image/svg+xml113 VI/1/2015 INTERDISCIPLINARIA ARCHAEOLOGICA NATURAL SCIENCES IN ARCHAEOLOGY homepage: A look at the region PAPAVER. Centre for Human and Plant Studies of Postglacial Europe and Northern Africa, 2013–2015 Jaromír Beneš a* , Adéla Pokorná a , Alexandra Bernardová a , Michaela Divišová a , Petra Houfková a , Ondřej Chvojka b , Kateřina Kodýdková a , Veronika Komárková a , Klára Paclíková a , Karel Prach c , Michal Preusz d , Kamila Lencová a , Jan Novák a , Tereza Šálková a a University of South Bohemia, Faculty of Science, Laboratory of Archaeobotany and Palaeoecology, Na Zlaté stoce 3, 370 05 České Budějovice, Czech Republic b University of South Bohemia, Faculty of Philosophy, Institute of Archaeology, Branišovská 31a, 370 05 České Budějovice, Czech Republic c Department of Botany, Faculty of Science, University of South Bohemia, Na Zlaté stoce 1, 370 05 České Budějovice d University of West Bohemia, Faculty of Arts, Chair of Archaeology, Sedláčkova 15, 306 14 Plzeň, Czech Republic 1. Introduction In the beginning of 2013, the Ministry of Education and the European Social Fund of the Czech Republic granted the Laboratory of Archaeobotany and Palaeoecology (LAPE) fnancial support to create a new body called Papaver, Centre for human and plant studies in Europe and Northern Africa in the postglacial period . The Papaver Centre is not regarded as a regular organizational unit, but as temporally-limited grouping of researchers, teachers and students from LAPE and the Department of Botany of the Faculty of Science and the Institute of Archaeology, Faculty of Philosophy from the University of South Bohemia in České Budějovice.The aim of the Papaver Centre project has been to develop ties within an interdisciplinary team, consisting of paleoecologists, archaeologists, and vegetation ecologists, in order to create an effective space for the study of climatic, cultural, as well as landscape, changes in vegetation and crops along a gradient from northern Africa, across central Europe, and up to the coldest areas of the north. The purpose of the project has been to connect and coordinate key experts of international repute and thus provide the South Bohemian team the dynamics and impulses for development of top quality research by means of internships, lectures, workshops, conferences, as well as by everyday communication tools. The project has created a suitable environment for young researchers and PhD students by including them in clearly-defned structures of ongoing research on attractive topics. Team activity has been based on three panels in the felds of environmental archaeology, paleoecology, and vegetation ecology. The aims of such activity have been to coordinate with each other and create a team producing synergistic outcomes. A further aim of Volume VI ● Issue 1/2015 ● Pages 113–123 *Corresponding author. E-mail: ARTICLE INFO Article history: Received: 28 th July 2015Accepted: 2 nd September 2015 Keywords: archaeobotanypalaeoecologyarchaeologySouth BohemiaEuropeAfricaeducation ABSTRACT Papaver Centre was constituted in 2013 at the University of South Bohemia in České Budějovice, Czech Republic. The name of centre represents common and interesting genus of plants which is distributed from Northern Africa across Europe to the polar latitudes. The aim of the Papaver Centre is to develop ties within the interdisciplinary team consisting of paleoecologists, archaeologists, and vegetation ecologists in order to create an effective space for the study of climatic, cultural as well as landscape changes. This paper describes recent educational and scientifc activities of the centre. One of main results is realization series of international lectures of top scientists, which substantially improved capabilities of members in the Laboratory of Archaeobotany and Palaeoecology.
