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Insights into Aurignacian daily life and camp organization: The open-air site of Régismont-le-Haut

Anderson, Lars, Lejay, Mathieu, Brugal, Jean-Philip, Costamagno, Sandrine, Heckel, Claire, de Araujo Igreja, Marina, Pradeau, Jean-Victor, Salomon, Hélène, Sellami, Farid, Théry-Parisot, Isabelle, Barshay-Szmidt, Carolyn, Mensan, Romain, Bon, François
Quaternary international 2018 v.498 pp. 69-98
basins, fauna, industry, limestone, loci, models, France, Mediterranean region
Régismont-le-Haut, an Aurignacian open-air campsite, provides an occasion to investigate aspects of Aurignacian site variability that are rarely broached: (1) the relatively poorly known area connecting the Aquitaine and Mediterranean Basins, and (2) the high-resolution spatial organization of an Early Upper Palaeolithic campsite. While more difficult to integrate directly into chronological models of Aurignacian evolution, mostly derived from stratified rock-shelter and cave sites from the northern Aquitaine Basin, it is argued that studying open-air sites like Régismont-le-Haut can furnish detailed information that rock shelter/cave sites cannot, therefore providing critical building blocks and possible reading keys to help reconstruct prehistoric circulation systems and marry synchronic and diachronic perspectives on variability.A detailed description of the geomorphological and sedimentary context, as well as the differing materials and activities (lithic industry and use-wear, faunal remains, mineral colouring materials, personal ornamentation, limestone blocks, fireplaces) that occur on-site, is provided. A summary of activities occurring in two complementary loci ensues, followed by a preliminary spatial reading of one of the primary domestic units. The contemporaneity of the two loci is then treated, and the article finishes with a discussion regarding how Régismont-le-Haut fits both diachronically and synchronically within the Aurignacian.