Sauvages et domestiques : les restes animaux dans les sépultures monumentales normandes du Néolithique


fr Anthropozoologica 35 - Pages 17-28

Published on 01 July 2002

Wild and Domestic : Animal remains in the monumental neolithic tombs of Normandy

Animal remains are frequently found associated with grave goods in the megalithic tombs in northern France, whether as worked pieces of personal adornment made from animal hard tissues such as ivory, teeth or bone, or as articulated or disarticulated skeletal parts, or as isolated elements. The study of the animal bone remains from several funerary monuments and collective burials beneath tumuli in Basse-Normandie, which constitutes some of the oldest evidence for megalithic funerary architecture in northern France, shows a clear evolution in the role of animals as grave goods. Several burials beneath long barrows dated to the Middle Neolithic I show the placement of quarters, or even complete carcasses of domestic animals. This is superseded in the Middle Neolithic II by a more symbolic evocation of animals, through pieces of adornment or tools fashioned in material of almost exclusively wild animal origin, which characterize the collective burials of this period.


Neolithic, megalithic tombs, animal remains.

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