Le site portuaire romain de Ratiatum (Rezé, Loire-Atlantique) : politique d'échantillonnage et études paléoenvironnementales (2013-2016)

Abstract : Between 2005 and 2016, the ancient harbour of Ratiatum (Rezé, Loire-Atlantique) was the subject of planned archaeological excavations which focused on the study of riverbank developments and Roman warehouses in the Saint-Lupien district. This eastern part of the agglomeration urbanized from the years 20-50 of our era and reached its commercial apogee in the course of the second century. Reporting to the city of Pictons, this city spread over about fi fty hectares along the edge of an arm of the Loire which turned progressively into a clogged waterway from the third century onwards. Since 2013, research has focused solely on harbour structures and their immediate environment. The levels exhumed have been the subject of paleoenvironmental studies, particularly important because of the excellent conservation of the remains preserved in a wet and anaerobic environment. Given the great extent of the excavation and the quantity of remains uncovered, the development of rarely applied approaches in fl uvial archaeology has been undertaken. Thus, in order to specify the harbour environment, a strategy for sampling preserved biological remains, both botanical and zoological, has been developed. This strategy, either systematic or punctual according to the excavation areas, consisted in intensifying and orienting the sediment samples to better answer the paleoenvironmental questions. The recommendations adopted for the collection of samples specifi c to each specialist were then listed in order to better meet their demands: samples in sections or buckets, during stripping or excavation phases, sending samples with or without treatment, carried out in the fi eld or in the laboratory (sieving, fl otation, washing), etc. A sample management and processing workshop was also set up on the site. The anaerobic environment characteristic of this plugged fl uvial context has thus constituted a formidable reserve favourable to numerous analyses: archaeozoological and ichthyological, entomological (in sediments and in woodstuff), palaeoparasitological, palynological, carpological, xylological, dendrological, den-hydrochronological, micropaleontological and geomorphological. These sedimentary archives scattered around banks offer unexpected keys to the operation and evolution of the harbour site during Antiquity.
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Aurélia Borvon, David Guitton, Jimmy Mouchard. Le site portuaire romain de Ratiatum (Rezé, Loire-Atlantique) : politique d'échantillonnage et études paléoenvironnementales (2013-2016). Corinne Beck et Marie-Christine Marinval (coord.). Zones humides et archéologie. Actes du VIe Colloque international du Groupe d'Histoire des Zones Humides, Glux-en-Glenne (Nièvre), du 09 au 11 novembre 2017, pp.47-57, 2019, Hors-série 16 - Revue scientifique Bourgogne-Franche-Comté Nature, 978-2-900905-01-2. ⟨hal-02336242⟩

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