Activity area analysis of a Roman period semi-subterranean building by means of integrated archaeobotanical and geoarchaeological data
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- Pető, Á., Kenéz, Á., Prunner, A.C. et al. Veget Hist Archaeobot (2015) 24: 101. doi:10.1007/s00334-014-0491-x
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Everyday life in past human societies and the use of specific activity areas within settlements can be explored through the study of the remains of material culture as well as through the application of soil and plant remains analyses. This paper presents the results of complex archaeobotanical and geoarchaeological analyses conducted on 33 samples from a Roman period (1st century ad) semi-subterranean building excavated at the site of Győr-Ménfőcsanak, western Hungary. The aim of this methodological experiment was to try to identify the inner space use of the building with the help of macro- and micro-archaeobotanical and geoarchaeological data. Samples from cultural sediment layers were collected in accordance with a total horizontal sampling strategy using a grid of 50 × 50 cm quadrats. The identified micro- and macrofossils found in the samples from the activity layer imply that a large amount of plant material connected to cereals (stem, leaf, glume, spike fragment, cereal grain fragment, etc.) was either processed or deposited inside the building. The overall interpretation of the distribution patterns projected on the inner space and the spatial evaluation of the data have enabled us to put forward hypotheses regarding the use of the building. Significant differences were detected within the interior space of the feature, which reflect a well-defined selectivity in internal space usage and distinction in activity areas.