Punk’s not dead. Fungi for tinder at the Neolithic site of La Draga (NE Iberia)

Marian Berihuete-Azorín, Josep Girbal, Raquel Piqué, Antoni Palomo, Xavier Terradas

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3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

© 2018 Berihuete-Azorín et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. This paper presents the study of the fungi remains preserved in the waterlogged deposits of the Neolithic site of La Draga. These resources had the potential of being used as food and medicine, but also as tinder. Fire was without a doubt one of the most important resources for past people. It was used for lighting, heating, processing food and other materials, cooking and protection, and also possessed social and ritual significance. Hearths are one of the most common features at archaeological sites, but very often little attention is paid to the question of how these fires were lit, and they are seldom reflected in the archaeological record. In order to produce fire by percussion, an intermediate material is required between the sparks and the fuel. Fruiting bodies of fungi are a potential form of tinder, but are less inclined to be well-preserved than other materials. This paper presents the fungal fruiting bodies found at the Neolithic site of La Draga and discusses the meaning of their presence within the archaeological context of the site and European Prehistory.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0195846
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume13
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2018

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