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Arkadiusz Sołtysiak, Holger Schutkowski
OBJECTIVES: Stable carbon and nitrogen isotope ratios (δ13 C and δ15 N) were used to reconstruct the history of subsistence strategies in the middle Euphrates valley, NE Syria, in six temporal subsets dating from the Early Bronze Age (c. 2300 BCE) to the Modern period (19th/20th century CE). The study aims to demonstrate that changes in political and social organization over time, for which the archaeological record suggests different goals of land use and modes of production, register through dietary patterns that are reflected in isotopic data...
April 17, 2018: American Journal of Physical Anthropology
Rachael C Bible, A Townsend Peterson
OBJECTIVES: To assess ecological niche similarity for biological and archaeological samples representing late-surviving Neandertals in Europe to evaluate the validity of combining these two types of data in ecological niche modeling analyses. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Tests of niche conservatism were used to assess niche similarity and niche identity of samples of morphologically diagnostic Neandertal remains and Middle Paleolithic (MP) archaeological sites dating to the time period leading up to Neandertal extinction...
April 17, 2018: American Journal of Physical Anthropology
Rumsaïs Blatrix, Bruno Roux, Philippe Béarez, Gabriela Prestes-Carneiro, Marcelo Amaya, Jose Luis Aramayo, Leonor Rodrigues, Umberto Lombardo, Jose Iriarte, Jonas Gregorio de Souza, Mark Robinson, Cyril Bernard, Marc Pouilly, Mélisse Durécu, Carl F Huchzermeyer, Mashuta Kalebe, Alex Ovando, Doyle McKey
Archaeology provides few examples of large-scale fisheries at the frontier between catching and farming of fish. We analysed the spatial organization of earthen embankments to infer the functioning of a landscape-level pre-Columbian Amazonian fishery that was based on capture of out-migrating fish after reproduction in seasonal floodplains. Long earthen weirs cross floodplains. We showed that weirs bear successive V-shaped features (termed 'Vs' for the sake of brevity) pointing downstream for outflowing water and that ponds are associated with Vs, the V often forming the pond's downstream wall...
April 16, 2018: Scientific Reports
Morgana Camacho, Adauto Araújo, Johnica Morrow, Jane Buikstra, Karl Reinhard
In the field of archaeological parasitology, researchers have long documented the distribution of parasites in archaeological time and space through the analysis of coprolites and human remains. This area of research defined the origin and migration of parasites through presence/absence studies. By the end of the 20th century, the field of pathoecology had emerged as researchers developed an interest in the ancient ecology of parasite transmission. Supporting studies were conducted to establish the relationships between parasites and humans, including cultural, subsistence, and ecological reconstructions...
April 16, 2018: Parasites & Vectors
T Proffitt, V L Luncz, S Malaivijitnond, M Gumert, M S Svensson, M Haslam
The discovery of oil palm ( Elaeis guineensis ) nut-cracking by wild long-tailed macaques ( Macaca fascicularis ) is significant for the study of non-human primate and hominin percussive behaviour. Up until now, only West African chimpanzees ( Pan troglodytes verus ) and modern human populations were known to use stone hammers to crack open this particular hard-shelled palm nut. The addition of non-habituated, wild macaques increases our comparative dataset of primate lithic percussive behaviour focused on this one plant species...
March 2018: Royal Society Open Science
Vishnupriya Kolipakam, Fiona M Jordan, Michael Dunn, Simon J Greenhill, Remco Bouckaert, Russell D Gray, Annemarie Verkerk
The Dravidian language family consists of about 80 varieties (Hammarström H. 2016 Glottolog 2.7 ) spoken by 220 million people across southern and central India and surrounding countries (Steever SB. 1998 In The Dravidian languages (ed. SB Steever), pp. 1-39: 1). Neither the geographical origin of the Dravidian language homeland nor its exact dispersal through time are known. The history of these languages is crucial for understanding prehistory in Eurasia, because despite their current restricted range, these languages played a significant role in influencing other language groups including Indo-Aryan (Indo-European) and Munda (Austroasiatic) speakers...
