Houli culture

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Houli culture
Houli map.svg
Geographical range Shandong
Period Neolithic China
Dates c. 6500 – c. 5500 BC
Type site Houli
Major sites Yuezhuang
Followed by Beixin culture
Chinese name
Chinese 后李文化

The Houli culture (6500–5500 BC[1]) was a Neolithic culture in Shandong, China. The people of the culture lived in square, semi-subterranean houses. Archaeological evidence shows that domesticated dogs and pigs were used. The type site at Houli was discovered in the Linzi District of Shandong and was excavated from 1989 to 1990. The culture was followed by the Beixin culture.

Evidence of the earliest rice cultivation in the Yellow River basin came from carbonized rice grains from the Yuezhuang site in Jinan, Shandong. The carbonized rice was dated using AMS radiocarbon dating to 7050±80.

Currently, about a dozen sites have been found to be associated with the Houli culture. Five sites from the culture have been excavated so far.[2]

Yuezhang site[edit]

Archaeologists also excavated domesticated millet from the Yuezhuang site.[3] The millet found at Yuezhuang was predominately broomcorn millet and dated to around 8000 BP, making it one of the earliest sites in China to show evidence of millet cultivation.[4] Rice grains were also found at the site.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ The Chinese Neolithic: Trajectories to Early States, pp.193
  2. ^ Liu 2012, p. 138.
  3. ^ Crawford, G. W., X. Chen, and J. Wang Houli Culture Rice from the Yuezhuang Site, Jinan. Kaogu [Archaeology] 3:247-251, 2006. (In Chinese)
  4. ^ Liu 2012, p. 83.
  5. ^ Liu 2012, p. 140.


  • Allan, Sarah (ed), The Formation of Chinese Civilization: An Archaeological Perspective, ISBN 0-300-09382-9
  • Liu, Li; et al. (2012). The Archaeology of China : From the Late Paleolithic to the Early Bronze Age. Cambridge University Press. 
  • Liu, Li. The Chinese Neolithic: Trajectories to Early States, ISBN 0-521-81184-8