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Human settlement and landscape dynamics on the coastline south of the Gironde estuary (SW France): a multi-proxy approach

Abstract : The Gironde estuary in SW France is the largest in Western Europe and has attracted human populations since prehistoric times. From the 1970s to the 1990s, intense archaeological research was undertaken on the long and highly dynamic coastline just south of the estuary mouth. In recent years, the combined action of increased coastal erosion and human pressure has proved a serious threat to the integrity of archaeological sites in the area. As a consequence, a whole array of previously unrecorded archaeological remains across the intertidal zone and coastal strip is being exposed. In this context, innovative interdisciplinary research since 2014 is yielding new information about the settlement and landscape dynamics and about the long-term interaction between human societies and the environment. The sedimentary context and the exceptional preservation conditions of organic remains have made possible a multi-proxy approach combining archaeological, geomorphological, palaeobiological, and archaeoentomological methods. In this paper we discuss the different approaches and the way they jointly contribute to the project. The results obtained so far from this multi-proxy approach challenge the traditional view of the historic occupation and the landscape dynamics around the Gironde estuary from prehistoric times to antiquity. They show that the intense occupation of this area during certain periods of human history is related to the development of marshy environments, which can now be analyzed at higher temporal resolution owing to this approach.
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Contributor : Pierre Stephan Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Wednesday, December 9, 2020 - 10:29:04 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, April 27, 2022 - 4:02:31 AM



Elias Lopez-Romero, Florence Verdin, Frédérique Eynaud, Camille Culioli, Alizé Hoffmann, et al.. Human settlement and landscape dynamics on the coastline south of the Gironde estuary (SW France): a multi-proxy approach. Journal of Island and Coastal Archaeology, Taylor & Francis, In press, ⟨10.1080/15564894.2021.1880505⟩. ⟨hal-03049588⟩



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