image/svg+xmlIANSA 2015 ● VI/1 ● 113–123Jaromír Beneš, Adéla Pokorná, Alexandra Bernardová, Michaela Divišová, Petra Houfková, Ondřej Chvojka, Kateřina Kodýdková, Veronika Komárková, Klára Paclíková, Karel Prach, Michal Preusz, Kamila Lencová, Jan Novák, Tereza Šálková: PAPAVER. Centre for Human and Plant Studies of Postglacial Europe and Northern Africa, 2013–2015 114 the project has been to stabilize and extend the operational range of the research group, which connects archaeological directions in landscape development research with the latest trends in botany. The research centre bears the name of the genus of poppies (Papaver), the representatives of which are distributed from the coldest areas on Svalbard to the warmest of northern Africa, and thus represents the region targeted by the project’s research interests. 2. Papaver Centre and research development in 2013–2015 In accord with the project’s idea to create conditions for top science, the members of the Papaver team actively contributed to the scientifc goals of their different projects. The synergy between several active research grants and the Papaver project was extraordinarily useful. The support has enabled interdisciplinary space to be created for several specifc palaeoecological, archaeobotanical and botanical research tasks. The Papaver project has been led by the head of the centre, archaeologist and archaeobotanist Jaromír Beneš, and the scientifc supervisor for the whole team, botanist and vegetation ecologist Karel Prach. The Papaver team itself has been organized into three thematic panels. The paleoecological group, led by J. Novák, has integrated and organized activities connected with a multi-proxy approach focused on the reconstruction of the Holocene vegetation changes in terms of vegetation, climate, and human impact upon environmental changes throughout Europe (Bešta et al. 2015). Up to now the scholars involved in the Papaver project have contributed into many multi-proxy palaeoecological and archaeobotanical studies in central Europe (Hlásek et al. 2014; Hlásek et al. 2015; Chvojka et al. 2014; Pokorná et al. 2014). The attention of the project has also been focused on the anthracological research at many important archaeological sites (Novák 2014a; Novák 2014b). Anthracology is an effective method for the study of macrovegetation in the landscape (trees and shrubs). Other anthracological studies highlight the importance of pedoanthracological research for the reconstruction of woodland history; for example, in the sandstone area of North Bohemia (Prostředník et al. 2014).The environmental archaeology group has been led by J. Beneš. This panel has focused on research into the Mesolithic/Neolithic transition in central Europe; however, the younger post Neolithic periods of human impact on nature in prehistoric Bohemia and Moravia have not been omitted. The aim of the Papaver team has also been to investigate Mesolithic hunter-gatherers through a broad interdisciplinary approach. The members have participated in a range of archaeological excavations, occuring in certain regions of the Czech Republic, namely the Třeboň basin in south Bohemia, and the north Bohemian pseudokarst area of Bohemian Paradise (Šída et al. 2014; Divišová, Šída 2015). Apart from the excavations themselves and artefact analyses, a number of palaeoecological and archaeobotanical analyses have formed integral components of the research. A variety of questions regarding former human behaviour, environment, plant use, human impact on the landscape, etc. , are being investigated using the tools of environmental archaeology, such as pollen analysis or analysis of plant macroremains. In addition, the issue of the last hunter-gatherers in the region and their transition to farming, which is of special importance, has been addressed by examining specifc sites together with artefactual and ecofactual material recovered from sediments dated from the Mesolithic onwards.A second connection between environmental archaeology and archaeobotany has been created in the case of the Bronze Age period and Early Iron Age period in south Bohemia. The aim of our research has been the notifcation of current macro-remains analysis of the prehistory cultural sediments in the region of South Bohemia. The analysed assemblage consists of a cluster of sites dated in a time span from the Late Neolithic to the Early Iron Age period. The samples have been obtained during the course of salvage, as well as scholarly, excavations between the years 2005 and 2015 (Šálková et al. 2014). In our research, macro-remains analysis represents another source of interpretation of archaeological features, inflls, and cultural layers, and makes possible the reconstruction of the palaeoeconomy of settlement areas ( e.g. housing, economy, structure of utility plants and weeds, burial rites), as well as the natural environment in the background of human sites ( e.g. Šálková et al. 2015; Hlásek et al. 2014; Chvojka et al. 2014; Hlásek et al. 2015; Fröhlich et al. 2014).The third direction of research in the environmental archaeology panel has been the study of the relationship of plants and humans in the medieval period and Early Modern Age in