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© Nicolas NAUDINOT / CEPAM / CNRS Images



Chantier de fouilles du site du Rocher de l’Impératrice, à Plougastel, dans le Finistère

Digging at the Rocher de l’Impératrice site in Plougastel-Daoulas, Finistère. This rock 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 remains of flint tools have been found in this shelter, as well as engraved schist tablets. These tablets, the oldest evidence of artwork in Brittany, show an abstract register (hatching, grids and zigzags) as well as naturalistic representations of horses and aurochs. Traces of charcoal have been identified on several tablets, suggesting that these tablets were painted. Artistic remains from this period are particularly rare, and this discovery provides a link between the figurative art of the preceding Magdalenian culture (Lascaux, Niaux, Font-de-Gaume, etc.) and the development of geometric art painted and engraved on small stones during the Azilian.

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