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Durham University

Department of Archaeology


Publication details for Professor Chris Scarre

García Sanjuán, Leo, Scarre, Chris & Wheatley, David W. (2017). The Mega-Site of Valencina de la Concepción (Seville, Spain): Debating Settlement Form, Monumentality and Aggregation in Southern Iberian Copper Age Societies. Journal of World Prehistory 30(3): 239-257.

Author(s) from Durham


Study of the Iberian Copper Age has experienced a remarkable upheaval in the last two decades. The discovery in central and southwestern Iberia of a significant number of ditched enclosures, a site type almost unknown in this region until the mid 1990s, has opened up new lines of research. Particularly interesting is the existence of some exceptionally large sites. Largest of all is Valencina de la Concepción (Seville, Spain), covering an area of 450 ha and featuring several outstanding megalithic monuments, thousands of pits and material assemblages revealing middle and long distance contacts. In this paper we discuss the implications of the Valencina mega-site for the study of settlement variability, monumentality and population aggregation as key phenomena in the rise in social complexity in Copper Age Iberia.