Paleolithic Pendants from the “Epiaurignacian” site at Langmannersdorf in Lower Austria

The Langmannersdorf Epiaurignacian site lies in the Perschling valley, nine km from the Danube, in Lower Austria. First small-scale excavations were undertaken between 1904 and 1920 followed by a systematic archaeological project in 1919-1920 by J. Bayer. The first monograph was published by W. Angeli in 1953 and the material was again described in the Aurignacian- thesis of Joachim Hahn in the 1970. The Langmannersdorf data are part of an Austrian Academy of Science Prehistoric Commission research project “Paleolithic industrial circles before the last ice maximum between 32.000 and 20.000 BC from archeological and paleological Aspects” funded during the last years.

New AMS dating confirmed a conventional C-14 age determined in the 1970ies (AMS: 20.6 k.a BP) and therefore a hunting stay at the LGM. An archaeozoological analysis reaffirmed the mammoth as the main procurement resource, followed by reindeer.

Important archaeological features were allready documented by Bayer and Angeli, including fireplaces, post-holes and a probable storage pit, as well as the typological characteristics of the 3,844 stone artifacts. These artifacts comprise a lot of blanks (flakes> blades> bladelets). Modified artifacts are rare and 107/137 modified blanks are burins, among them 30 busked burins as the only ‘Aurignacian’ element within the ensemble. Hahns monography shows some endscrapers, 3 of them could be described as nosed endscrapers. Other scrapers are short and resemble thumbnail scrapers. The whole ensemble would also fit into a “Middle European Epigravettian” (Kasovian). Anyhow, chronologically and typologically, the Langmannersdorf site still remains isolated in Central Europe.

The 2 platelets that are displayed here are from the Bayer’s excavation and were never published before. They have to be interpreted as ivory pendants without further ornamentation, because both show a damaged eyelet on the apical side. Stylistically there are affinities to some pedants during the middle Europe Gravettian (Pavlov, Gravettian of the Caves in the Swabian Alb).  

Some burins and short scrapers from the Langersmann site (displayed at the Naturhistorisches Nuseum Vienna; Photography from 7/2013)

angmannersdorf aggsbach langmannersdorf aggsbach scraper

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One Response to Paleolithic Pendants from the “Epiaurignacian” site at Langmannersdorf in Lower Austria

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