Past human mountain settlement patterns and resource and high-altitude landscape exploitation are underexplored research fields in archaeology. This study presents data gathered during more than 20 years of fieldwork in the Pindus range of Western Macedonia (Greece), focusing in par-ticular on Holocene land use. The investigated territory is located around the Vlach town of Sa-marina. The area is partly bounded by Mounts Vasilitsa, Gurguliu, Bogdani and Anitsa, and their interconnecting watersheds between ca. 1400 and 2000 m a.s.l. This research led to the discovery of many sites and findspots of lithic and ceramic artefacts attributed to the Middle and Upper Palaeolithic, Mesolithic, Late Neolithic, Chalcolithic, Bronze Age, and several Historical periods. The radiocarbon results show an unexpected longue durée of Holocene human landscape use. The number of sites, their distribution, location, and subsistence strategies exhibit shifts between the Middle Palaeolithic and different periods of the Holocene, which are closely related to the ex-ploitation of the mountain environment and its resources. Moreover, typical knapped stone arte-facts have been used as a proxy for dating the glacial landforms which characterise the Samarina highland zone; we correlate them to the better-known moraine systems of Mount Tymphi in Epirus and contribute to the reconstruction of the Pleistocene glacial landscapes of the Pindus Range.

Mountain Landscape and Human Settlement in the Pindus Range: The Samarina Highland Zones of Western Macedonia, Greece

Paolo Biagi
Co-primo
Conceptualization
;
Elisabetta Starnini
Co-primo
Writing – Review & Editing
;
2023-01-01

Abstract

Past human mountain settlement patterns and resource and high-altitude landscape exploitation are underexplored research fields in archaeology. This study presents data gathered during more than 20 years of fieldwork in the Pindus range of Western Macedonia (Greece), focusing in par-ticular on Holocene land use. The investigated territory is located around the Vlach town of Sa-marina. The area is partly bounded by Mounts Vasilitsa, Gurguliu, Bogdani and Anitsa, and their interconnecting watersheds between ca. 1400 and 2000 m a.s.l. This research led to the discovery of many sites and findspots of lithic and ceramic artefacts attributed to the Middle and Upper Palaeolithic, Mesolithic, Late Neolithic, Chalcolithic, Bronze Age, and several Historical periods. The radiocarbon results show an unexpected longue durée of Holocene human landscape use. The number of sites, their distribution, location, and subsistence strategies exhibit shifts between the Middle Palaeolithic and different periods of the Holocene, which are closely related to the ex-ploitation of the mountain environment and its resources. Moreover, typical knapped stone arte-facts have been used as a proxy for dating the glacial landforms which characterise the Samarina highland zone; we correlate them to the better-known moraine systems of Mount Tymphi in Epirus and contribute to the reconstruction of the Pleistocene glacial landscapes of the Pindus Range.
2023
Biagi, Paolo; Starnini, Elisabetta; Efstratiou, Nikos; Nisbet, Renato; Hughes, Philip D.; Woodward, Jamie C.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11568/1161685
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