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Title: Megalithic hollows: rock-cut tombs between the Tagus and the Guadiana
Authors: Rocha, Leonor
Editors: Laporte, Luc
Scarre, Chris
Keywords: megalithic tombs
rock-cut tombs
corbel vaulted tombs
Issue Date: Aug-2015
Publisher: OXBOW BOOKS
Abstract: Neolithic monuments south of the Tagus, in Portugal, number over 1000. They are usually classified in four key types: standing stones (isolated or in groups); megalithic tombs (dolmens and passage graves); rock-cut tombs; and corbel vaulted tombs. In addition, there has been increasing evidence of an early and incipient monumentality at the late Mesolithic funerary shell mounds of the Tagus and Sado rivers. Some have timber features that may be considered to be monumental, not in terms of size but by being associated with memory. The spatial experiences of these places are transformed by specific kinds of design and tectonics (and we use the term “tectonics” in the architectural sense). Therefore, from an alternative point of view, if we attempt to categorise the monuments in accordance with these different spatial experiences, they can be classified: as open air monuments (standing stones, timber features at shell mounds); closed monuments (shell mound cemeteries, closed megalithic chambers); and open tombs (passage graves and rock-cut tombs). The available data concerning the region south of the Tagus and west of the Guadiana is still hampered by a number of difficulties in obtaining radiocarbon dates. However, it has been possible to show that the different types of monuments were probably sequential, most likely with chronological overlaps between the types: shell mounds (6000–5000 cal BC); then standing stones (5000–4000); then megalithic tombs (4500–3000); then rock-cut tombs (3500–3000); and lastly corbel vaulted tombs (3000–2500). However, this oversimplified scheme is still open to debate, and is obviously in need of refinement.
Type: bookPart
Appears in Collections:HIS - Publicações - Capítulos de Livros
CHAIA - Publicações - Capítulos de Livros

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