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Contribution isotopique (δ13C, δ15N, δ18O, 87Sr/86Sr) à la connaissance de la mobilité, des pratiques pastorales et des rites dans les sociétés actuelles et anciennes de Mongolie.

Abstract : Pastoral societies leave discrete marks in the archaeological record. As a result, the fine description and characterisation of past interactions between human-animal-environment within these societies is difficult. The isotopic analysis of the biological tissues of herd animals is a key entry point for understanding these interactions because it provides information on their feeding history, mobility and environment. However, this approach requires the establishment of robust reference sets in order to correctly interpret the results obtained on the archaeological material. The aim of this work was to validate isotope markers (C, N, O, Sr) of pastoral mobility and of the date of death of livestock. To this end, we equipped modern livestock (horse, sheep, goat) belonging to nomadic herders in the Mongolian Altai with GPS collars and analysed the isotopic composition of their biological tissues (hair, teeth) using sequential sampling. Our results show that frequent animal movements complicate the interpretation of isotope variations recorded by horse hair. On the other hand, the average δ13C value of hair and enamel and the anticovariation between δ13C and δ18O values measured in enamel can be used to infer the altitudinal mobility of the animals and the occupancy rate of alpine pastures. Strontium isotope mapping of the study area allowed us to discuss the use of Sr isotope variations in enamel to trace the geographical origin and movements of animals. Finally, modelling of the oxygen isotope time series in tooth enamel gives access to the date of death of caprines with an accuracy of a month. The isotopic analysis of the archaeological horses found in ritual and funerary contexts of the study area suggests a local origin together with the use of high altitude pastures as early as the Bronze Age. It also reveals the existence of a subsistence calendar favouring the winter slaughter of these horses.
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Submitted on : Wednesday, October 7, 2020 - 9:44:01 AM
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Nicolas Lazzerini. Contribution isotopique (δ13C, δ15N, δ18O, 87Sr/86Sr) à la connaissance de la mobilité, des pratiques pastorales et des rites dans les sociétés actuelles et anciennes de Mongolie.. Géochimie. Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle, 2020. Français. ⟨tel-02959745⟩

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