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The Holocene archaeological sequence and site formation processes at Ifri Oudadane, NE Morocco

Abstract

The coastal site of Ifri Oudadane is one of the most important sites in the Mediterranean Maghreb. Recent excavations have provided a stratigraphy featuring the transition from Epipalaeolithic hunter-gatherers to Neolithic food producers. This transitional process could be defined by various features. The sedimentological field description revealed a change from homogenous sediment to more structured deposits, and similar to the so-called “fumiers” that are characteristic of animal husbandry in caves and shelters around the Mediterranean. Sedimentary units identified in the deposits were confirmed by geochemical and micromorphological studies. Within the Early Neolithic deposits coprolites and calcite spherulites testify to the penning of ovicaprides inside the shelter. Radiocarbon analyses date the change from Epipalaeolithic to Neolithic to approximately 7.6 ka calBP. Preliminary results from archaeozoological and archaeobotanical studies prove the existence of domesticated species in Neolithic deposits. Finally, together with pottery and notched blades, new artefact categories appear, reflecting changing settlement behaviour associated with Neolithic lifeways.

Given the richness of the archaeological material from Ifri Oudadane, which is still under study, the sequence is a key site for the Mediterranean zone of NW-Africa. It has a considerable role to play in the development of future Neolithisation models for the western Mediterranean.

Bibliography

Linstädter, J., Kehl, M. (2012): The Holocene archaeological sequence and site formation processes at Ifri Oudadane, NE Morocco. – In: Journal of Archaeological Science, Vol. 39, p: 3306-3323

Authors Linstädter, Jörg and Kehl, Martin
Type article
Title The Holocene archaeological sequence and site formation processes at Ifri Oudadane, NE Morocco
Journal Journal of Archaeological Science
Year 2012
Volume 39
Pages 3306-3323
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