historical Czech lands. The archaeobotanical attractiveness of such research in these relatively young periods is that it increases a direct and unmistakable link to the present we live in now. This is especially obvious in the comparative research into the development and changes in individual types of cereals used during the malting process and subsequent brewing between the 13 th and 18 th centuries. As a result, we have managed to penetrate specifc production processes, and the qualitative and quantitative aspects of brewing and malting before the advent of modern technology (Kočár et al. 2015).Medieval and Early Modern agriculture as a cardinal factor in the transformation of landscape and human-induced changes in vegetation has been under the focus of Papaver Centre members. In the case of terraced felds in Malonín (South Bohemia), we have established a new methodology in how to date such changes (Houfková et al. 2015). Thanks to another research grant, we have performed archaeological excavations of the long-stripped felds in the abandoned village Malonín. Our approach has consisted of a combination of information from different sources such as historical documents and maps, chronologies based on the dating of archaeological artefacts, 14 C data, and the assignment of 210 Pb, 137 Cs concentrations. Our results have proved that the current pattern of feld margins in the former village of Malonín is High Medieval in origin. As
image/svg+xmlIANSA 2015 ● VI/1 ● 113–123Jaromír Beneš, Adéla Pokorná, Alexandra Bernardová, Michaela Divišová, Petra Houfková, Ondřej Chvojka, Kateřina Kodýdková, Veronika Komárková, Klára Paclíková, Karel Prach, Michal Preusz, Kamila Lencová, Jan Novák, Tereza Šálková: PAPAVER. Centre for Human and Plant Studies of Postglacial Europe and Northern Africa, 2013–2015 115 recent landscape patterns in many villages in marginal areas of central Europe can be based on man-made structures originating in the Medieval Period, we conclude that the memory of the medieval landscape remains very strong. Our results have provided arguments for the preservation of such defned landscape units; this could lead to a conservation of both long-term historical pattern and recent biodiversity bound to its exact combination of landscape elements.The issue of the Medieval and the Early Modern economy and ecology in historical towns has also been very attractive. Members of the Papaver Centre have studied two sites: Písek-Bakaláře (the Medieval secondarily flled-in well; Šálková et al. 2015) and České Budějovice, Krajinská street 7 (the Medieval cesspit; Čapek et al. 2015). In those times wells were very often secondarily used as cesspits: because of water contamination or changes in water regimes. Various aspects of human life and behaviour have been refected in the waste disposal and storage inside “Well 1” in Písek-Bakaláře. It has been possible to detect imported material of different origins and to reconstruct the environment of the town’s background (meadows, felds, gardens, forests), as well as animal rearing ( cattle, sheep, pig, horse, dog, cat), crops grown (cereals and fruits), and waste management practices (Šálková et al. 2015). The faecal infll of the cesspit in České Budějovice, Krajinská 7 was characterised by the macroremains of utility plants which refected the food strategy of medieval burghers (Čapek et al. 2015). Since the Early Modern world was not only about production but also about consumption, a pilot study on the everyday life of selected “consumers” in the south Bohemian town of Czech Krumlov (UNESCO) has been created with an emphasis on the reconstruction of the eating habits of townspeople during the 17 th century (Preusz et al. 2014), using the testimony of archival sources, archaeology, archaeobotany and archaeozoology. Our investigation has revealed that changes in the traditional stereotypical diet and social customs have crystallized over the centuries, and has opened up entirely new perspectives in the study of diversity in the eating habits of people in the Medieval and Early Modern period. In this respect, the Papaver Centre has carved out a suitable space to bring greater synergy between history, archaeology and the natural sciences.A crucial topic of the Papaver Centre has been to create an organizational milieu for the study of north African and Mediterranean crops and other materials of plant origin, and their transmission to central Europe from the end of the last glacial to the Early Modern period. Archaeobotanical investigation in NE Africa already has a tradition in LAPE. We have closely cooperated with a multidisciplinary archaeological team led by the Czech Institute of Egyptology, Faculty of Philosophy and Arts, Charles University in Prague. Several members of our laboratory have already taken part in expeditions to Egypt since 2005, and in Sudan since 2011. Among localities of our own interest we can mention Abusir and the oasis of Bahariya in the Western Desert (Egypt), and the Sabaloka Mountains in Sudan. The most important methods in African archaeobotany have been the analysis of plant seeds/fruits by A. Pokorná and the analysis of wood and charcoal by J. Beneš and J. Novák (Krejčí et al. 2014).A