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Middle Neolithic farming of open-air sites in SE France: new insights from archaeobotanical investigations of three wells found at Les Bagnoles (L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, Dépt. Vaucluse, France)

Jesus, Ana and Prats, Georgina and Follmann, Franziska and Jacomet, Stefanie and Antolín, Ferran. (2020) Middle Neolithic farming of open-air sites in SE France: new insights from archaeobotanical investigations of three wells found at Les Bagnoles (L'Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, Dépt. Vaucluse, France). Vegetation history and archaeobotany.

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Abstract

Previous reviews of Middle Neolithic agricultural practice (4400–3500 cal bc) in southern France have highlighted a change in crop assemblages after 4000 cal bc, with a reduction of naked wheat and an increase of emmer and partly of einkorn. The recent investigation of three wells from the site of Les Bagnoles (4250–3800 cal bc) in the periphery of the southern Rhône valley yielded an unprecedented amount of waterlogged uncharred and charred plant macro remains that offer new insights into crop diversity and its changes over time. The results from the wells at Les Bagnoles were compared with other dated sunken features from open-air sites (in contrast to caves and rock shelters), with the aim of identifying patterns sug-gesting changes in the crop spectra between the early (MN1) and late (MN2) Middle Neolithic phases from taphonomically comparable contexts. The results from Les Bagnoles demonstrate that oil crops and pulses are underrepresented in dry sites and that they were a significant part of Middle Neolithic agriculture. They also indicate an increase in the representation of einkorn (instead of emmer) during MN2 that is also visible in other open-air sites. The comparison of the archaeobotani-cal results with silo storage capacity values as a proxy for average production capacity per household leads us to propose a possible drop in naked wheat productivity and opens new questions in factors affecting crop choice at the beginning of the 4th millennium cal bc.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Umweltwissenschaften > Integrative Biologie > Archäobotanik (Antolin)
UniBasel Contributors:Antolín, Ferran and Sousa Jesus, Ana Cláudia and Follmann, Franziska and Prats Ferrando, Georgina and Jacomet, Stefanie
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0939-6314
e-ISSN:1617-6278
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Language:English
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Last Modified:25 Sep 2020 14:39
Deposited On:25 Sep 2020 14:39

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