The Holocene is the name given to the interglacial which followed the lastglacial, and is the epoch of the Quaternary in which we live today. This epoch, warm in comparison to that which preceded it, began around 12,000 years ago. From an archaeological point of view, the Holocene comprises all of history after the Palaeolithic, beginning with the Mesolithic. The environment was initially transformed by the naturally warming climate and the recovery of vegetation that accompanied it. Since the Neolithic and the invention of agriculture, the impact of humankind on the environment has increased in line with the rise in population. At Étiolles, the Neolithic period is marked by layers of colluvium, sediments deposited at the bottom of slopes after erosion, in this case primarily soil erosion.