March 2018: Royal Society Open Science
Joan Viciano, Ruggero D'Anastasio
BACKGROUND: This study is based in an analysis of the skeletal remains of an adult male from the Teramo Sant'Anna archaeological site (7th-12th centuries of the Common Era, Teramo, Italy). RESULTS AND DISCUSSION: The individual shows distinct abnormalities that principally involve asymmetric hypoplasia and dysmorphogenesis of the facial skeleton. The combination of these findings and the absence of abnormalities of the spine strongly suggest diagnosis of the congenital malformation known as hemifacial microsomia...
April 6, 2018: Archives of Oral Biology
M Verezhak, E F Rauch, M Véron, C Lancelon-Pin, J-L Putaux, M Plazanet, A Gourrier
The nanoscale characteristics of the mineral phase in bone tissue such as nanocrystal size, organization, structure and composition have been identified as potential markers of bone quality. However, such characterization remains challenging since it requires combining structural analysis and imaging modalities with nanoscale precision. In this paper, we report the first application of automated crystal orientation mapping using transmission electron microscopy (ACOM-TEM) to the structural analysis of bone mineral at the individual nanocrystal level...
April 9, 2018: Acta Biomaterialia
Enrico Sassoni
The present paper reviews the methods and the performance of in situ formation of calcium phosphates (CaP) for the conservation of materials belonging to cultural heritage. The core idea is to form CaP (ideally hydroxyapatite, HAP, the most stable CaP at pH > 4) by reaction between the substrate and an aqueous solution of a phosphate salt. Initially proposed for the conservation of marble and limestone, the treatment has been explored for a variety of different substrates, including sandstones, sulphated stones, gypsum stuccoes, concrete, wall paintings, archaeological bones and paper...
April 4, 2018: Materials
Xin Wang, Benjamin T Fuller, Pengcheng Zhang, Songmei Hu, Yaowu Hu, Xue Shang
Research in to the nature of Neolithic agriculture in China is often focused on topics such as the domestication and spread of cereal crops and the reconstruction of human and animal diets in the past. Field management practices, such as organic manuring, have not been systematically investigated in Chinese archaeology. Here we present an isotopic dataset for archaeological foxtail millet (Setaria italica) and common millet (Panicum miliaceum) grains as well as associated faunal remains (both domesticated and wild) from seven sites in the Baishui Valley of north China, in order to find direct evidence of organic manuring during the Late Neolithic period...
April 3, 2018: Scientific Reports
Marcia S Ponce de León, Toetik Koesbardiati, John David Weissmann, Marco Milella, Carlos S Reyna-Blanco, Gen Suwa, Osamu Kondo, Anna-Sapfo Malaspinas, Tim D White, Christoph P E Zollikofer
The dispersal of modern humans from Africa is now well documented with genetic data that track population history, as well as gene flow between populations. Phenetic skeletal data, such as cranial and pelvic morphologies, also exhibit a dispersal-from-Africa signal, which, however, tends to be blurred by the effects of local adaptation and in vivo phenotypic plasticity, and that is often deteriorated by postmortem damage to skeletal remains. These complexities raise the question of which skeletal structures most effectively track neutral population history...
April 2, 2018: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Heather L Smith, Ted Goebel
Fluted projectile points have long been recognized as the archaeological signature of early humans dispersing throughout the Western Hemisphere; however, we still lack a clear understanding of their appearance in the interior "Ice-Free Corridor" of western Canada and eastern Beringia. To solve this problem, we conducted a geometric morphometric shape analysis and a phylogenetic analysis of technological traits on fluted points from the archaeological records of northern Alaska and Yukon, in combination with artifacts from further south in Canada, the Great Plains, and eastern United States to investigate the plausibility of historical relatedness and evolutionary patterns in the spread of fluted-point technology in the latest Pleistocene and earliest Holocene...
April 2, 2018: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Charles P Egeland, Manuel Domínguez-Rodrigo, Travis Rayne Pickering, Colin G Menter, Jason L Heaton
Humans are set apart from other organisms by the realization of their own mortality. Thus, determining the prehistoric emergence of this capacity is of significant interest to understanding the uniqueness of the human animal. Tracing that capacity chronologically is possible through archaeological investigations that focus on physical markers that reflect "mortality salience." Among these markers is the deliberate and culturally mediated disposal of corpses. Some Neandertal bone assemblages are among the earliest reasonable claims for the deliberate disposal of hominins, but even these are vigorously debated...
