COPPER AND BARIUM AS DIETARY DISCRIMINANTS: THE EFFECTS OF DIAGENESIS

J. B. LAMBERT, S. V. SIMPSON, C. B. SZPUNAR, J. E. BUIKSTRA

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

28 Scopus citations

Abstract

In skeletons excavated from Woodland sites, copper and barium levels are found to have been contaminated by influx from the soil environment. Electron microprobe scans for both elements show build‐up along the outer surface of femur cross sections. Elemental levels for Cu and Ba are lower in the femur or fibula than in the more porous rib. The distribution of Cu in the immediately surrounding soil is highly anisotropic. These observations indicate that Cu and Ba should not be used for dietary inferences about ancient populations without independent evidence that diagenesis is not important.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)131-138
Number of pages8
JournalArchaeometry
Volume26
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1984
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Archaeology

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