The aim of this dissertation is to investigate the subsistence strategies of Late Egyptian prehistoric human groups and the relations between them and their environment through the analysis of fish remains from two different areas: the Fayum Oasis in Lower and Wadi Kubbanya in Upper Egypt. The author redefined the evolution of fishing techniques and methods from the Late Palaeolithic since the last Epipalaeolithic coming to an innovative conclusion which involves paleo-environmental and climatic changes.
The first section of the work focuses on the paleo-climate and geology, in particular on the environmental changes occurred in the two regions in the last 17000 years. In the Fayum Oasis, such changes strongly influenced the water level of the lake and its size as well as the salinity values. In Wadi Kubbaniya, where human occupations were localized close to the wadi edges, in order to avoid Nile flooding by human groups, the water level increased and little basins were filled up. This phenomenon allowed the populations to catch the fishes which took refuge in the basins.
Clariias species were the most copious taxa found in both the Fayum and Wadi Kubbaniya sites. Yet, while Late Palaeolithic sites as Wadi Kubbaniya and Makhadma show the presence of only shallow water species remains (Clariias and Tilapia), Epipalaeolithic sites - as Fayum Oasis, Elkab in Egypt and Aneibis, Abu Darbein and El-Damer in Northern Sudan - show the predominant presence of deep water species remains instead (Lates, Synodontis and Bagrus), associated with the use of different fishing techniques. Therefore, fishing techniques and species caught changed during the Epipalaeolithic phase. This change depended by several different factors, which are explained in the conclusions of the study.
AUTHOR: Marianna Fusco
UNIVERSITY: Università degli Studi di Napoli "'L'Orientale". Department of Asia, Africa and Mediterranean.
DATE OF GRADUATION: 2013