Home » Uncategorized » CAES Vol. 8, № 2

CAES Vol. 8, № 2


Editor’s foreword


Dating of the Neolithic site of Toksovo by the comparison of frequencies of ornamental imprints on potsherds

Alexander Akulov

The Neolithic site of Toksovo was discovered in 1926, but has never been properly dated, however, a collection of potsherds was picked on it (the site is located in the southern part of the Karelian Isthmus, on the southern bank of Kavgolovo lake). Not far from the site of Toksovo there is another Neolithic site (Hepojarvi) that was properly dated (5314 – 2342 cal BCE). The Comb-Pit Ware of Hepojarvi site is subdivided into three subtypes: the Comb-Pit Ware of the early stage, of the developed stage, and of the late stage. The collection of potsherds of Toksovo site is very close to the developed Comb-Pit Ware of Hepojarvi, and so Toksovo site existed in the 4th millennium – in the very beginning of the 3rd millennium BCE.  Both sites belonged to the same group of people; initially people dwelled on the site of Hepojarvi and later appeared the site of Toksovo.

Keywords: Comb-Pit Ware; Neolithic pottery; ornaments of pottery; mathematical semiotics


A modification of the formula used in the comparison of randomly selected assemblages of potsherds

Tresi Nonno

The formula that was usually used in the comparison of two randomly selected assemblages of potsherds didn’t account for the potential error, though the information about the possible error was reported separately. And so it is useful to have a formula that would account for the potential error. Previously in a special paper it was shown that the potential error is connected with the ratio of numbers of potsherds of the compared assemblages. The potential error can be accounted for if the (1 – δ) coefficient is inserted into the formula (δ is the relative error). This parameter shows how close the compared collections are in the quantitative aspect, and to what extent the possibility of deviation is excluded. Also in the paper is shown a table containing values of the degree of resemblance which were given by a standard set of assemblages of the Pit-Comb Ware.  

Keywords: comparing assemblages of potsherds; mathematical semiotics; ornaments of pottery; semiotics


Think pieces:

Some thoughts on the roots of the Ainu bear ritual iomante

Alexander Akulov, Tresi Nonno

The Ainu bear ritual iomante, in our opinion, began when hunters killed a she-bear and brought her cubs to their settlement, raised them, and then killed them to get their meat; this happened in a very distant past, perhaps even before the Jōmon period. While the cubs were raised, the people began to treat them as beings that had ontological status close to human beings. These bears already were not just prey, and so the killing of such bears should have implied an apology for the murder. Gradually the practice of propitiating the souls of bears developed, and the rites became more elaborated. Bear rituals could exist at least in the late Jōmon: in some sites attributed to this time were found clay figurines depicting bears. These figurines mean that there were certain special notions about bears, and so it is possible to suppose the existence of some bear rituals.

Keywords: Ainu beliefs; bear; bear ritual; Ainu; Jōmon


A formalization of rituals that allows estimating degrees of their similarity

Tresi Nonno

Any ritual is a semiotic system and can be formalized just like any other semiotic system, and after formalization, it is possible to estimate the degrees of similarities of different rituals. Any ritual can be considered as a play/performance and can be described by the following system of sets: Participants (P), Tools and locations (T), Actions (A), and Expected results (R). To estimate the degree of similarity of two rituals should be estimated the degree of similarity of P of one ritual with P of another ritual, T of one ritual with T of another ritual, and so on, finally should be taken arithmetic mean of four received values. The procedures of formalizing and comparison of rituals are shown on the material of the Ainu bear ritual – iomante, Ainu ritual kamuy nomi, and the bear ritual that was practiced in Lithuanian Panevėžys.

Keywords: rituals; comparison of rituals; cultural anthropology; semiotics; mathematical semiotics


Roman townsman in the countryside

Vladislav Semenov

In most studies of the socio-economic history of ancient Rome, attention is paid either separately to urban life or rural life, but the phenomenon of a person entering an alien environment stands aside. In this regard, the question arises: to what extent in ancient times there was a discrepancy between the inhabitants of the city and the countryside. This small study on how a Roman citizen behaves in a village raises a number of problems of this nature. What was the countryside like for the inhabitants of a Roman city? How did he behave there? And whether a Roman citizen wanted to live in a village? The article attempts to find answers to these questions.

Keywords: ancient Rome; ancient city; townspeople; villagers



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