Measuring distance in the monumentalities of the Neolithic in Western France

Abstract : In an earlier presentation in Kiel in 2011 (› Measuring distinction in the megalithic architecture of the Carnac region ‹), we used the concept of distinction to explore the ways in which identity was expressed in the world of the Neolithic Armorica through materials, object-signs and representations. For this paper, we shall turn to the notion of distance – whether social or geographic in nature – which is also germane to the question of identity and distinction. We shall start by returning to the extraordinary case of an imported Stichbandkeramik vessel, found in a tomb in the Carnac region. The significance of this find will be re-evaluated in the light of the distribution of the irregularly-shaped bracelets, whose epicentre is located in the Alsace region and with a distribution that extends as far as the Atlantic coast. This measurement of a geographic distance will then be compared with the overall length – in metres – of the engravings found on a specific orthostat in the megalithic tomb of Gavrinis, on the same Atlantic coast: a cumulative length that defies imagination. We shall then make precise estimates of the distances travelled by the orthogneiss stelae that can be found in the same area of France. The significance of such movements lies not only in the long distances involved, but also the need for some kind of seaborne ransportation – other than rafts and longboats – to move monoliths weighing up to 330 tonnes. These three studies – which lead to very different scales of analysis – will ultimately allow us to address the concept of monumentality.
Document type :
Book sections
Complete list of metadatas

https://hal-univ-rennes1.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-02172195
Contributor : Catherine Gorlini <>
Submitted on : Wednesday, July 3, 2019 - 3:34:17 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, November 7, 2019 - 9:57:04 AM

Identifiers

  • HAL Id : hal-02172195, version 1

Citation

Serge Cassen, Cyrille Chaigneau, Valentin Grimaud, Laurent Lescop, Pierre Pétrequin, et al.. Measuring distance in the monumentalities of the Neolithic in Western France. Johannes Müller; Martin Hinz; Maria Wunderlich. Megaliths – Societies – Landscapes. Early Monumentality and Social Differentiation in Neolithic Europe. Volume 2. Proceedings of the international conference "Megaliths – Societies – Landscapes. Early Monumentality and Social Differentiation in Neolithic Europe" (16th–20th June 2015) in Kiel, Verlag Dr. Rudolf Habelt GmbH, pp.565-582, 2019, Frühe Monumentalität und soziale Differenzierung 18, 978-3-7749-4213-4. ⟨hal-02172195⟩

Share

Metrics

Record views

87