Illuminating the cave, drawing in black: wood charcoal analysis at Chauvet-Pont d'Arc

Abstract : The Grotte Chauvet is world renowned for the quality and diversity of its Palaeolithic art. Fire was particularly important to the occupants, providing light and producing charcoal for use in motifs. Charcoal samples were taken systematically from features associated with the two main occupation phases (Aurignacian and Gravettian). Analysis showed it to be composed almost entirely of pine (Pinus sp.), indicating the harsh climatic conditions at this period. No distinction in wood species was found between either the two occupation episodes or the various depositional contexts. The results throw new light on the cultural and palaeoenvironmental factors that influenced choices underlying the collection of wood for charcoal production.
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Submitted on : Thursday, September 20, 2018 - 10:40:56 AM
Last modification on : Tuesday, July 9, 2019 - 10:11:22 AM

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Isabelle Théry-Parisot, Stephanie Thiebault, Jean Delannoy, Catherine Ferrier, Valérie Feruglio, et al.. Illuminating the cave, drawing in black: wood charcoal analysis at Chauvet-Pont d'Arc. Antiquity, Antiquity Publications/Cambridge University Press, 2018, 92 (362), pp.320 - 333. ⟨10.15184/aqy.2017.222⟩. ⟨hal-01877648⟩

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