A comparison of the lithic industries
from two Azilian sites in Aquitaine:
how to Interpret Different Degrees
of Technical Simplification?
Célia FAT CHEUNG
The Azilian is generally characterized by a simplification of lithic industries, associated with a regional exploitation of raw materials. The variability of these manifestations is studied here through an analysis of the lithic assemblages of two regions where this culture appears to have evolved differently. Two sites are compared, the Pagès rockshelter (Lot, France) and Troubat cave-rockshelter (Hautes-Pyrénées, France), both located in the Aquitaine region, but in very different environmental contexts. Through this comparison, it is possible to address questions concerning adaptations to the environment (reductions sequences that are simple, but applied to two specific environmental contexts) and distinct cultural practices. These differences can be seen in the reduction techniques, even if they remain simple in both cases. At the Pyrenean site, they reveal practices linked to environmental constraints, which are also integrated with regional cultural practices, and reflected in the techno-economic organization.
To cite this article
Fat Cheung C., 2014 – A Comparison of the Lithic Industries from Two Azilian Sites in Aquitaine: How to Interpret Different Degrees of Technical Simplification?, P@lethnology, Varia, 28 p.
Contributions of the 2004 Preventive Excavation
to Understanding the Aurignacian Occupations
at Solutré (Saône-et-Loire, France)
Grégory BAYLE, Céline BÉMILLI, Nelly CONNET
The Aurignacian levels of Crôt-du-Charnier at Solutré (Saône-et-Loire) were the object of a preventive excavation in 2004. This work yielded a considerable amount of faunal remains and thus confirmed the significant role of hunting and its associated technical activities at this site, such as butchery, hide working and the collection of bone materials.
The nature of the lithic industry, composed of a small number of pieces, indicates that human groups came to the site with a toolkit that was manufactured in large part elsewhere. The abundance of bone remains and the scarcity of lithic artifacts raises the following question: does this site, whose topography favored the passage of animals and thus would have made it an attractive location for hunting, correspond to a specialized occupation complementary to a more long-term occupation elsewhere?
In other words, how can we define the Aurignacian occupations of this site? Can we qualify them as “stops” or “camps”? The complexity of these definitions of the nature and function of prehistoric sites is discussed in the case study that we present here.
To cite this article
Bayle G., Bémilli C., Connet N., 2011 – Contributions of the 2004 Preventive Excavation to Understanding the Aurignacian Occupations at Solutré (Saône-et-Loire, France), in Bon F., Costamagno S., Valdeyron N. (eds.), Hunting Camps in Prehistory. Current Archaeological Approaches, Proceedings of the International Symposium, May 13-15 2009, University Toulouse II – Le Mirail, P@lethnology, 3, 169-181.