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Oceania, Australia

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Oceania and Australia surely was at the far extreme reaches of the world, from a Carolingian point of view. Should the Carolingians get knowledge of those worlds, this might have been from merchants


Peoples who eventually populated the islands of the Pacific Ocean -the modern historiography calls them 'Austronesians'- left southern China and crossed the strait of Taiwan, settling there, about 8000-4000 B.C. Then, in 5000-2500 B.C., due to demographic pressure or to the prestige of founding new communities, those people kept moving, reaching the Philippines -they colonized until 1500 B.C. At that time, they had also reached the Sulawesi, northern Borneo, the Moluccas and Java. From the Moluccas, some sailed East and spread to the islands of Melanesia (Papua New Guinea and such) and Micronesia (the Marshall islands, Kiribati and such) between 1200 and 500 B.C. as others went West, reaching Sumatra, the Malay peninsula and southern Vietnam. Seafaring culture Lapita traced their ancestry back to Taiwan but emerged through what is present-day Papua New Guinea. When they went further into the Pacific Ocean areas -- likely in several waves -- they carried some Papuan ancestry but still spoke languages from a linguistic family common in the islands southeast Asia, or the Austronesian. Polynesia was reached by they year 0, as Hawaii or Easter Island by 500 A.D. It's not before 1300 A.D. that New Zealand was populated by those peoples. About 1400 A.D. a climate anomaly in the South Pacific when trade winds towards New Zealand were strengthened between 800-1600 A.D., could have eased sailing from central East Polynesia to New Zealand and performed aboard sophisticated canoes. In the Indian Ocean, those peoples had moved up to the great island of Madagascar, in 700 A.D. India and China were trade partners during the first millenium A.D., leading to Indianized states in Indonesia, as Islam arrived in the 10th century, with Muslim merchants


Australia, that large island, was reached by humans about 48,000-42,000 years ago as peoples could cross via land bridges or short-sea crossings from today's southeastern Asia, as they became the ancestors to the current indigenous, mostly gatherers-hunters. Such people might be related to peoples in East Africa and the Dravidian peoples of India. The easy links with southeastern Asia dipped by 13,000 years ago, leaving those people isolated, except in the neighbourhood of the Torres Strait Islanders, where the Australians got trade contacts with the sea-faring people from New Guinea. The Australian Aboriginals organized into clanic and tribal systems, progressively innovating technologically in the last 3000 years, even having small scale agricultural developments or semi-permanent settlements, from their hunters-gatherers culture. There were about 500,000 Aboriginals when the Europeans reached Australia by 1788. Arab or Chinese traders might have reached the northern shores of Australia too about the 9th century as Indians might have come there near the year 0 A.D. Tasmania was populated at the same time, and by the same people than Australia, 40,000 years ago and the rise of sea level 12,000 ago isolated this part of the Aboriginals. Europeans, mostly Dutch ones, began to explore the neighbourhoods of Australia, down to Tasmania, during the 17th century as it's the famed Captain James Cook who is considered the real explorer of Australia, beginning about 1770

Website Manager: G. Guichard, site Learning and Knowledge In the Carolingian Times / Erudition et savoir à l'époque carolingienne, Page Editor: G. Guichard. last edited: 10/6/2014. contact us at
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