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Landscape change and vegetation history in the city of Lisbon during Roman times and the Early Medieval Period

AuthorsCurrás, Andrés ; Costa, Ana Maria; Freitas, Maria da Conceição; Danielsen, Randi; Bugalhão, Jacinta
Keywordscultural landscape
Early Medieval
human impact
landscape archaeology
land use
Tagus Estuary
vegetation history
Issue Date2020
CitationThe Holocene
AbstractPollen and NPP analysis performed on the sedimentary deposits accumulated in the inter-tidal banks of the Tagus Estuary allow for the reconstruction of vegetation history and landscape changes that occurred in Lisbon from the 1st to the 6th century cal AD. The high chronological resolution of this investigation makes it possible to identify changes in human activities that took place during the Roman period and reveals the extent of land use in the 2nd century cal AD. However, the most considerable landscape transformation of this 600-year period dates back to the late 5th century cal AD, when significant deforestation and increasing human activity, particularly pasturing, spread throughout the territory. This feature bears witness to the outcome of a deep socioeconomic transformation following the disintegration of the Roman administration and sheds light on a poorly known period in this part of Iberia.
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