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Welcome to African Archaeology!

The Journal of African Archaeology is an international peer-reviewed periodical appearing half-yearly since 2003. It publishes original papers addressing recent research and developments in African archaeology and related disciplines. The journal's main purpose is to provide scholars and students with a new pan-African forum for discussing relevant topics on the cultural dynamics of past African societies.

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Vol. 5 (1) 2007

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R. Vernet, M. Ott, L. Tarrou, A. Gallin & J. Georis-Creuseveau

Fouille de la butte de FA 10 (Banc d'Arguin) et son apport à la connaissance de la culture épipaléolithique de Foum Arguin, nord-ouest du Sahara

Journal of African Archaeology, Vol. 5 (1), 2007, pages 17-45, DOI 10.3213/1612-1651-10084

Résumé
La culture épipaléolithique de Foum Arguin s'étend de l'oued Draa, dans le sud marocain, au Banc d'Arguin, et de l'Atlantique aux plaines du nord-ouest saharien, en Mauritanie. Elle est mal délimitée chronologiquement, entre le VIIIe et le VIIe millénaire B.P. et précède de peu le Néolithique qui lui succède, après 5500 B.P., sur la quasi-totalité des nombreux habitats de la région.Plusieurs sites du Banc d'Arguin, moins pillés que la plupart des autres, ont permis de définir l'industrie li-thique de cette culture et de la comparer avec des en-sembles proches, en particulier au sud du Maroc. Cette industrie, très variée, est originale et très distincte des autres traditions connues pour l'époque — par exemple l'Ibéromaurusien et le Capsien. La place des hommes de Foum Arguin dans les cultures sahariennes du début de l'Holocène est donc un thème essentiel. Il sera en parti-culier nécessaire de rechercher les rapprochements pos-sibles avec le Sahara central et oriental, où des cultures épipaléolithiques ou pré-néolithiques sont connues, mais mal cernées et mal datées, comme le montre la confusion entourant la notion de «pointe d'Ounan».

Abstract
The epipaleolithic culture of Foum Arguin stretched from the Oued Draa, in southern Morocco, to the Banc d'Arguin and from the Atlantic shore to the lowlands of northwestern Sahara in Mauritania. Its chronology is vague, located between the eighth and the seventh mil-lenniums BP. It preceded a little the Neolithic, which followed it after 5500 BP on almost all the numerous habitats of this region.Thanks to several sites of the Banc d'Arguin, less plundered than most others, we have been able to define the lithic industry of this culture and to compare it with similar groups, notably those located in southern Morocco. This industry, very varied, is unique and very distinct from other known traditions of that time  — for instance the Iberomaurusian and the Caspian. Thus the place of the populations of Foum Arguin in the Saharian cultures of the early Holocene is an essential topic. In particular it is necessary to investigate the possible similarities with central and eastern Sahara, where epipaleolithic or pre-neolithic cultures are known — yet badly understood and dated as shown by the confusion surrounding the notion of "Ounan point".




Keywords: Epipalaeolithic, epipaléolithique, Foum Arguin, Maroc, Mauritania, Mauritanie, Morocco, Ouest Sahara, western Sahara


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