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Title: New archaeological data from Cueva Blanca site (Hellín, Albacete): implications for the knowledge of the Late Mesolithic in the hinterland of Southeastern Iberia
Authors: Mingo Álvarez, Alberto
Barba Rey, Jesús
Uzquiano, Paloma
Casas, Manuel
Benito-Calvo, Alfonso
Yravedra Saínz de los Terreros, José
Cubas, Miriam
Galante Pérez, José Antonio
Avezuela, Bárbara
Martín Lerma, Ignacio
López Precioso, Javier
Hernández, Javier
Palacios, Estrella
Gutiérrez Sáez, Carmen
Issue Date: 2014
Publisher: International Union for Prehistoric and Protohistoric Sciences (IUPPS)
Citation: XVII World UISPP Congress, 2014, p. 635
Abstract: The discovery of Cueva Blanca rock shelter in 2006 and the archaeological excavations and investigations that have been developed subsequently have a noticeable relevance because there is the only stratigraphical reference of human occupation for the Late Mesolithic in a broad area of the northernmost part of Betic mountains. This region houses outstanding levantine rock art sites such as Minateda but traditionally lacks of evidences of Mesolithic / Early Neolithic settlements that can link to those. Cueva Blanca has come to provide the first piece of a puzzle that in the next years is going to increase. This works collects the results coming from the multidisciplinary investigations conducted on Cueva Blanca and the archeological material registered there. We must remark those concerning paleoenvironment, absolutes dating, lithic industry and fauna. The recent data confirms the attribution of Cueva Blanca to the Late Mesolithic. The last excavation campaign (2013) has allowed us to increase the lithic assemblage and to ratify its consideration within the first facies of Cocina. The archaeobotanical analyses indicates a mediterranean open coniferous forest and steppic conditions around the site. Radiocarbon dates points a contemporaneity of the human occupation with the 8.2 cal yr BP event. On the other hand, fauna analyses states the predominant consumption of lagomorphs and the scarce presence of medium-small size hervivores. The closest geographical region where we can find well known Mesolithic sites is the area of Villena (Alicante). Examining the data we defend a similar functionality between Cueva Blanca and the archaeological site of Cueva Pequeña de la Huesa Tacaña. Cueva Blanca was occupied during temporary and seasonal periods in the Late Mesolithic according to the different data that we have handled so far. Despite it, we believe this site has an undeniable importance to deepen in the knowledge of the settlement patterns during this period in the hinterland of southeastern Iberia. In the future new sites belonging to the transition Meso-Neolithic will be make known in this area and therefore we could contrast the possibility of a settlement by the same last hunters-gatherers groups throughout the northern Betic valleys and mountains from Villena (Alicante) to Hellín (Albacete).
Type: Presentation
Appears in Collections:Congresos, encuentros científicos y estancias de investigación

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