Maasai Enkang, Mt. Suswa, Central Rift, Kenya

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What May Have Become of the Nderit Peoples


Nderit Settlement, 4000 to 5000 BP
 
  1. This map shows the location of sites in East Africa from which Nderit pottery has been recovered. The core area of Nderit settlement is shown in the Turkana Basin.

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Early spread of Nderit culture, ca. 4000 BP.
 
  2. This map depicts the spread of Nderit pastoralists southward along the Rift Valley into the Kenya Highlands and surrounding areas. Thisregion was probably well populated by these pastoralists about 3500 years ago.

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Differentiation of Nderit societies, ca. 4000-2500 BP.
 
  3. Once the basic Nderit pastoral adaptation had spread, Nderit communities began to their local environments and probably compete with one another pasturage. As a result, their cultures differentiated, including the form of their pottery. We have very little firm evidence from this period, so this part of the model remains a speculative hypothesis to be tested in the future.

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Later Evolution & Interaction of Pastoralists, 2500-2000 BP.
 
  4. In the period from 2,500 to 1,600 years ago, there is a great deal of evidence regarding pastoral societies in the Central Highlands and northern Kenya. Some of these societies have developed from earlier Nderit communities while others represent the spread of new pastoral communities southward out of the Sudan.

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