Grotte de Montgaudier

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Site type:
45.66, 0.44
Homo neanderthalensis

The Grotte de Montgaudier is located in the department of Charente, in the town of Montbron. It was occupied from the Mousterian (Middle Paleolithic) to the Magdalenian (Upper Paleolithic) and yielded Neanderthal, Homo sapiens, and ancient fauna bones, a rich lithic industry, a bone industry as well as elements of parietal art and portable art.

The cave was occupied from the Mousterian to the Magdalenian. In the upper Solutrean, men would have simply passed through or occupied the Abri Paignon.

In 1974 was discovered part of the jaw of a young Neanderthal aged 12 to 14 and a half who would have lived at the end of the Riss glaciation (penultimate glaciation). It is possible that its mandible fell from the Lartet shelter located above and then it would have lived in the Mousterian.

In 1988, Louis Duport discovered in locus 12 a deciduous molar without wear, therefore belonging to an 8-year-old child (more or less 2 years). The occlusal surface is 5 cusps, which is still common today; but the crown is very large, which would date it to the Middle Magdalenian.

In 1968, two Homo sapiens skulls, that of a very well preserved young adult and that of a child aged 8 to 12, were found in the Abri Gaudry and dated Magdalenian V or VI. Another skull fragment was found in the Abri Paignon, in the Magdalenian level.