Journal of Geographical Sciences

, Volume 17, Issue 3, pp 285-292

First online:

Environmental change and cultural response around 4200 cal. yr BP in the Yishu River Basin, Shandong

  • Gao Huazhong Affiliated withDepartment of Geography and Tourism, Linyi Normal UniversityCollege of Geography and Ocean Sciences, Nanjing University Email author 
  • , Zhu Cheng Affiliated withCollege of Geography and Ocean Sciences, Nanjing University
  • , Xu Weifeng Affiliated withCollege of Geography and Ocean Sciences, Nanjing University

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Neolithic culture series in the Yishu River Basin developed in the order of Beixin culture-Dawenkou culture-Longshan culture-Yueshi culture. During the early and middle stage of Longshan culture (4600–4300 cal. yr BP), the climate in the Yishu River Basin was warm and wet. Paddy-oriented agriculture planted paddy was very developed. The society was flourishing with great amount of archaeological sites. The cooling starting in 4200 cal. yr BP made the paddies shortfall in output or even no seeds were gathered. This situation intensified the discrepancy between population and resource. The scarcity in natural resource led to substantial decrease in population and subsequent drop in archaeological sites. About 4000 cal. yr BP Longshan culture was displaced by Yueshi culture which was relatively underdeveloped, simple and unsophisticated.


Yishu River Shandong 4200 cal. yr BP environmental change cultural response