This paper is based on the analysis of 73 burial sites spread out over the northwestern quarter of France, dating from the Aisne-Marne II A (La Tène A1) to the La Tène D2 periods. The methodological approach aims to characterize the La Tène burial areas and their evolution in Picardy. To this end, we drew up an analytical grid which takes into account, in the first place, criteria related to the geographical situation (plateau, valley, plain and coastal region), to topographical features (terrace, side, edge, shelf and hill), but also to the human environment (attached to or in close proximity to a dwelling zone, a mound or tumulus); and, in the second place, criteria related to the morphology, the organization and the evolution of the burial area itself. These areas may be open, or delimited by boundaries such as paths or enclosures; they may be attached to a settlement, or not. The burials may be isolated, or form groups, or nuclei; they may be distributed in lines or scattered at random with no apparent organization. In certain cases, we may note the existence of structuring factors such as pre-existing tumuli, contemporary or slightly earlier aristocratic burials, empty spaces. As concerns the evolution of the site, it may be traced in the number of stages and in the growth of the cemetery, with either a densification on the spot, or an expansion, or a shift to another zone. The study of these parameters enables us to define certain groups of sites and to highlight certain differences in the options adopted according to time and space.

The aim is to understand the general evolution of the social structuring, and to highlight the choices governing the installation and management of the funerary space during the La Tène period.