top of page
Schermata 2022-03-03 alle 14.16_edited.jpg
Les Cottes: Ricerca



The site was excavated by M. Soressi and her team from 2006 until 2018. Several articles report the discoveries made during the excavation and during lab work studying the finds discovered during the excavation. Most of these papers are in English. A book is currently in preparation with the financial and editorial support of the Service Régional de l’Archéologie de Nouvelle-Aquitaine to report the results of the excavation in French.


Les Cottés (Vienne, France) is located on the corridor between the Parisian basin and the Poitou in West-Central France. It is next to the Grand Pressigny area and to the Anglin valley, which are well-known for Paleolithic sites, including the rockart site of Roc-aux-Sorciers in Angle-sur-l’Anglin.

Schermata 2022-03-03 alle 14.00_edited.jpg
les cottes excava.jpg


Les Cottés is one of the rare sites, if not the only site, which contains a sequence of Late Mousterian, Evolved Chatelperronian, Protoaurignacian and Early Aurignacian. The late Mousterian and Chatelperronian were produced by the last Neandertals, wheras Protoaurignacian and Early Aurignacian are attributed to the earliest anatomically modern humans in western Europe.

Les Cottes: Research

List of papers using data and findings from Les Cottés excavation.

  • Rendu, W., Renou, S., Soulier, M. C., Rigaud, S., Roussel, M., & Soressi, M. (2019). Subsistence strategy changes during the Middle to Upper Paleolithic transition reveals specific adaptations of Human Populations to their environment. Scientific reports, 9(1), 1-11.

  • Porter, S. T., Roussel, M., & Soressi, M. (2019). A Comparison of Châtelperronian and Protoaurignacian Core Technology Using Data Derived from 3D Models. Journal of Computer Applications, 2, 15.

  • Jaouen, K., Richards, M., Le Cabec, A., Welker, F., Rendu, W., Hublin, J.-J., Soressi, M., Talamo, S. (2019) Exceptionally high ∂15N values in collagen single amino acids confirm Neandertals as high-trophic level carnivores. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 116(11), 4928-4933.

  • Hajdinjak, M., Fu Q., Hübner A., Petr M., Mafessoni F., Grote S., Skoglund P., Narasimham V., Rougier H., Crevecoeur I., Semal P., Soressi M., Talamo S., Hublin J.-J., Gušić I., Kućan Z., Rudan P., Golovanova L.V., Doronichev V.B., Posth C., Krause J., Korlević P., Nagel S., Nickel B., Slatkin M., Patterson N., Reich D.,

  • Prüfer K., Meyer M., Pääbo S., Kelso J. (2018) Reconstructing the genetic history of late Neanderthals. Nature, n° 555, p. 652-656.

  • Slon, V., Hopfe, C., Weiß, C. L., Mafessoni, F., de la Rasilla, M., Lalueza-Fox, C., Rosas, A., Soressi, M., Knul, M. V., Miller, R., Stewart, J. R., Derevianko, A. P., Jacobs, Z., Li, B., Roberts, R., G., Shunkov, M. V., de Lumley, H., Perrenoud, C., Gušić, I., Kućan, Ž., Rudan, P., Ayinuer-Petri, A., Essel, E., Nagel, S., Nickel, B., Schmidt, A., Prüfer, K., Kelso, J., Burbano, H. A., Pääbo, S., & Meyer, M. (2017). Neandertal and Denisovan DNA from Pleistocene sediments. Science, 356(6338),

  • Falcucci, A., Peresani, M., Roussel, M., Normand, Ch. & Soressi, M. 2016 What’s the point? Retouched bladelet variability in the Protoaurignacian. Results from Fumane, Isturitz, and Les Cottés. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences, 1-16.

  • Porter, S. T., Roussel, M., & Soressi, M. 2016 A simple photogrammetry rig for the reliable creation of 3D artifact models in the field: lithic examples form the Early Upper Palaeolithic Sequence of Les Cottés (France). Advances in Archaeological Practice, 4(1): 71-86. 3D models of artefacts accompanying this article are available on: http://dx.doi. org/10.13020/D6201D

  • Welker, F., Soressi, M., Rendu, W., Hublin, J. J., & Collins, M. 2015 Using ZooMS to identify fragmentary bone from the Late Middle/Early Upper Palaeolithic sequence of Les Cottés, France. Journal of Archaeological Science, 54: 279-286

  • Jacobs, Z., Li, B., Jankowski, N., & Soressi, M. 2015 Testing of a single grain OSL chronology across the Middle to Upper Palaeolithic transition at Les Cottés (France). Journal of Archaeological Science, 54, 110-122.

  • Roussel M. & Soressi M. 2014, Le Châtelperronien. In: Otte M. (Ed.) Néandertal / Cro Magnon. La Rencontre. Editions Errance, p. 31-59

  • Rigaud S., Roussel M., Rendu W., Primault J., Renou S., Hublin J.-J. & Soressi M. 2014 Les pratiques ornementales à l’Aurignacien ancien dans le Centre-Ouest de la France : l’apport des fouilles récentes aux Cottés(Vienne). Bulletin de la Société préhistorique française, 111 (1): 21-40

  • Soressi, M., & Roussel, M. 2014 European Middle to Upper Paleolithic Transitional Industries: Châtelperronian. In : Encyclopedia of Global Archaeology (pp. 2679-2693). Springer New York.

  • Hollund, H. I., Ariese, F., Fernandes, R., Jans, M. M. E., & Kars, H. 2013 Testing an alternative high-throughput tool for investigating bone diagenesis: FTIR in attenuated total reflection (ATR) mode. Archaeometry, 55(3): 507-532

  • Frouin F., Soressi M.A., Rendu W., Macchiarelli R., El Albani A. & Meunier A. 2013 Clay minerals of late Pleistocene sites (Jonzac and Les Cottes, SW France): Applications of X-ray diffraction analyses to local paleoclimatic and paleoenvironmental reconstructions, Quaternary International, 2013, vol.302 : 184-198

  • Roussel & Soressi M. 2013 Une nouvelle séquence du Paléolithique supérieur ancien aux marges sud-ouest du Bassin parisien: Les Cottés dans la Vienne in P. Bodu et al. (dir.), Le Paléolithique supérieur ancien de l’Europe du Nord-ouest. Réflexions et synthèses à partir d’un projet collectif de recherche sur le centre et le sud du Bassin parisien, journées SPF, Sens, 15-18 avril 2009, Mémoire 56, Société préhistorique française: 283-298

  • Talamo, S., Soressi, M., Roussel, M., Richards, M. and J.-J. Hublin 2012 A Radiocarbon chronology for the complete Middle to Upper Palaeolithic transitional sequence of Les Cottés (France). Journal of Archaeological Science. 39(1):175-183.

  • van Doorn N. L., J. Wilson, H. Hollund, M. Soressi, M. J. Collins 2012 Sitespecific deamidation of glutamine: a new marker of bone collagen deterioration. Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry, vol. 26(19) : 2319-2327.

  • Soressi, M., Tavormina, C. 2011 L’intérêt du tri du refus de tamis de maille 5 mm et 2 mm dans l’analyse d’assemblages lithiques du Protoaurignacien et de l’Aurignacien ancien. Bulletin de liaison et d’information - Association des Archéologues de Poitou-Charentes, t. 40, p. 9-16.

  • Soressi, M., Roussel, M., Rendu, W., Primault, J., Rigaud, S., Texier, J.P., Richter, D., Talamo, S., Ploquin, F., Larmignat, B., Tavormina, C., Hublin, J.J., – Les Cottés (Vienne). 2010 Nouveaux travaux sur l’un des gisements de référence pour la transition Paléolithique moyen/supérieur. In: Buisson-Cattil, J., Primault, J. (Eds.): Préhistoire entre Vienne et Charente. Hommes et sociétés du Paléolithique. 25 ans d’archéologie préhistorique en Poitou-Charentes. Association des Publications Chauvinoises, Chauvigny, p. 221-234

  • Soressi, M., Goval, E., Larmignat, B., Roussel, M. 2009 Cartographie et modèles numériquesde terrain du gisement de la transition Paléolithique moyen/ supérieur des Cottés (Saint- Pierre-de-Maillé, Vienne), Bulletin de liaison et d’information - Association des Archéologues de Poitou- Charentes, t. 38, p. 11-20.

Les Cottes: Text
bottom of page