4.4. Spatial distribution of archaeological remains

Figure 6: Spatial distribution of the marine invertebrates from the percentage of the NISP. (Image credit: D. Giazzon, L. Quesnel, C. Mougne)
Figure 6

The distribution of the shell accumulations seems to be confined to specific areas within the enclosure. Shells have only been found inside the ditch of this enclosure and in a single outside pit (F28) (Figure 1 and Figure 6). Four sedimentary samples have been extracted from inside this ditch (accumulations 1, 2, 7 and 8) and one in pit 28 (Figure 6). The quantification used for this distribution is the NISP expressed as a percentage. Inside the pit, accumulations and the percentage of mussel NISP are quite similar, demonstrating that this mussel was consumed in different parts of the site (Figure 6). The distribution of Balanus sp., however, shows an important difference. Barnacles represent between 1 and 2% of the NISP in pit 28 and in accumulations 1 and 2, as opposed to 8.5% in accumulation 8 and 23% in accumulation 7 (Figure 6). These barnacles, found in large quantities, might have become detached when the mussels were prepared or cooked, as previously mentioned. Considering the large quantities of barnacles, the preparation, cleaning and cooking of this shellfish could have taken place at the site, and perhaps in an area close to accumulations 7 and 8 (Figure 6).

Figure 7: Traces of burning on left valves of mussels (Mytilus edulis) in the shell accumulation no.7. (Image credit: C. Mougne)
Figure 7

Burnt shell remains represent 60% of the total NISP and 87% of mussel NISP (Figure 7). The distribution of these remains is, however, heterogeneous at the site. The percentage of burnt mussel remains is significantly higher in the ditch of the enclosure (between 35 and 88% of the NISP) than at pit 28 (1.5% of the NISP) (Figure 8). This seems to indicate either a spatial organisation of the burnt mussel remains or differential treatment of the shells during or after their cooking.

Figure 8: Spectrum of the burned or unburned remains of mussels and barnacles by shell accumulations in percentage of the NISP. (Image credit: D. Giazzon, L. Quesnel, C. Mougne)
Figure 8