New data concerning “large blades” in Catalonia: Apt-Forcalquier chert in the Penedès (south of Barcelona) during the Late Neolithic - Chalcolithic

  • Javier Mangado Llach Universitat de Barcelona - SERP-UB
  • Jean Vaquer TRACES-UMR5608
  • Juan Francisco Gibaja Bao IMF-CSIC (Institución Milá y Fontanals - Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas)
  • F. Xavier Oms Arias Universitat de Barcelona - SERP-UB
  • Artur Cebrià Escuer Universitat de Barcelona - SERP-UB
  • Cynthia Belén González Olivares Universitat de Barcelona - SERP-UB
  • Araceli Martín Colliga Servei d'Arqueologia - Generalitat de Catalunya
  • Dioscórides Marín Universitat de Lleida
Keywords: large blades”, Apt-Forcalquier chert, ancient trade, lithic technology, grave goods, Neolithic-Chalcolithic, North-eastern Iberia

Abstract


The study of large chert blades documented in funerary contexts from the Late Neolithic to the Early Bronze Age in the north-eastern part of Iberia has been addressed in recent works by the authors, in which 49 burial sites have been registered with more than 200 large chert blades. In this paper the recent data obtained from the study of seven archaeological sites located in the region of the Penedès (southwest of Barcelona) is presented.

The macroscopic characterization of the knapped stone industries shows their great variety regarding the origin of the siliceous raw material, often coming from outside the analysed region. In some cases their macroscopic features link them to Apt-Forcalquier chert (Haut Provence, France), which was widely distributed in the form of large blades during these phases of Late Catalan prehistory.

The absence of evidence of the chaîne opératoire production of this type of foreign chert in the lithic assemblages in Catalonia lead to the supposition that the dispersion of the blades was done as trade items, and only in a few cases were highly complex technological tools of this kind of raw material distributed (e.g., daggers). Use-wear analysis reveals that these blades were not merely luxury items in grave goods. Far from this idea, they have to be considered as functional, even multifunctional, items. All the same, it is thought that they must have had an important value because they moved from the domestic sphere to the graves. In fact, the pieces that usually remain are not small fragments, but whole or almost whole, large blades that normally remain effective. 

Author Biographies

Javier Mangado Llach, Universitat de Barcelona - SERP-UB

Universitat de Barcelona
Secció de Prehistòria i Arqueologia

SERP-UB
(Seminari d'Estudis i Recerques Prehistòriques - Universitat de Barcelona)
Facultat de Geografia i Història
c/Montalegre 6.
08001 Barcelona
Spain

Jean Vaquer, TRACES-UMR5608
TRACES - UMR 5608
(Travaux et Recherches Archéologiques sur les Cultures, les Espaces et les Sociétés)
Maison de la Recherche 5, allée Antonio Machado
31058 Toulouse
Cedex 9
France
Juan Francisco Gibaja Bao, IMF-CSIC (Institución Milá y Fontanals - Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas)
IMF-CSIC
(Institución Milá y Fontanals - Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas)
c/Egipcíaques, 15.
08001. Barcelona
Spain
F. Xavier Oms Arias, Universitat de Barcelona - SERP-UB

SERP-UB
(Seminari d'Estudis i Recerques Prehistòriques - Universitat de Barcelona)
Facultat de Geografia i Història
c/Montalegre 6.
08001 Barcelona
Spain

Artur Cebrià Escuer, Universitat de Barcelona - SERP-UB
SERP-UB 
(Seminari d'Estudis i Recerques Prehistòriques - Universitat de Barcelona)
Facultat de Geografia i Història
c/Montalegre 6. 
08001 Barcelona
Spain
Cynthia Belén González Olivares, Universitat de Barcelona - SERP-UB
SERP-UB 
(Seminari d'Estudis i Recerques Prehistòriques - Universitat de Barcelona)
Facultat de Geografia i Història
c/Montalegre 6. 
08001 Barcelona
Spain
Araceli Martín Colliga, Servei d'Arqueologia - Generalitat de Catalunya
Servei d’Arqueologia
Generalitat de Catalunya
c/Portaferrisa 1.
08001. Barcelona
Spain
Dioscórides Marín, Universitat de Lleida
Departament de Història
Universitat de Lleida
Plaza Victor Siurana, 1
25003 Lleida
Spain

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Published
15-Sep-2016
How to Cite
Mangado Llach, J., Vaquer, J., Gibaja Bao, J. F., Oms Arias, F. X., Cebrià Escuer, A., González Olivares, C. B., Martín Colliga, A., & Marín, D. (2016). New data concerning “large blades” in Catalonia: Apt-Forcalquier chert in the Penedès (south of Barcelona) during the Late Neolithic - Chalcolithic. Journal of Lithic Studies, 3(2). https://doi.org/10.2218/jls.v3i2.1833