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Open Access item El yacimiento de la Albareja (Fuenlabrada, Madrid): un ejemplo de poblamiento disperso de la primera Edad del Hierro

Authors:Consuegra, Susana
Díaz-del-Río, Pedro
Keywords:Early Iron Age, Central Iberia, Dispersed settlements, Underground houses, Socioeconomic change
Issue Date:14-Apr-2011
Series/Report no.:Zona Arqueológica. Estudios sobre la Edad del Hierro en la Carpetania. Registro arqueológico, secuencia y territorio. Volumen II.
10. Alcalá de Henares, 2007
Abstract:The site of La Albareja (Fuenlabrada, Madrid) was discovered as a result of the archaeological assessment of Madrid’s southern subway (VIA sector of Metrosur). Preliminary surface and subsurface analyses and open-area excavations determined the presence of three small pits and a stratified area of 344’45 square meters. The excavations in this area recovered a sequence of at least four structures with related postholes that we consider small huts functionally attached to a big underground oval structure. The site is located on a smooth slope of a secondary valley. This fact, together with the existence of occasional postholes, the presence of a layer of wood imprints in mud, the existence of hearths, and the shape and section of the main structure itself suggests its interpretation as an underground hut. None of these wattle and daub buildings would be visible until actually inside the small secondary valley bottom where it is set. All the material evidence points to an early Iron Age (circa VII century BC –in non calibrated dates) dispersed rural settlement. The site may be contemporary to the hilltop site of Cerro de San Antonio and the close-by site of Sector III de Getafe, actually located in a very similar topographic setting. La Albareja may be interpreted as a small household, part of a more general dispersed rural settlement pattern. Although dependence from a nuclear ‘central’ settlement could be a plausible hypothesis, we up-to-date lack one such site in the surroundings. The open-area excavation of La Albareja shows how the previously thought to be domestic huts may in fact be small timber building functionally subsidiary to bigger close-by domestic spaces. The structure of this settlement may in fact be a good evidence of the socioeconomic changes initiated some time around the end of the Bronze Age.
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