Definition of kitchen midden in US English:

kitchen midden


  • A prehistoric refuse heap which marks an ancient settlement, chiefly containing bones, shells, and stone implements.

    • ‘If bones of animals are found in kitchen middens it is proof that they were eaten by people.’
    • ‘Some of these kitchen middens are very valuable to archaeologists; they tell us a lot about the lives of our ancestors.’
    • ‘Archaeologists and anthropologists use the kitchen middens of older civilizations to learn about life during that time period.’
    • ‘Along the coast of Southern California are many kitchen middens, where ancient Californians tossed refuse from their dinners.’
    • ‘Shell middens, also known as kitchen middens, are archeological sites formed through the accumulation of domestic refuse consisting primarily of mollusc shells.’