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Neolithic Tibet

The Neolithic
Fertile Crescent
Heavy Neolithic
Shepherd Neolithic
Trihedral Neolithic
Pre-Pottery (A, B)
Qaraoun culture
Tahunian culture
Yarmukian Culture
Halaf culture
Halaf-Ubaid Transitional period
Ubaid culture
Nile valley
Faiyum A culture
Tasian culture
Merimde culture
El Omari culture
Maadi culture
Badari culture
Amratian culture
Arzachena culture
Boian culture
Butmir culture
Cardium pottery culture
Cernavodă culture
Coțofeni culture
Cucuteni-Trypillian culture
Dudeşti culture
Gorneşti culture
Gumelniţa–Karanovo culture
Hamangia culture
Linear Pottery culture
Malta Temples
Ozieri culture
Petreşti culture
San Ciriaco culture
Shulaveri-Shomu culture
Sesklo culture
Tisza culture
Tiszapolgár culture
Usatovo culture
Varna culture
Vinča culture
Vučedol culture
Neolithic Transylvania
Neolithic Southeastern Europe
Peiligang culture
Pengtoushan culture
Beixin culture
Cishan culture
Dadiwan culture
Houli culture
Xinglongwa culture
Xinle culture
Zhaobaogou culture
Hemudu culture
Daxi culture
Majiabang culture
Yangshao culture
Hongshan culture
Dawenkou culture
Songze culture
Liangzhu culture
Majiayao culture
Qujialing culture
Longshan culture
Baodun culture
Shijiahe culture
Yueshi culture
South Asia
Chopani Mando
Philippine Jade culture
Capsian culture
Savanna Pastoral Neolithic

farming, animal husbandry
pottery, metallurgy, wheel
circular ditches, henges, megaliths
Neolithic religion


Neolithic Tibet refers to a prehistoric period in which Neolithic technology was present in Tibet.

Tibet has been inhabited since the Late Paleolithic.[1] During the mid-Holocene, Neolithic immigrants from northern China largely replaced the original inhabitants, bringing with them elements of Neolithic culture and technology, although a degree of genetic continuity with the Paleolithic settlers still exists.[1]


During the mid-Holocene, Neolithic settlers from northern China migrated to Tibet,[1] possibly from a mixture of the Yangshao culture, which inhabited modern-day Henan, Shaanxi, and Shanxi, and the Majiayao culture, which inhabited the upper Yellow River region in modern-day Gansu and Qinghai.[2] Archaeological evidence suggests that the spread of the Sino-Tibetan proto-language was caused by the westward expansion of the Yangshao culture, intermingling with the Majiayao culture, which expanded further west into the Himalayas.[2] The neolithic cultures of Kashmir, northern Sikkim, Chamdo, and Bhutan are all the result of this migration into the Tibetan Plateau, primarily through the use of two routes.[2] The first, the southward route through modern-day Sichuan into Sikkim, Bhutan and southeastern Tibet, and the second, a westward path through the Karakoram mountain range, into Kashmir.[3]

Various models for how and why the migrations occurred have been proposed, although additional research is necessary to verify the different models.[4]


The divergence in the Sino-Tibetan language family between the Bodish languages, including the Tibetan languages, and the Sinitic languages of China likely occurred during this migration.[2]

Archaeological sites

Evidence of neolithic Tibetan inhabitants and settlements have been found mainly "in river valleys in the south and east of the country".[5] Archaeological sites consist of those in Nyingchi County, Medog County, and Qamdo County. Archaeologists have found pottery and stone tools, including stone axes, chisels, knives, spindle-whorls, discs, and arrowheads.[5] Findings in Nyingchi culturally resemble the Neolithic Qijia culture in Gansu and Qinghai, while findings in Qamdo resemble the Dadunzi site in Yunnan, although there may be some connections with the Neolithic culture of the Yellow River valley.[5]



  1. ^ a b c Zhao M, Kong QP, Wang HW, Peng MS, Xie XD, Wang WZ, Jiayang, Duan JG, Cai MC, Zhao SN, Cidanpingcuo, Tu YQ, Wu SF, Yao YG, Bandelt HJ, Zhang YP. (2009). Mitochondrial genome evidence reveals successful Late Paleolithic settlement on the Tibetan Plateau. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 106: 21230–21235. doi:10.1073/pnas.0907844106 PMID 19955425
  2. ^ a b c d Blench, pp. 76-77
  3. ^ Blench, pp. 77-78
  4. ^ Madsen, p. 159
  5. ^ a b c Harmatta, pp. 164-165


  • Blench, Roger. Archaeology and Language II: Archaeological Data and Linguistic Hypotheses, Volume 2 (1999) Psychology Press. ISBN 0-415-11761-5
  • Harmatta, János. History of civilizations of Central Asia, Volume 1 (2005) UNESCO. ISBN 92-3-102719-0
  • Madsen, David B., Fa-Hu Chen, Xing Gao. Late quaternary climate change and human adaptation in arid China (2007) Elsevier. ISBN 0-444-52962-4