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Coupe transversale de l’abri sous-roche du site du rocher de l’Impératrice

Cross-section of the rock shelter at the Rocher de l’Impératrice site in Plougastel-Daoulas, Finistère. This shelter, where digging began in 2013, was mainly occupied at the start of the Azilian, around 14,500 years ago. It was used for short periods by hunters visiting the valley that is now under the sea. The most recent stratum, 101, is made up of colluvium and reworked deposits. Layer 108 is made up of a scree of quartzite rock in colluvium, while layer 102, containing Azilian artefacts, is a loessial silt in a secondary context with many cryoclastic angular boulders. The Azilian developed during the Late Glacial period following the Ice Age, which was characterised by major climate disruption. At that time, the sea level was 90 metres lower. In this shelter used for hunting activities in the valley, flint tools have been found as well as engraved schist tablets. These remains constitute a major archaeological discovery for a little-documented period of prehistory. (Naudinot N, Bourdier C, Laforge M, Paris C, Bellot-Gurlet L, Beyries S, et al. (2017) Divergence in the evolution of Paleolithic symbolic and technological systems: The shining bull and engraved tablets of Rocher de l'Impératrice. PLoS ONE 12(3): e0173037.)

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