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Nanterre, France

Drucker D.G.,University of Tubingen | Bridault A.,21 Allee Of Luniversite | Cupillard C.,Service regional de lArcheologie de France Comte | Cupillard C.,Laboratoire Of Chrono Environnement | And 2 more authors.
Quaternary International | Year: 2011

Red deer (Cervus elaphus) is a flexible species that survived the significant climatic and environmental change toward warming temperature and forested landscape of the Late-glacial to early Holocene transition (ca. 17-6 ka cal BP). To investigate the conditions of ethological adaptation of red deer at that time, isotopic analysis of carbon, nitrogen, sulfur in collagen (δ13Ccoll, δ15Ncoll, δ34Scoll) and of oxygen in phosphate (δ18Op) were performed on red deer from archaeological sites of the French Jura and the western Alps. Fifty out of eighty two samples benefited from direct AMS radiocarbon dating, which confirmed the few number of red deer record during the cold Younger Dryas oscillation (ca. 12.8-11.6 ka cal BP) in Western Europe. The French Jura red deer showed a significant decrease in their δ13Ccoll values and increase in their δ15Ncoll values in the early Holocene compared to the Late-glacial, which is most likely due to the change in environment from open areas with low pedogenic activity to warm dense forests with increasing soil maturity. In contrast, the stable δ13Ccoll and δ15Ncoll values over time in the western Alps were thought to indicate a change to higher altitude for the red deer habitat in this mountainous region. A decrease of the δ18Op values between the Late-glacial and the early Holocene was observed in the western Alps red deer, in contrast to the expected increase with rising temperature which was indeed confirmed for the French Jura red deer. The multi-isotope results pointed to open areas home range at higher altitude for the Alps red deer in the Holocene compared to the previous period. The similarity of the δ34Scoll patterns with those of the δ15Ncoll suggested the primarily influence of soil activity on the 34S abundances recorded by red deer in a purely terrestrial context. Red deer of the French Jura on one hand and of the western Alps on the other hand showed different adaptive response to the global warming of the early Holocene, with an ethological change in the first case and a change in home range in the second case. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd and INQUA. Source

Drucker D.G.,University of Tubingen | Bridault A.,21 Allee Of Luniversite | Cupillard C.,Service regional de lArcheologie de France Comte | Cupillard C.,Laboratoire Of Chrono Environnement
Quaternary International | Year: 2012

The Jura Mountains are considered to be a region where phases of ice cap extension and retreat in response to climatic variation during the Upper Pleniglacial and Lateglacial (ca. 24,000-12,800 cal BP) are well reflected in the vegetation and animal spectrum composition. A new set of direct AMS radiocarbon dates of collagen from reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) bones found at archaeological sites indicated an almost continuous occupation of the Jura region since the end of Last Glacial Maximum, at ca. 24,000 cal BP, until its local disappearance around 14,000 cal BP. To investigate a possible change in reindeer ecology, isotopic analysis of carbon, nitrogen, sulfur in collagen (δ 13C coll, δ 15N coll, δ 34S coll) were performed on the dated specimens. A decrease in the δ 13C coll and δ 15N coll values of Jura reindeer was found at the beginning of the Lateglacial period around 16,300-15,600 cal BP. While the change in δ 13C coll values was better explained by a change in diet composition with a decreasing input of lichens, the relative low δ 15N coll values of the reindeer during the Lateglacial was consistent with a geographical pattern of soil maturity inherited from the Last Glacial Maximum. The same pattern was also seen in the δ 15N coll values of the Lateglacial horse (Equus sp.) and red deer (Cervus elaphus) until ca. 14,000 cal BP. The decrease in reindeer δ 15N coll around 16,300-15,600 cal BP and around 21,000-20,000 cal BP in the Jura region may be linked to the occupation of territories recently released by glaciers that formed during the Heinrich event 1 and the Last Glacial Maximum, respectively. The associated high δ 15N coll and δ 34S coll values found in two specimens indicate the occurrence of areas of high soil activity in a globally cold context. This might correspond to the occupation of refugia in the close surroundings of the Jura region. Such local refugia could explain the capacity of the reindeer to occupy rapidly the newly available territories during phase of glacier retreat. The intensification of the Magdalenian human settlement could have been favored by these local ecosystem expansions. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd and INQUA. Source

Rocca R.,21 Allee Of Luniversite
Quaternary International | Year: 2016

The situation of Central Europe during the Lower Palaeolithic seems to be original. Evidence of human occupations before 0.5 million years ago is sparse and handaxes are absent during the entire Lower Palaeolithic. Despite being located on the “Out of Africa” route towards Europe, this region has not yielded the expected archaeological evidence. At the end of the Lower Palaeolithic, between 0.4 and 0.3 Ma, the lithic industries are mainly characterized by a small tool production. This typical production can be analyzed in two lithic assemblages (Vértesszőlős in Hungary and Bilzingsleben in Germany). If those assemblages are original compared to the Western Acheulean, some elements can be liked to some other industries in Southern Europe. The results of this study of the first lithic industries from Central Europe allow reconsideration of settlement dynamics in Europe at the end of the Lower Palaeolithic. The classical division between Eastern and Western Europe can be discussed, according to the criteria in the definition of the different Lower Palaeolithic cultural entities and technical systems. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd and INQUA Source

Debout G.,21 Allee Of Luniversite | Olive M.,French National Center for Scientific Research | Bignon O.,French National Center for Scientific Research | Bodu P.,French National Center for Scientific Research | And 2 more authors.
Quaternary International | Year: 2012

This paper presents a synthesis of current knowledge on the Magdalenian in the Paris Basin. An inventory of sites and a review of the available radiocarbon dates are used to discuss the peopling of this region over a long period, covering the successive Badegoulian, Middle and Upper Magdalenian cultures. A large part of this synthesis is then devoted to the Upper phase of the Magdalenian, which today benefits from an abundant record obtained through several decades of research conducted using a palethnographic approach. The habitation sites, mobility patterns and subsistence strategies of human groups are discussed from a multidisciplinary perspective integrating the most recent discoveries. These discoveries allow the proposal of a model of territorial occupation based on reduced and small scale mobility patterns. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd and INQUA. Source

Despite being at the heart of the question of the emergence of the European Upper Palaeolithic, the Aurignacian osseous industry is essentially known by the production of split-based points, ornaments and portable art whereas bone tools, usually dedicated to domestic tasks and with variable technical complexity, have been largely ignored. However, when the high number of unworked tools is included - i.e. bone fragments recovered from food processing and used directly as tools with no previous shaping phase - bone tools represent a significant proportion of the Early Aurignacian industry. Among these unworked tools, is a newly-discovered type: " unworked intermediate tools." This article presents a detailed description based on taphonomic, typological and technological characters. It shows that these tools are diaphyseal fragments which are used directly as a wedge, very likely for woodworking and perhaps for antler processing. The processes behind the appearance of osseous technology at the beginning of the Upper Palaeolithic in Europe are then discussed in light of this discovery and, more generally, the revised composition of the Early Aurignacian toolkit. The high proportion of unworked bone tools, a type more commonly associated with the Middle Palaeolithic, suggests a more gradual technological shift between Middle and Upper Palaeolithic than has previously been considered. As part of this hypothesis, the emergence of working osseous material could be due to a gradual transfer of techniques previously applied to wood, as others have proposed. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. Source

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