AfricaNorthern AfricaEarly Dynastic EgyptMR70intensive agriculturalists541863
54North AmericaEastern WoodlandsEastern Middle WoodlandNN64primarily hunter-gatherers331116
55North AmericaEastern WoodlandsEastern Late WoodlandNN67primarily hunter-gatherers111784
56AfricaNorthern AfricaProtohistoric EgyptMR80intensive agriculturalists91402
57North AmericaEastern WoodlandsEastern Early ArchaicNN45hunter-gatherers111210
58North AmericaEastern WoodlandsEastern Late ArchaicNN55primarily hunter-gatherers23669
59North AmericaEastern WoodlandsEastern Early WoodlandNN60primarily hunter-gatherers391269
60North AmericaEastern WoodlandsAdenaNP50primarily hunter-gatherers111394
61North AmericaEastern WoodlandsMississippianNP60horticulturalists462105
62Middle America and the CaribbeanGeneral Middle America and the CaribbeanEarly Mesoamerican ArchaicNY30hunter-gatherers45664
63AsiaNorth AsiaTarya NeolithicRY64hunter-gatherers4855
64Middle EastMiddle EastHalafianM086agro-pastoralists242121
65Middle EastMiddle EastUbaidMH55agro-pastoralists341551
66Middle EastMiddle EastLate Chalcolithic MesopotamiaMH60agro-pastoralists313326
67Middle EastMiddle EastJemdet NasrMH62agro-pastoralists17586
68Middle America and the CaribbeanCentral MexicoOlmecNU95other subsistence combinations411993
69Middle EastMiddle EastEpipaleolithicM080hunter-gatherers551791
70Middle EastMiddle EastAceramic NeolithicM084hunter-gatherers to food producers251516
71Middle EastMiddle EastCeramic NeolithicM087horticulturalists32960
72Middle EastMiddle EastAkkadianMH66agro-pastoralists481740
73North AmericaArctic and SubarcticPaleo-ArcticND60hunter-gatherers8425
74Middle America and the CaribbeanCentral MexicoCentral Mexico PostclassicNU93intensive agriculturalists502333
76North AmericaSouthwest and BasinHohokamNT76intensive agriculturalists1574575
77Middle America and the CaribbeanCentral MexicoCentral Mexico ClassicNU92intensive agriculturalists11894
78Middle America and the CaribbeanGeneral Middle America and the CaribbeanHighland Mesoamerican ArchaicNY40hunter-gatherers14576
79Middle America and the CaribbeanGeneral Middle America and the CaribbeanHighland Mesoamerican Early PreclassicNY41horticulturalists12423
80Middle America and the CaribbeanGeneral Middle America and the CaribbeanHighland Mesoamerican Late PreclassicNY42horticulturalists273114
81North AmericaGeneral North AmericaLate Paleo-IndianN037hunter-gatherers641190
82North AmericaSouthwest and BasinEarly Desert ArchaicNT50hunter-gatherers311478
83North AmericaSouthwest and BasinMiddle–Late Desert ArchaicNT55hunter-gatherers551967
84North AmericaSouthwest and BasinMogollonNT85hunter-gatherers to food producers412605
85North AmericaSouthwest and BasinBasketmakerNT93primarily hunter-gatherers13786
86EuropeEastern EuropeNortheastern European Bronze AgeE065other subsistence combinations71767
87North AmericaSouthwest and BasinEarly AnasaziNT95horticulturalists935428
88North AmericaSouthwest and BasinLate AnasaziNT97intensive agriculturalists151207
89South AmericaCentral AndesCoastal Andean ArchaicSE40hunter-gatherers to food producers12569
90South AmericaCentral AndesCoastal Andean Early FormativeSE41horticulture to intensive agriculture221062
91South AmericaCentral AndesCoastal Andean Late FormativeSE43intensive agriculturalists201112
92South AmericaCentral AndesNazcaSE51intensive agriculturalists272572
93South AmericaCentral AndesMocheSE55other subsistence combinations291372
94South AmericaCentral AndesChimuSE75intensive agriculturalists412057

