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Mountains, Herds and Crops: the new evidences from the Early Neolithic at the Southern Central Pyrenees

AuthorsGassiot Ballbè, Ermengol; Clemente-Conte, Ignacio ; Rey Lanaspa, Javier; Mazzucco, Niccolò ; Díaz Bonilla, Sara; Obea, L.; Viñerta Crespo, Ángel; Antolín i Tutusaus, Ferran ; Saña Seguí, María; Burjachs, Francesc
KeywordsEarly Neolithic
Southern Central Pyrenees
Cueva Lóbrica
Coro Trasito
Intensive diversified husbandry
Cereals and legumes crops
Orris de la Torbera de Perafita (Andorra)
Obagues de Ratera (Parc Nacional d’Aigüestortes i Estany de Sant Maurici)
Cova del Sardo (Vall de Sant Nicolau)
Issue Date2019
PublisherCSIC - Institución Milá y Fontanals (IMF)
Citation1st Conference on the Early Neolithic of Europe, 6 to 8 November 2019, at Museu Marítim de Barcelona : 141-143 (2019)
AbstractAfter years of intense field work, our knowledge about the Neolithization of the Pyrenees has sharply increased. In the Southern Central Pyrenees, some previously unknown Neolithic sites have been discovered at middle altitudes (1.000-1.500 m asl). One of them is Cueva Lóbrica, which has an occupation phase with impressed pottery dated c. 5400 cal BC. Another is the Coro Trasito, a large rock shelter which preserves evidences of continuous occupations from the Early Neolithic, dated between 5300-4600 cal BC. Over this period, the site was used as dwelling and stockbreeding space and provides an archaeological record displaying an intensive diversified husbandry, with combined herds of sheep, goat, cattle and pig. In addition, the carpological and palynological evidence show the presence of cereals and legumes crops close to the site. Nevertheless, evidences of human occupation at higher altitudes have been documented as well. In Andorra, at the site Orris de la Torbera de Perafita I, an occupation dated between 5600-5475 cal BC have been observed. At the Obagues de Ratera rock shelter, in the National Park of Aigüestortes and Estany de Sant Maurici, an occupation has been dated around 5730-5600 cal BC. Both sites are located in alpine environments, over 2.300 m asl. At the Cova del Sardo, in the Sant Nicolau Valley, at 1.780 m asl, there is another occupation dated to the same period. In all three cases, documented remains suggest brief occupations with no “Neolithic” evidences as pottery or domestic remains. Only after 4800 cal BC, at Cova del Sardo there are clear traces of “Neolithic way of live”, with cereal remains, and evidences for local deforestation and herding practices. In conclusion, in the Pyrenees the patterns of human settlement at the onset of the Neolithic that introduce relevant changes in respect to the former occupations. In an early phase, sites appear located mainly at “middle” altitudes, close to areas were agriculture was possible. It was not until the Late Neolithic, after 3500 cal BC, that higher areas are reoccupied.
Appears in Collections:(IMF) Comunicaciones congresos
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