survey of recent vegetation in the archaeological sites of Lazio has been held during the two vegetation seasons of 2014 and 2015. In consultation with Italian specialists, a list of plant species (incl. photo-documentation) related to the archaeological area of Santa Severa and Santa Marinella has been created. One of the frst applications of this list has been for a short botanical guide for students that will be used for education purposes during the SIS-School of interdisciplinary studies in September 2015. Members of the Papaver team have studied the local vegetation in Lazio as a witness to its ancient history. The analysis of its present vegetation has enabled tentative extrapolations as to how the vegetation could have looked in Roman times (Figure 6). Recently, new methods have been introduced in cooperation with our laboratory: namely the analyses of starch and plant phytoliths. Our members have taken part in feld expeditions to Africa on a regular basis. Field work has comprised the sampling of archaeological contexts as well as the creation of reference collections, and ecological studies of recent vegetation. We have established cooperation with a local botanist in Sudan to enable (among other things) the more effective application of knowledge about modern plant behaviour when interpreting past environments. The vegetation ecology panel, led by Karel Prach, has mostly focused on the search for current relations between a diversity of the fora and vegetation in a wider geographical context. The panel leader K. Prach has long focused on vegetation dynamics, succession processes, restoration ecology, and ecosystem restoration. Special attention will be paid to invasive plants resulting from contemporary ecological and social changes. One of the main efforts in this sense is the preparation of a paper (Kočár et al. in prep.), concerning a checklist of wild-growing herbaceous plants in the prehistory of the Czech Republic. This list of wild plants is based exclusively on archaeobotanical evidence and will be available for evaluation by botanists for the frst time. The Papaver project has also supported the study of vegetation in abandoned felds as specifc biotopes under long term human impact (Prach et al. 2014).The arctic ecology of plants team has focused on several topics – vegetation dynamics, pollen deposition and the relationship between species and geomorphology. The frst topic of focus has been the palaeoecological analyses of soil and lake cores retrieved in the feld. Pollen deposition has been monitored through a system of pollen traps as part of a pollen monitoring program that is widely used within Europe ( ). Pollen traps have been newly installed in the central part of Svalbard along with vegetation mapping around the traps. In 2014 vegetation mapping was also fnished in Abisko, Sweden, where traps have already been in operation. The relationship of vegetation and geomorphology has been studied according to species traits (species composition, cover, biomass) and the characteristics of the terrain (morphology, slope, aspect, fow accumulation) as retrieved by detailed LIDAR scanning.
image/svg+xmlIANSA 2015 ● VI/1 ● 113–123Jaromír Beneš, Adéla Pokorná, Alexandra Bernardová, Michaela Divišová, Petra Houfková, Ondřej Chvojka, Kateřina Kodýdková, Veronika Komárková, Klára Paclíková, Karel Prach, Michal Preusz, Kamila Lencová, Jan Novák, Tereza Šálková: PAPAVER. Centre for Human and Plant Studies of Postglacial Europe and Northern Africa, 2013–2015 116 3. Papaver Centre education and international team building programme A core part of the Papaver Centre project has been the scientifc educational program for Czech members of the Papaver team, which has consisted of meetings, feld workshops, summer schools and teaching weeks held by specialists from Denmark, Germany, Italy, Japan, Sweden and United Kingdom. Archaeobotanists and paleoecologists from top European institutions have taken part for the frst time as a team in the Introductory Papaver meeting 2013 (Figures 1 and 2). The education program terminated the international Conference of Environmental Archaeology in February 2015 in České Budějovice. 3.1. Field workshops and summer schools Field workshops and summer schools have been organized in order to improve the coordination and synergy between archaeology, archaeobotany and palaeoecology. Three archaeological feld projects were chosen as subjects for training and archaeobotanical sampling activity. 3.1.1 Schwarzenberg Lake Mesolithic Occupation feld workshops Two feld workshops were led by Petr Šída in the area of the former Schwarzenberg Lake in South Bohemia in 2013 and 2014. These intensive, on-site seminars were focused primarily on exploring Mesolithic communities through excavation. Modern approaches and feld techniques in hunter-gatherer feld research were presented and discussed. In addition, an experimental archaeology programme aimed at the reconstruction of pre-Neolithic cooking methods was conducted (Figure 3). 3.1.2 Tuchlovice Iron Age Wetland Site feld workshops In seasons 2013 and 2014, in collaboration with the Department of Prehistory and Classical Antiquity of the National Museum Prague, two feld workshops were