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Apports et limites de l’étude des vestiges fauniques à la caractérisation d’un site mésolithique de plein air à Paris : « 62 rue Henry-Farman » (15e arrondissement)

Résumé : The ’62 rue Henry-Farman’ site in the south-west of Paris (15th arrondissement) is located on the alluvial plain of the Seine River, now 250 m from the site. The site’s cultural sequence consists of four occupations, the Mesolithic, Middle Neolithic, Late Neolithic / Early Bronze Age, and the Early Iron Age, but the research presented in this paper focuses exclusively on the Mesolithic period. Field operations and excavations were carried out by the INRAP (Institut national de recherches archéologiques préventives) in 2008. Because of the relatively extensive surface under excavation (5,000 m2), six main concentrations of stone artefacts and animal bone remains (loci 1 to 6) were singled out despite the loose clustering of the cultural debris. Because of the poor preservation of bone collagen, only three bone samples, located on the periphery of the loci, could be radiocarbon dated (AMS). The dates, ranging from 8600 and 7700 cal. BC (2 sigmas), suggest at least two occupation phases. The palaeoenvironmental analyses (molluscs and isotopic signatures of ungulate bone collagen) are congruent with this chronological attribution which is also broadly consistent with the lithic typology, although the latter indicates a relative intra-site time lag. A thorough analysis of the faunal remains (including worked remains), was carried out to identify the discarded remains and determine the activities performed, in order to reconstruct the patterns of animal resources exploitation per cluster of loci. The faunal material (N = 1287) is not large compared to the lithics (ca 24,000). It may be related to the general poor state of preservation of the faunal material as indicated by taphonomic analyses. In spite of a relative intra-site time span, the preservation of the faunal material as well as its taxonomic composition are homogeneous on the scale of the whole site. Wild boar (Sus scrofa scrofa) was the top hunted species. The other ungulates, red deer (Cervus elaphus), roe deer (Capreolus capreolus) and aurochs (Bos primigenius), as well as fur-bearing mammals such as fox (Vulpes vulpes), hare (Lepus europeaus), badger (Meles meles) or pine marten (Martes martes), are represented by very few individuals and specimens, and in different proportions in every locus. The pond tortoise (Emys orbicularis) is also represented by one fragment of carapace. A similar wild boar hunting pattern — focusing on subadults and adults — is documented in every locus. Hunters probably preyed on groups of females with subadults, but adult males were also targeted, as indicated by the presence of six tusks (lower canines), most likely during distinct hunting episodes. Some tusks were used as tools in several loci. Bone point fragments and two worked pieces of antler (one showing a bevelled edge) indicate that hard animal materials from large prey species were also exploited and possibly worked in situ. Large prey carcass portions were discarded in every locus, suggesting that targeted preys were brought complete to the site to be butchered. A relatively expedient butchering technique is suggested based on the discard of anatomical parts still in connection (locus 1) and some un-fractured bones (including long bones). Some portions of the carcasses are likely to have been transported off the loci and off site. Such observations are interpreted as an indication that the butchering and treatment of the carcasses were not performed successively at the same place, the chaînes opératoires were segmented (both in time and space). It is finally concluded that each locus may have mostly resulted from successive and probably short term — seasonal — occupations, each locus resulting from an independent event. Different activities were performed on the site. It is the case for the manufacture of stone tools related to hunting, primary butchering, hide processing, all articulated around animal resource procurement and treatment.
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Charlotte Leduc, Anne Bridault, Bénédicte Souffi, Éva David, Dorothée G. Drucker. Apports et limites de l’étude des vestiges fauniques à la caractérisation d’un site mésolithique de plein air à Paris : « 62 rue Henry-Farman » (15e arrondissement). Bulletin de la Société Préhistorique Française, Société Préhistorique Française, 2013, 110 (2), pp.257-280. ⟨10.3406/bspf.2013.14260⟩. ⟨hal-01529124⟩

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