Using archaeological chemistry to investigate the geographic origins of trophy heads in the central andes: Strontium isotope analysis at the wari site of conchopata

Kelly Knudson, Tiffiny A. Tung

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

17 Scopus citations


Comparing strontium isotope results from archaeological bone-tooth pairs from individuals buried in mortuary spaces at the Wari site of Conchopata with Conchopata trophy heads shows that the trophy head strontium isotope signatures are more variable. This implies that the individuals transformed into trophy heads likely came from different geologic zones in the Andes, and were more likely to have been victims of raiding or warfare from different parts of the Andes rather than venerated ancestors from Conchopata or the surrounding region. These data also demonstrate the ability of strontium isotope analysis to elucidate individual life histories using archaeological bone-tooth pairs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationACS Symposium Series
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - 2007

Publication series

NameACS Symposium Series
ISSN (Print)00976156


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)

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