an archaeological study of human decapitation burials

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An Archaeological Study Of Human Decapitation Burials

Author : Katie Tucker
ISBN : 1473825512
Genre : Beheading
File Size : 36. 71 MB
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This is an in depth yet accessible study of human decapitation burials in Roman Britain. Dr Katie Tucker studied this subject for her doctorate and so is a leading expert in the area. Her findings go against conventional views of human decapitation burials of this period, which traditionally favor the view of a post-mortem removal of the head. Instead, Katie found the majority of the evidence did not support this theory and so concluded that most decapitations were likely to have been performed prior to death, potentially as a result of execution or human sacrifice. In order to gain a full insight into the ways in which these burials were formed and the reasoning behind these practices, Katie compares the decapitation burials to the burials of the wider Romano-British cemetery population. In doing this, Katie is able to better understand the differences between decapitated individuals and the rest of the population in terms of burial practice, demographics and ante-mortem health status.Decapitation burials are not only confined to the Roman period and so Katie also discusses the context of them in the Neolithic, Bronze Age, Iron Age, Early Medieval, Medieval and Post Medieval periods in order to assess whether there is continuity between periods.REVIEWS Of the many different burial practices, decapitation burials are one of the most intriguing. These unusual cases - with the skull placed elsewhere in the grave, removed from the grave entirely, or where cut-marks clearly indicate its separation from the body - are widely believed to be some form of burial ritual after death. Not so, Tucker argues. Drawing on her doctoral research, she re-examines the evidence and, focusing on skeletal trauma, comes to a different conclusion - that the majority of these decapitations were performed prior to death. The subject of decapitation is approached chronologically from prehistory to the medieval period with a particular focus on the decapitation elsewhere within the Roman Empire, and also its presence in ancient European art and literature, broadens the scope.The technical language used will most benefit those familiar with skeletal anatomy, but the inclusion of color photographs of a number of examples, as well as some unusual reconstruction drawings, certainly aids understanding. Current Archaeology

Care In The Past

Author : Lindsay Powell
ISBN : 9781785703362
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 79. 89 MB
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Care-giving is an activity that has been practiced by all human societies. From the earliest societies through to the present, all humans have faced choices regarding how people in positions of dependency are to be treated. As such, care-giving, and the form it takes, is a central experience of being a human and one that is culturally mediated. Archaeology has tended to marginalise the study of care, and debates surrounding our ability to recognise it within the archaeological record have often remained implicit rather than a focus of discussion. These 12 papers examine the topic of care in past societies and specifically how we might recognise the provision of care in archaeological contexts and to open up an inter-disciplinary conversation, including historical, bioarchaeological, faunal and philosophical perspectives. The topic of ‘care’ is examined through three different strands: the provision of care throughout the life course, namely that provided to the youngest and oldest members of a society; care-giving and attitudes towards impairment and disability in prehistoric and historic contexts, and the role of animals as both recipients of care and as tools for its provision.

Deviant Burial In The Archaeological Record

Author : Eileen M. Murphy
ISBN : 9781782975359
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 36. 63 MB
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This edited volume contains twelve papers that present evidence on non-normative burial practices from the Neolithic through to Post-Medieval periods and includes case studies from some ten countries. It has long been recognised by archaeologists that certain individuals in a variety of archaeological cultures from diverse periods and locations have been accorded differential treatment in burial relative to other members of their society. These individuals can include criminals, women who died during childbirth, unbaptised infants, people with disabilities, and supposed revenants, to name but a few. Such burials can be identifiable in the archaeological record from an examination of the location and external characteristics of the grave site. Furthermore, the position of the body in addition to its association with unusual grave goods can be a further feature of atypical burials. The motivation behind such non-normative burial practices is also diverse and can be related to a wide variety of social and religious beliefs. It is envisaged that the volume will make a significant contribution towards our understanding of the complexities involved when dealing with non-normative burials in the archaeological record.

The Routledge Handbook Of The Bioarchaeology Of Human Conflict

Author : Christopher Knüsel
ISBN : 9781134677979
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 27. 88 MB
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If human burials were our only window onto the past, what story would they tell? Skeletal injuries constitute the most direct and unambiguous evidence for violence in the past. Whereas weapons or defenses may simply be statements of prestige or status and written sources are characteristically biased and incomplete, human remains offer clear and unequivocal evidence of physical aggression reaching as far back as we have burials to examine. Warfare is often described as ‘senseless’ and as having no place in society. Consequently, its place in social relations and societal change remains obscure. The studies in The Routledge Handbook of the Bioarchaeology of Human Conflict present an overview of the nature and development of human conflict from prehistory to recent times as evidenced by the remains of past people themselves in order to explore the social contexts in which such injuries were inflicted. A broadly chronological approach is taken from prehistory through to recent conflicts, however this book is not simply a catalogue of injuries illustrating weapon development or a narrative detailing ‘progress’ in warfare but rather provides a framework in which to explore both continuity and change based on a range of important themes which hold continuing relevance throughout human development.

Anglo Saxon Deviant Burial Customs

Author : Andrew Reynolds
ISBN : 9780191567650
Genre : History
File Size : 86. 23 MB
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Anglo-Saxon Deviant Burial Customs is the first detailed consideration of the ways in which Anglo-Saxon society dealt with social outcasts. Beginning with the period following Roman rule and ending in the century following the Norman Conquest, it surveys a period of fundamental social change, which included the conversion to Christianity, the emergence of the late Saxon state, and the development of the landscape of the Domesday Book. While an impressive body of written evidence for the period survives in the form of charters and law-codes, archaeology is uniquely placed to investigate the earliest period of post-Roman society - the fifth to seventh centuries - for which documents are lacking. For later centuries, archaeological evidence can provide us with an independent assessment of the realities of capital punishment and the status of outcasts. Andrew Reynolds argues that outcast burials show a clear pattern of development in this period. In the pre-Christian centuries, 'deviant' burial remains are found only in community cemeteries, but the growth of kingship and the consolidation of territories during the seventh century witnessed the emergence of capital punishment and places of execution in the English landscape. Locally determined rites, such as crossroads burial, now existed alongside more formal execution cemeteries. Gallows were located on major boundaries, often next to highways, always in highly visible places. The findings of this pioneering national study thus have important consequences on our understanding of Anglo-Saxon society. Overall, Reynolds concludes, organized judicial behaviour was a feature of the earliest Anglo-Saxon kingdoms, rather than just the two centuries prior to the Norman Conquest.

