Sunday, December 16, 2012

0136 – Enclosures as funerary chambers ?

That seems to be the case of the inside small ditched enclosure of Bela Vista 5. The small enclosure has inside just one pit used to bury a woman, together with three pots, a pricker and a “Palmela” arrow head (so much for the “male worrier” theory for “Ferradeira horizon” graves). It is dated from the last quarter of the third millennium BC, contemporaneous of the process of the filling of the ditch.

It is interesting to notice that the pit grave is not at the centre of this small enclosure, just with 6/7 m diameter, but in a side, like it frequently happens in megalithic chambers. In fact, the all context, announcing a new world with new perspectives regarding individuality, steel suggests a memory of Neolithic times, inclusive with evidences of body manipulation after the first deposition. The inner enclosure seems to have been built to receive this grave, and the outside ditch reveals practices that can only be understood in the context of a highly ceremonial activity (see previous post on Bela Vista 5).

All of this for one woman? If so, she was an important one, no doubt.

PS – The data from this sites and reflexions on the problems that it raises will be presented next February, in ERA annual meeting. Monographic publication will follow.

No comments:

Post a Comment