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Title: The Early Pleistocene site of Bois-de-Riquet (Lézignan-la-Cèbe, Hérault, France): stratigraphy, dating, fauna and lithics
Authors: Bourguignon, Laurence
Crochet, Jean-Yves
Capdevila, Ramón
Ivorra, Jérôme
Antoine, Pierre-Olivier
Agustí, Jordi
Barsky, Deborah
Blain, Hugues-Alexandre
Boulbes, Nicolas
Claude, Julien
Cochard, David
De Weyer, Louis
Filoux, Arnaud
Firmat, Cyril
Lozano‐Fernández, Iván
Magniez, Pierre
Pelletier, Maxime
Ríos Garaizar, Joseba
Testu, Agnès
Valensi, Patricia
Issue Date: 2014
Publisher: International Union for Prehistoric and Protohistoric Sciences (IUPPS)
Citation: XVII World UISPP Congress, 2014, p. 23-24
Abstract: Ongoing research at the Bois-de-Riquet site (Lézignanla-Cèbe, l’Hérault, France) has significantly increased the archeological data available for this exceptional Lower Pleistocene occurrence. Since its discovery in the 1990’s, the rich paleontological level situated within a basalt flowstone radiometrically dated to 1.57 Ma (archeostratigraphical unit: ‘US2’) has yielded a well preserved large and small mammal assemblage. New biochronological evaluations based on the entire faunal assemblage allow an age evaluation of around 1.3-1.2 Ma for this level (late-Early Pleistocene). A small lithic assemblage in basalt is attributed to anthropic intrusion. It includes some whole pebbles which are alien to the non-alluvial context of the infill. There are also a few small sized, nonmodified flakes. The lithics have been analysed according to a strict selection protocol elaborated on the basis of a systematic experimental program. Microstratigraphical analysis of the deposits combined with updated geological interpretations of the site reveal that, at the time of the accumulation, a small opening existed within the thermal and textural boundary separating the basalt flowstone’s base from its entablature. This shelter was situated within a low cliff juxtaposing a small river. It provided refuge to carnivores and, occasionally, hominins, who took advantage of the shelter and the nearby water source. Five different species of carnivores are identified at the site, including the large hyena Pachycrocuta brevirostris, as well as their coproliths, indicating the use of the cavity as a den. While the bone accumulation may be attributed to carnivores, the human presence already attested by a few stone artifacts is also suspected by the presence of cut marks on rare fossils. This paper synthesizes data from the ongoing interdisciplinary study of the Bois-de-Riquet site, an exceptional Lower Pleistocene occurrence in southern France.
Type: Presentation
Appears in Collections:Congresos, encuentros científicos y estancias de investigación

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