In the framework of the multidisciplinary analysis carried out at Sant’Angelo Vecchio, a rural settlement located in territory of Metaponto (Basilicata, Southern Italy), the archaeobotanical investigation contributes to a better understanding of the economy of the site and helps to reconstruct the plant landscape of the area during the Hellenistic period. Twenty-eight samples from four pollen sequences and one surface soil sample were selected for pollen analysis in accordance with the archaeological contexts. The 29 pollen samples have been treated according to the routine method in use in the laboratory at the University of Modena. The pollen spectra from the series show some signs of natural environments and considerable evidence of the presence of houses/walls, cultivation, and breeding/pastoral activities near the site. Analyses have shown an intense use of the territory surrounding the site, especially for pastoral or breeding activities. Cultivations of cereal fields would have been made fairly far from the site, while woody plants were only sparingly cultivated. Among them, only some unextended olive groves were present at that time, while vineyards were possibly cultivated near some houses. The most striking feature of the past economy of the site—pastoral practices—has already transformed the landscape into a shrub land where Mediterranean shrubs were well developed after continuous grazing action by herbivores. The pollen data suggest that the exploitation of the territory was more diversified in the past than at present, where the plant diversity seems to have been reduced by a less intense and less varied typology of exploitation. In the past, the more frequent human presence allowed the landscape to be a mosaic of habitats, as fragmentation is among the effects of human action.

Archaeobotanical Analysis / Florenzano, Assunta. - (2016), pp. 159-171.

Archaeobotanical Analysis

Florenzano Assunta
2016

Abstract

In the framework of the multidisciplinary analysis carried out at Sant’Angelo Vecchio, a rural settlement located in territory of Metaponto (Basilicata, Southern Italy), the archaeobotanical investigation contributes to a better understanding of the economy of the site and helps to reconstruct the plant landscape of the area during the Hellenistic period. Twenty-eight samples from four pollen sequences and one surface soil sample were selected for pollen analysis in accordance with the archaeological contexts. The 29 pollen samples have been treated according to the routine method in use in the laboratory at the University of Modena. The pollen spectra from the series show some signs of natural environments and considerable evidence of the presence of houses/walls, cultivation, and breeding/pastoral activities near the site. Analyses have shown an intense use of the territory surrounding the site, especially for pastoral or breeding activities. Cultivations of cereal fields would have been made fairly far from the site, while woody plants were only sparingly cultivated. Among them, only some unextended olive groves were present at that time, while vineyards were possibly cultivated near some houses. The most striking feature of the past economy of the site—pastoral practices—has already transformed the landscape into a shrub land where Mediterranean shrubs were well developed after continuous grazing action by herbivores. The pollen data suggest that the exploitation of the territory was more diversified in the past than at present, where the plant diversity seems to have been reduced by a less intense and less varied typology of exploitation. In the past, the more frequent human presence allowed the landscape to be a mosaic of habitats, as fragmentation is among the effects of human action.
The Chora of Metaponto 6: A Greek Settlement at Sant’Angelo Vecchio
F. Silvestrelli, I.E.M. Edlund-Berry
9781477309476
University of Texas Press
STATI UNITI D'AMERICA
Archaeobotanical Analysis / Florenzano, Assunta. - (2016), pp. 159-171.
Florenzano, Assunta
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11380/1160828
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