Early pastoral communities in the mountains of Sicily. Prehistoric evidence from Vallone Inferno (Scillato) in the palaeoenvironmental framework of the Madonie mountain range

Vincenza Forgia, Andreu Ollé, Josep Maria Vergès

Risultato della ricerca: Articlepeer review


This paper discusses the Middle Neolithic and the Early Bronze Age phases of the occupation of a rock shelter at Vallone Inferno (Scillato, Palermo) in Sicily. Vallone Inferno is a key site for studying the early establishment and development of pastoralism in the prehistoric mountainous environments of Sicily. Seasonal use of the site as a shelter is documented for the earliest pastoral communities that exploited the Madonie mountain range. The results of the analysis of pottery and lithic assemblages contribute to the definition of two chronocultural frameworks that were linked by the same economic subsistence base. The special role of obsidian emerges, while the mobility patterns of human groups are contextualized by the combination of archaeological and paleoenvironmental data with a focus on the 4.2 ka cal BP aridification climatic event broadly coincident with the final part of the local Copper Age and beginning of the Early Bronze Age. Moreover, since the transition between the Late Copper Age and the Early Bronze Age, mobility of pastoral groups is inferred to be one of the most important factors for the spread of cultural elements on the island.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Numero di pagine15
RivistaJournal of Anthropological Archaeology
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Archaeology
  • History
  • Archaeology

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