A new archaeological find in France, researchers have unearthed a hundred grain storage silos , dating from the Gauls, on the plateau of the site Corent (Puy-de-Dôme), are we learned Thursday, August 13 from liable excavations. “This is the largest set ever found in France and a major discovery for (…) understanding of the mode of functioning of the economy Gallic , which is not at all as basic might be expected there are a hundred years, “he told AFP Matthieu Poux, professor of archeology at the University of Lyon-2 and head of excavations, confirming a report in newspaper Le Monde .
“This is an economy that emerges from the surplus, which is stored and we exchange. There is a storage circuit and redistribution of resources and this kind of discovery allows us to to giant leaps in understanding these mechanisms “, he added.
A conservation system under vacuum
These silos 120, dating from the Iron Age (800 to 50 years before Christ), whose total number is estimated at more than a thousand, were discovered early August digging trenches in an ancient lake , 500 meters above sea level, to restore the sedimentary history, explained the researcher. For the archaeologist, the principle of these silos is “ingenious”: “ dug in clay soil, practically impermeable to water and air , pits were filled to wheat board , barley or rye, then hermetically sealed. ” Each could hold “between a quintal and a ton of grain”, bearing the site’s capacity “several hundred tons”.
This system of “vacuum pack” allowed for storing grain “several months or even years” . “They may have been stored there to support a seat or near a large market place or it was an exceptional surplus,” said Matthieu Poux. The walls of the silos were covered with a carbon layer showing that these plants were sterilized fire , “to be used multiple times.” The silos “were then filled with earth, because they no longer served,” emphasized the researcher.
“We have the feeling that everything was laid out in a short time because the silos are regularly spaced and it looks like they were all filled at the same time,” he noted. Of coal samples were collected at the bottom of the silo to allow them time to carbon dating 14.