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Neolithic cave burialsAgency, structure and environment$
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Rick Peterson

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781526118868

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9781526118868.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM MANCHESTER SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.manchester.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Manchester University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSO for personal use.date: 17 September 2021

In praise of limestone

In praise of limestone

(p.11) 2 In praise of limestone
Neolithic cave burials

Rick Peterson

Manchester University Press

In this chapter it is suggested that limestone landscapes can be seen as a connecting theme in parts of the European Neolithic. The evidence for cave burial at the beginning of the Neolithic is reviewed. Cave burial was relatively late in the local sequence in Greece and the Balkans. By contrast, in Italy, southern France and Spain single grave cave burial occurs from the beginning of the period. In these regions there is also a later Neolithic collective burial practice in caves. There is a large concentration of Late Neolithic collective burials in Belgium. Therefore, Early Neolithic cave burial was primarily a western Mediterranean phenomenon. Later Neolithic cave burial throughout Europe may have been connected with providing a fixed point in a seasonal round for mobile populations. There was an apparent upsurge in cave burial throughout the limestone regions of Europe around 4000 BC.

Keywords:   Caves, Neolithic Burial, European Neolithic, Funerary Archaeology

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