Where are the Hunting Camps?
A Discussion based on Lateglacial Sites in the Paris Basin
Pierre BODU, Monique OLIVE, Boris VALENTIN,
Olivier BIGNON, Grégory DEBOUT
With its numerous, well preserved Lateglacial sites, the Paris Basin contributes useful elements to discussions of the notion of “hunting camps” in Prehistory. Several extensively excavated, and sometimes well preserved, stratified sites allow us to address questions concerning the settlement durations and site functions in greater depth than is possible in other contexts. Drawing on examples of Magdalenian and Azilian sites, we discuss the evolution and limits of interpretations of prehistoric occupations. It appears that regardless of the definition retained or its degree of strictness, the functional category of a “hunting camp” does not apply to the Lateglacial sites currently known in the Paris Basin. A broader interrogation, incorporating the Belloisian sites of the very end of the Lateglacial period and beginning of the Holocene, further demonstrates the difficulty of identifying this type of site.