Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

First Inhabitants Of Caribbean Brought Drug Heirlooms With Them

Date:
October 25, 2008
Source:
North Carolina State University
Summary:
Scientists have found physical evidence that the people who colonized the Caribbean from South America brought with them heirloom drug paraphernalia that had been passed down from generation to generation as the colonists traveled through the islands.

Examples of inhaling bowls that were likely used for the ingestion of hallucinogenic substances.
Credit: Image courtesy of Dr. Scott M. Fitzpatrick, Department of Sociology & Anthropology, NC State University

A new study led by North Carolina State University's Dr. Scott Fitzpatrick is the first to show physical evidence that the people who colonized the Caribbean from South America brought with them heirloom drug paraphernalia that had been passed down from generation to generation as the colonists traveled through the islands.

Related Articles


The research team used a dating technique called luminescence to determine the age of several artifacts found on the Caribbean island of Carriacou, in the West Indies, and discovered that the items dated back to between roughly 400 and 100 B.C. These dates are well before Carriacou was colonized in approximately A.D. 400. Luminescence testing involves heating a substance and measuring the amount of light it gives off to determine how long ago it was last heated.

Heirlooms are portable objects that are inherited by family members and kept in circulation for generations, Fitzpatrick says, and are frequently part of important rituals. The objects tested for this study are ceramic inhaling bowls that were likely used for the ingestion of hallucinogenic substances. Fitzpatrick says the luminescence dates of the bowls, as well as analysis of the material from which the bowls were made, indicate that the artifacts "appear to have been transported to Carriacou when it was colonized – possibly hundreds of years after they were made."

Fitzpatrick, an assistant professor of anthropology at NC State, says scholars have long thought that the people who settled the Caribbean islands likely brought heirlooms with them – but says the bowls "are the first physical evidence we've found to support that claim."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by North Carolina State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Fitzpatrick et al. Evidence for inter-island transport of heirlooms: luminescence dating and petrographic analysis of ceramic inhaling bowls from Carriacou, West Indies. Journal of Archaeological Science, October 2008; DOI: 10.1016/j.jas.2008.08.007

Cite This Page:

North Carolina State University. "First Inhabitants Of Caribbean Brought Drug Heirlooms With Them." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 October 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081020093410.htm>.
North Carolina State University. (2008, October 25). First Inhabitants Of Caribbean Brought Drug Heirlooms With Them. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 19, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081020093410.htm
North Carolina State University. "First Inhabitants Of Caribbean Brought Drug Heirlooms With Them." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/10/081020093410.htm (accessed April 19, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Fossils & Ruins News

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Cleaners Find Ancient Peru Mummy

Cleaners Find Ancient Peru Mummy

Reuters - News Video Online (Apr. 15, 2015) Cleaners in Peru stumble across an ancient mummy mysteriously dumped near rubbish in the pre-Incan city of Chan Chan. Rough cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
388 Unidentified Pearl Harbor Victims To Be Exhumed, ID'd

388 Unidentified Pearl Harbor Victims To Be Exhumed, ID'd

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2015) The Department of Defense is exhuming the unidentified remains of 388 servicemen who died on board the USS Oklahoma in 1941. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Manuscript by Nazi Code Breaker Alan Turing Sells for $1 Million

Manuscript by Nazi Code Breaker Alan Turing Sells for $1 Million

Reuters - Light News Video Online (Apr. 13, 2015) Alan Turing&apos;s notebook containing the foundations of mathematics and computer science sells at auction for $1,025,000 (USD). Roselle Chen reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Replica Cave Showcases Artistry of Stone Age Man

Replica Cave Showcases Artistry of Stone Age Man

AFP (Apr. 10, 2015) A replica of a cave in the Ardeche, in southern France will be opened Friday to give visitors the chance to see cave paintings produced around 36,000 years ago. Duration: 01:05 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins