Descriptions of Perdigoes remind me in some ways of the "The Alamo". Of course I being a bit sensationalistic, but if it was in the earliest time a religious place and then later a defensive place and still later a settlement with goats and cattle, then maybe it is in some way comparable.
I'm still reading some of the materials from Valera's blog here, but some of the large enclosures sound to me like religious centers modified into forts with man-made defilade which continually expanded to its end. Their layout suggests defensive tactics that make use of the limited terrain or are in strategic locations.
Perdigoes believably begins a celestial religious site in the Late Neolithic. Around 2900 B.C., the site is potentially revitalized, perhaps growing beyond its original purpose and incorporating an aqueduct, if I am reading correctly.
Quite a few burials are recorded here so far. They seem to be part of distinct social categories, but appear to have occurred within the same time frame according to the paper. The disparity in the respect for the dead is an interesting question.
In the early chalcolithic, human remains appear to be deposited outside of the perimeter. This would seem to suggest that the interior was for a while occupied, such as a fort. But they are later enveloped...
"If, according to our present data, the funerary contexts seem to be near but outside the enclosures during the 4th and early 3rd millennium, from middle of the third millennium onwards they clearly are embraced by the enclosures..."
|Fig. 6 (Velera et al. 2014)|
A stunning array of grave types are noted here, most of which seem to overlap. There's a clear differentiation between those re-buried in the Tholoi, those who were cremated...
"...although belonging to exactly the same chronological span, the material assemblages in the cremation contexts differ significantly from those recorded in the re-utilization of tholoi tomb 2. For example, anthropomorphic ivory figurines only appear in the cremation contexts, the morphology of arrowheads is totally different, necklace beads are from different raw materials and so on, suggesting that the different treatment of the body is associated with contrasting material assemblages, possibly expressing different group identities or people of different social rank."