Palaeoenvironmental investigations of a Mesolithic–Neolithic sedimentary sequence from Queen’s Sedgemoor, Somerset

Hill, T, Whittaker, J, Brunning, R, Law, M, Bell, M, Bronk Ramsey, C, Dunbar, E, Marshall, P and Reimer, P (2017) 'Palaeoenvironmental investigations of a Mesolithic–Neolithic sedimentary sequence from Queen’s Sedgemoor, Somerset.' In: Williams, M, Hill, T, Boomer, I and Wikinson, I.P, eds. The archaeological and forensic applications of microfossils: a deeper understanding of human history. The Geological Society, Bath. ISBN 9781786203052

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Abstract

A sediment core extracted from Queen’s Sedgemoor, Somerset, southwest England, has undergone high resolution radiocarbon dating, with subsequent directed palynological, diatom, calcareous microfossil and mollusca analyses focussing on the sedimentary sequence associated with the late Mesolithic and early Neolithic periods. The microfossil and macrofossil evidence supports stratigraphic evidence for hydroseral succession and the subsequent development of a raised bog setting. Such palaeoenvironmental investigations provided evidence of the changing character of the wetlands proximal to three known Mesolithic sites, each situated on sandy sediments of the Burtle Formation of Late Pleistocene date, at Greylake, Chedzoy and Shapwick. Whilst very low pollen counts limited the interpretive potential of deposits associated with the Mesolithic-Neolithic transition, the multiproxy micropalaeontological study has revealed a clear picture of landscape change for much of the sedimentary archive and has identified a new freshwater body within the Somerset Levels in an area of known human activity from the late Mesolithic onwards.

Item Type: Book Chapter or Section
Note:

A special publication of The Micropalaeontological Society.

Keywords: pollen, diatoms, foraminifera, ostracoda, radiocarbon, Mesolithic, Neolithic, Somerset
Subjects: C Auxiliary Sciences of History > CC Archaeology
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GB Physical geography
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Divisions: College of Liberal Arts
Date Deposited: 06 Mar 2017 14:56
Last Modified: 08 Dec 2017 15:14
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