Le Site de Campu Stefanu (Sollacaro, Corse-du-Sud) une occupation du Néolithique ancien et du Mésolithique dans le contexte corso-sarde

Abstract : The prehistoric site of Campu Stefanu is located in the municipality of Sollacaro in Southern Corsica. It occupies a small hill at low altitude (94 m N.G.F.) at 500 m distance from the left bank of the Taravu river. From Campu Stefanu, the view is confined to a section of the lower valley and opens to the direction of Basi, about 1.2 km to the north-west. The site is linked to the crossing of the river along a main axis that led from the plain to the central and higher valley. The possibilities to exploit its territory, situated in the lower meso-mediterranean vegetation belt, are oriented towards agropastoral use. The archaeological site extends over more than one hectare. The diaclases of local granite facilitated the production of regular slabs, over one meter thick, which were used for the prehistoric constructions. Three rock shelters have been identified to the west (shelter no. 1) and to the east (shelter no. 2 and 3) of the site. Shelter no.1, at the western margins of the settlement displays a series of stratigraphical units (US) testifying to varying levels of preservation of the different periods of use of this space. These deposits provided new documentation on the characterisation of the Mesolithic and the Early Neolithic of the corso-sardinian area. The upper levels contained rare elements of an Iron Age burial. During the Early Bronze Age, an organized sepulchral space was possibly set up in the shelter (?). During the middle and Late Bronze Age, this shelter served primarily as a dumping ground receiving the downhill refuse from the settlement area. Below a sterile level without archaeological remains, which marks a distinct and long period of abandon of the site, an occupation during the earliest Neolithic phases (presence of pottery with incised decoration associated with Cardial pottery of Pienza-Basi-Filiestru style) was discovered. Below this disturbed level, an Early Neolithic occupation can be clearly identified through the significant presence of pottery fragments with impressed decoration made by the edge of a cockle shell (Cerastoderma edule ?). This level has yielded a diagnostic assemblage of the Early Mediterranean Neolithic: impressed cardium decorated ware, similar to the mainland productions of the Hérault, Liguria, Tuscany, Apulia regions but also to the Su Coloru cave in Sardinia. This pottery is associated with a lithic production based on blades and bladelets produced from flint of sardinian origin (area of Perfugas) and from obsidian (analysis of the origin under study). This assemblage matches the research theme on the " process of neolithization " and illustrates the importance of maritime routes on which the islands inevitably were intermediate stations. An original occupation (US 114), seemingly a burial dated between 7000 and 6700 before the Current Era (UGAM 3824) is assigned to the Final Mesolithic. This collective burial contained at least seven individuals including a child and a neonate. The skeletons are represented by sections of the lower and upper limbs, three fragmented skulls have been identified; other, smaller pieces of the skeleton are scattered. Several long bones were found still anatomically connected. The burial of Campu Stefanu yields rare evidence of the first habitants of the island. Its preservation enables studies and analyses that will provide new information on the funerary practices and on the physical biology of these populations in a local framework, but also in the northern Mediterranean basin. Lithic pieces and faunal remains have been uncovered in US 114 but we cannot confirm yet whether they are part of the burial or subject to post-depositional processes. At the margins of the burial, inside the shelter, US 109 contained a substantial amount of bones and burnt bone splitters belonging to small mammals (including Prolagus sardus) and birds. These elements have produced a radiocarbon date indicating a period between 6600 and 6450 before the Current Era (UGAM 3825). Outside the shelter US 124, a deposit assigned to the Mesolithic is located, containing numerous lithic artefacts made from quartz and rhyolite. The nature of these deposits as well as their relationships, have to be evaluated in detail. The process of neolithization in the islands is of particular interest. From this perspective, the site of Campu Stefanu, as well as the neighbouring site of Basi, represent an important step in the human colonization of Corsica.
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Joseph Cesari, Patrice Courtaud, Franck Leandri, Thomas Perrin, Claire Manen. Le Site de Campu Stefanu (Sollacaro, Corse-du-Sud) une occupation du Néolithique ancien et du Mésolithique dans le contexte corso-sarde. La transition néolithique en Méditerranée. Actes du colloque Transitions en Méditerranée, ou comment des chasseurs devinrent agriculteurs, Muséum de Toulouse, Apr 2011, Toulouse, France. pp.283-305. ⟨hal-01009472⟩

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