Tuesday, May 31, 2016

0347 - Remembering Moreiros.

Moreiros 2 is a set of ditched and probably palisade enclosures dating from the 4th millennium BC (but possibly also from the 3rd). Basically is still to be excavated. Only some sections of ditches were cleaned (where they were affected by a query) when the site was discovered by Rui Boaventura, and were dated from the Late Neolithic in the context of my project on ditched enclosures. The collected material was recently studied in a master thesis, hopefully to be published in the coming times. But the geophysics done in 2011 provided the main information about the site, showing its complex temporalities and plans (see here).  

Today I remembered those days, when a small and happy team was measuring Moreiros, escorted by the local cows.

Becker and the cows. 

The team: Rui Boaventura, Helmut Becker, António Valera. Nelson Cabaço.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

0345 - Enclosures and mobility: the case of Perdigões

Ditched enclosures, namely the large ones, are some of the best contexts to develope research on mobility, for they congregate numerous evidences of interaction and movement of people, animals and objects.

At an Iberian scale, Perdigões is now one of the main sites where this research is being developed.
There is a Portuguese Science Foundation project dedicated to this specific topic: “Mobility and interaction in South Portugal Recent Prehistory: the role of aggregation centers”. In this project participate the research unit of ERA Arqueologia, the research centre ICArEHB of university of Algarve and the laboratory Hércules of Évora University.

But this research has a wider projection, for this project is in articulated collaboration with several others related to the same topic.

We also integrate the project “Beyond migration and diffusion: peoples and technologies in prehistory”, financed by the Australian Research Council, and involve Era Arqueologia, the Australian National University, Griffith University and the Centro Nacional de Investigatión sobre l Evolución Humana. The goal will be research and compare mobility patterns between Prehistoric Iberia and the Pacific Islands.

Furthermore, we are establishing a partnership in this topic with another FCT project: “Beaker origins: Testing the hypothesis of late Neolithic dispersals from Iberia using both ancient and contemporary mitochondrial genomes” developed by Minho University with the collaboration of the doctoral scholarship programme at Huddersfield University (UK) entitled Genetic Journeys into History: The Next Generation (running 2015–2020).

Finally, we are engaged in other projects in phase of application, namely two on diets and mobility of animals in Iberia and another that will join the European Atlantic facade, “6,000 years of Farmers and Food: Reconnecting Atlantic Heritage” (working title), that will join institution from Ireland, Scotland, Wales, England, France, Portugal and Spain.

The participation of Perdigões complex of enclosures in all these projects, some of them already with preliminary results, puts it in a unique position (in Iberian terms) in the context of the actual focus of research in mobility in Prehistory at an international level.

But this is the result of the way the Global Program of Research of Perdigões was conceived and is being developed.

(post taken from: http://perdresearch.blogspot.pt/)

Monday, May 9, 2016

0344 - Beakers and enclosures

In the next 12 and 13 of May, in a Iberian meeting taking place at the Faculdade de Letras of Lisbon University, I will be talking about beakers and their social roles in two different enclosures: Fraga da Pena in Central/North Portugal and Perdigões in the South. A walled enclosure and a ditched one. 

Some International beakers from Perdigões enclosures

Nailed impressed Beakers from Fraga da Pena walled enclosure.

There are many differences between these two contexts and between their “beaker expressions”. But there are also some similarities: the ways the characteristics of both sites are intrinsically related to the social roles that beakers seem to have been performing there. Two good examples of a contextualism sound bite: that objects and contexts are meaningfully bonded.  Discussing beakers as an entity regardless their contextual specificities is a possible approach at a large scale of analysis, but it would hardly enlighten on the diverse ways they were historically active and regionalized.