April 2, 2018: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
M Gabriela Russo, Fanny Mendisco, Sergio A Avena, Cristian M Crespo, Valeria Arencibia, Cristina B Dejean, Verónica Seldes
OBJECTIVES: The main aim of this work was to contribute to the knowledge of pre-Hispanic genetic variation and population structure among the South-central Andes Area by studying individuals from Quebrada de Humahuaca, North-western (NW) Argentina. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We analyzed 15 autosomal STRs in 19 individuals from several archaeological sites in Quebrada de Humahuaca, belonging to the Regional Developments Period (900-1430 AD). Compiling autosomal, mitochondrial, and Y-chromosome data, we evaluated population structure and differentiation among eight South-central Andean groups from the current territories of NW Argentina and Peru...
April 1, 2018: American Journal of Physical Anthropology
Garry Nolan, Atul Butte
The recent publication of the genetic analysis of the so-called Atacama skeleton [1] has raised important questions in the biological, archaeological, and anthropological communities. We have clearly stated previously that this skeleton should be repatriated and accorded proper respect as human remains, and echo recent demands for its repatriation.
March 30, 2018: Genome Research
Leona Bohdálková, Petr Bohdálek, Eva Břízová, Petra Pacherová, Aleš Antonín Kuběna
Three peat cores were extracted from the Kovářská Bog in the central Ore Mountains to study anthropogenic pollution generated by mining and metallurgy. The core profiles were14 C dated, and concentrations of selected elements were determined by ICP MS and HG-AAS. Principal component analysis indicated that Pb, Cu, As and Ag may be useful elements for the reconstruction of historical atmospheric pollution. Total and anthropogenic accumulation rates (ARs) of Pb, Cu and As estimated for the last ca. 3500years showed similar chronologies, and revealed twelve periods of elevated ARs of Pb, As and Cu related to possible mining and metallurgic activities...
March 27, 2018: Science of the Total Environment
Cristina Da Lio, Luigi Tosi
Land subsidence is a concern in many coastal plains worldwide, particularly in the low-lying areas already facing sea level rise due to climate change, and much still needs to be done, with respect to both mapping land subsidence and gaining a comprehensive understanding of the relevant cause-effect relationships. Land subsidence of the northern coastal plain encompassing the Friuli Venezia Giulia (FVG) region in Italy, remains, to the authors' knowledge, poorly investigated. This coastland includes low-lying agricultural and urban areas and highly valuable lagoon environments, archaeological and touristic sites, and industrial zones...
March 27, 2018: Science of the Total Environment
Ewen Callaway
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
March 29, 2018: Nature
Liz Gloyn, Vicky Crewe, Laura King, Anna Woodham
Using an interdisciplinary research methodology across three archaeological and historical case studies, this article explores "family archives." Four themes illustrate how objects held in family archives, curation practices, and intergenerational narratives reinforce a family's sense of itself: people-object interactions, gender, socialization and identity formation, and the "life course." These themes provide a framework for professional archivists to assist communities and individuals working with their own family archives...
April 2018: Journal of Family History
Joseba Rios-Garaizar, Oriol López-Bultó, Eneko Iriarte, Carlos Pérez-Garrido, Raquel Piqué, Arantza Aranburu, María José Iriarte-Chiapusso, Illuminada Ortega-Cordellat, Laurence Bourguignon, Diego Garate, Iñaki Libano
Aranbaltza is an archaeological complex formed by at least three open-air sites. Between 2014 and 2015 a test excavation carried out in Aranbaltza III revealed the presence of a sand and clay sedimentary sequence formed in floodplain environments, within which six sedimentary units have been identified. This sequence was formed between 137-50 ka, and includes several archaeological horizons, attesting to the long-term presence of Neanderthal communities in this area. One of these horizons, corresponding with Unit 4, yielded two wooden tools...
2018: PloS One
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