The table above now includes the last five archaeological traditions from installment A14S07 added to eHRAF Archaeology on June 12, 2015:

Coastal Andean Late Formative,  SE43, intensive agriculturalists,  South America, Central Andes, 20 documents, 1112 pages, documents coverage 3000 BP to 2200 BP
Nazca,  SE51, intensive agriculturalists, South America, Central Andes,  27 documents, 2572 pages, documents coverage:  2200 BP to 1200 BP
Moche, SE55, other subsistence combinations, South America, Central Andes, 29 documents, 1372 pages, documents coverage: 1950 BP to 1200 BP
Chimu, SE75, intensive agriculturalists, South America, Central Andes, 41 documents, 2057 pages, document coverage: 1100 BP to 480 BP.  Chimu is also part of the Simple Random Sample (SRS)

Additional Formats

Topics and Cultures in eHRAF: This printable PDF document is an overview of all the topics on cultural and social life, and all cultures, past and present, currently covered in HRAF’s cross-cultural online databases. It serves as handy reference for librarians, educators, and researchers.

Excel format: A comprehensive list of the 94 culture names currently included in the eHRAF Archaeology database. The excel format also includes sequence and installment numbers, OWC codes, region coverage (including subregions), date coverage (beginning and ending dates for cultural materials), subsistence and sample (SRS) types.  This list in excel format is versatile because you can sort the tables to your needs and add or delete any columns you like. The sequence numbers for each culture name make the excel table useful for generating a random sample from eHRAF.  Visit the Cross-Cultural Research section to learn more about random sampling.

Access to the archaeological traditions in the eHRAF Archaeology database requires membership (or temporary password). Contact for access to eHRAF Archaeology.

Subsistence Classification

Hunter-gatherers — also called foragers; depend almost entirely (75% or more) on hunting, gathering, and fishing for subsistence

Hunter-gatherers to food producers — during the tradition the people began as hunter-gatherers and became dependent on food production (55% or more) by the end of the tradition. Food production includes combinations of hunting, gathering, fishing, pastoralism, horticulture, and intensive agriculture

Primarily hunter-gatherers — depend mostly on hunting, gathering and fishing (55% percent or more)

Horticulturalists — depend mostly (55% or more) on simple agriculture (extensive or horticulture). Horticulture frequently requires a long fallow period. This category includes any type of agriculture that is not primarily (55% or more) intensive.

Agro-pastoralists — not any of the above. Pastoralism and horticulture/intensive agriculture combined contribute at least 75% or more to the economy.

Pastoralists — depend mostly (55% or more) on herding or pastoralism

Horticulture to intensive agriculture — at the beginning of the tradition, people depended mostly (55% or more) on horticulture and by the end of the tradition they depended mostly (55% or more) on intensive agriculture.

Intensive agriculturalists — depend mostly (55% or more) on intensive agriculture. Intensive agriculture means a variety of techniques are used so that fields can be permanently cultivated. These techniques can include irrigation, terracing, crop rotation, plows, and/or some sort of agriculture.

Other subsistence combinations — includes other combinations of hunting, fishing, gathering, pastoralism, horticulture, and intensive agriculture

Not assigned — not enough information

Where can Traditions, Regions, and Subsistence types be found in eHRAF?

Overviews of the archaeological traditions can be found in the Browse Tradition section of eHRAF Archaeology, or searched in combination with subjects and keywords in Advanced Search.

In eHRAF Archaeology, a search query can be refined by sample and subsistence type.  This is done after a search in the culture results page.

Subsistence and sample types in eHRAF's results page

Subsistence and sample types in eHRAF’s results page


Related Link:
Refining Culture Search Results in eHRAF by Subsistence Types






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