Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Appears in Collections:Biological and Environmental Sciences Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Use and abandonment of a Neolithic field system at Belderrig, Co. Mayo, Ireland: Evidence for economic marginality
Author(s): Tipping, Richard
Verrill, Lucy
Contact Email:
Keywords: agriculture
climatic change
field systems
mid Holocene
pollen analysis
Issue Date: Nov-2010
Date Deposited: 23-Jan-2013
Citation: Tipping R & Verrill L (2010) Use and abandonment of a Neolithic field system at Belderrig, Co. Mayo, Ireland: Evidence for economic marginality. Holocene, 20 (7), pp. 1011-1021.
Abstract: This paper presents evidence for the nature of early and middle Neolithic farming activity, its impact upon the landscape and environment, and its vulnerability to climatic change, at a sub-peat field system at Belderg Beg, North Co. Mayo, Ireland. Pollen analyses of a 14C dated peat deposit close to the field system indicates that basin peat accumulated from c. 5590 to 5330 cal. BP, probably triggered by farming activities. The palynological evidence indicates that the field system was constructed for pastoral farming, surrounded by woodland. Sediment-stratigraphic analyses show that the soil in the field system was subject to significant erosion, which may have been a causal factor in the local cessation of agriculture in the late sixth millennium cal. BP. Peat humification analyses indicate that surface wetness was greatest at c. 4940 cal. BP, several centuries after abandonment of the field system, coincident in age with evidence for higher precipitation from other sites in North Mayo. Comparison with other records of early and mid-Neolithic agricultural activity and abandonment in the region suggests that the well-recognised mid-Neolithic agricultural decline occurred in the broad context of a shift to a more oceanic climate, but that local factors such as soil quality may have been more important in the exact timing of local agricultural abandonment.
DOI Link: 10.1177/0959683610369503
Rights: The publisher does not allow this work to be made publicly available in this Repository. Please use the Request a Copy feature at the foot of the Repository record to request a copy directly from the author. You can only request a copy if you wish to use this work for your own research or private study.
Licence URL(s):

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
TippingVerrill_Holocene_2010.pdfFulltext - Published Version1.05 MBAdobe PDFUnder Permanent Embargo    Request a copy

Note: If any of the files in this item are currently embargoed, you can request a copy directly from the author by clicking the padlock icon above. However, this facility is dependent on the depositor still being contactable at their original email address.

This item is protected by original copyright

Items in the Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.

The metadata of the records in the Repository are available under the CC0 public domain dedication: No Rights Reserved

If you believe that any material held in STORRE infringes copyright, please contact providing details and we will remove the Work from public display in STORRE and investigate your claim.