The Oxford Handbook Of Roman Britain

Author : Laurence Professor of Classical Archaeology Martin Millett
ISBN : 9780199697731
Genre : Great Britain
File Size : 32. 87 MB
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Roman Britain is a critical area of research within the provinces of the Roman empire. It has formed the context for many of the seminal publications on the nature of imperialism and cultural change. Roman rule had a profound impact culture of Iron Age Britain, with new forms of material culture, and new forms of knowledge. On the other hand, there is evidence that such impacts were not uniform, leading to questions of resistance and continuity of pre-existing cultural forms. Within the last 15-20 years, the study of Roman Britain has been transformed through an enormous amount of new and interesting work which is not reflected in the main stream literature. The new archaeological work by a young generation has moved away from the narrative historical approach towards one much more closely focused on the interpretation of material. It has produced new interpretations of the material and a new light on the archaeology of the province, grounded in a close reading of the material evidence as collected by previous scholars and exploiting the rich library of publications on Romano-British studies. For the first time, this volume draws together the various scholars working on new approaches to Roman Britain to produce a comprehensive study of the present state and future trajectory of the subject. Arranged thematically and focussed primarily on the archaeological evidence, the volume challenges more traditional narrative approaches and explores new theoretical perspectives in order to better understand the archaeology of the province and its place within the wider context of the Roman Empire.

Anglo Saxon Studies In Archaeology And History 14

Author : Sarah Semple
ISBN : 9781782975083
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 21. 90 MB
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Volume 14 of the Anglo-Saxon Studies in Archaeology and History series is dedicated to the archaeology of early medieval death, burial and commemoration. Incorporating studies focusing upon Anglo-Saxon England as well as research encompassing western Britain, Continental Europe and Scandinavia, this volume originated as the proceedings of a two-day conference held at the University of Exeter in February 2004. It comprises of an Introduction that outlines the key debates and new approaches in early medieval mortuary archaeology followed by eighteen innovative research papers offering new interpretations of the material culture, monuments and landscape context of early medieval mortuary practices. Papers contribute to a variety of ongoing debates including the study of ethnicity, religion, ideology and social memory from burial evidence. The volume also contains two cemetery reports of early Anglo-Saxon cemeteries from Cambridgeshire.

The Archaeology Of Human Bones

Author : Simon Mays
ISBN : 9781136971778
Genre : Science
File Size : 29. 1 MB
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The Archaeology of Human Bones provides an up to date account of the scientific analysis of human skeletal remains from archaeological sites. This completely revised edition reflects the latest developments in scientific techniques for studying human skeletons and the latest applications of those techniques in archaeology. In particular, the sections on ancient DNA and bone stable isotopes have been comprehensively updated, and two completely new chapters have been introduced, covering metric study of the postcranial skeleton and ethical dimensions of the study of human remains. The Archaeology of Human Bones introduces students to the anatomy of bones and teeth, utilising a large number of images. It analyzes the biasing effects of decay and incomplete recovery on burial data from archaeological sites, and discusses what we may learn about burial rites from human remains. Subsequent chapters focus on demographic analysis of earlier populations, normal skeletal variation, disease and injury, isotopic and DNA analysis of bone, the study of cremated bone and ethical aspects of working with ancient human remains. Current scientific methods are explained, alongside a critical discussion of their strengths and weaknesses. The ways in which scientific analyses of human skeletal remains can contribute to tackling major archaeological or historical issues is illustrated by means of examples drawn from studies from around the world. Technical jargon is kept to a minimum, and each chapter contains a summary of the main points that a student should grasp and a list of further reading targeted to enable students to follow up major issues covered in the book. Featuring case studies from around the world and with copious illustrations, The Archaeology of Human Bones continues to be a crucial work for students of archaeology.

Death And Burial In Iron Age Britain

Author : D. W. Harding
ISBN : 9780199687565
Genre : Burial
File Size : 90. 8 MB
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Archaeologists have long acknowledged the absence of a regular and recurrent burial rite in the British Iron Age, and have looked to rites such as cremation and scattering of remains to explain the minimal impact of funerary practices on the archaeological record. In Death and Burial in Iron Age Britain, Harding examines the deposition of human and animal remains from the period - from whole skeletons to disarticulated fragments - and challenges theassumption that there should have been any regular form of cemetery in prehistory, arguing that the dead were more commonly integrated into settlements of the living than segregated into dedicated cemeteries.

Death And Dying In The Neolithic Near East

Author : Karina Croucher
ISBN : 9780199693955
Genre : History
File Size : 49. 14 MB
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Going beyond traditional concerns such as wealth, status, and social hierarchy, Karina Croucher here explores a variety of new approaches to the mortuary archaeology of the Neolithic Near East. Case studies reinterpret the remarkable plastered skulls, as well as plaster statuary, headless burials, relationships between human and animal remains, food consumption and cannibalism. Topics such as human interaction with the environment, identity, personhood and gender are stressed, providing a window on a more complex, more "humanised" Near Eastern Neolithic.

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