Roman Bioarchaeology Carnival XXVIII
|Battered body from the bog|
(credit: Washington Post)
- 1 April. A Danish team from Aarhus University found the remains of 40 men buried in the Teutoberg Forest during Roman campaigns in the early first century A.D. While these remains come from a bog, they are not bog bodies (which are shells of leather skin with few or no bones) but rather well-preserved skeletons.
- 9 April. "Archaeologists Find 10,000 Objects from Roman London"... and not one of them is a human skeleton, unfortunately. But still a neat find (including phallic good luck charms)!
- 14 April. So this is La Tene period and not Roman, but 14 burials in Iron Age Gaul point to possible warriors.
- 17 April. According to LiveScience, "Roman-Era 'Cosmetics' May Have Treated Eye Chlamydia." Wendy Morrison at Oxford University thinks that some of the so-called toiletry kits found in Roman Britain may instead be related to treatment of eye conditions like chlamydia. Yes, you can get chlamydia in your eye.
- 30 April. Workmen digging to lay a water pipe came across at least four individuals who likely date back to the Roman period in Stickford, England. Two were buried on their backs, but two -- an adult and child -- were "spooning," which isn't a common burial form for this time and place. I haven't seen any follow-ups to this story yet, but the bones are being analyzed now.
Old Finds in the News
|Skeletons from Herculaneum (credit)|
- 30 March. The bodies from Herculaneum are in the news this month. An article in Heritage Daily summarizes some of the articles and books that deal with the human skeletal remains in "Bones of the Victims at Roman Herculaneum." There was some additional news coverage of Erica Rowan's dissertation work on food remains from the sewers at Herculaneum in this BBC news video.
- 14 January. Smithsonian Magazine has a piece on how "Romans Did All Sorts of Weird Things in the Public Baths--Like Getting Their Teeth Cleaned." Frankly, cleaning one's teeth in a bath is not weird... it's what we do every day.
- 25 April. The Museum of London has launched their Romans Revealed project to teach the public about immigrants and other lesser-known populations in Roman Britain. There's a fairly long history now of finding Africans in particular in England, which I've covered previously here and here, and a great book called Roman Diasporas that you can check out for more info.
- 25 April. A new Roman cookbook has come out, which inspired The Independent to publish a summary of historical info on Roman cooking as "Dinner at the Pompeii Takeaway." No osteological or palaeobotanical info, of course. There are, at least, two Roman-inspired recipes at the end of the article.
- 26 April. The IJPP has an article by the team of Wheeler, Williams, Dupras, and Beauchesne on child abuse in Roman-era Egypt: "Shattered lives and broken childhoods: Evidence of physical child abuse in ancient Egypt."
- 28 April. An article out in IJOA by Andre and colleagues deals with "Cremated human remains deposited in two phases: Evidence from the necropolis of the Tuileries site (Lyon, France: 2nd century AD)."
- Project Noah is an attempt to crowd-source information about the natural world. They have a second on osteology -- people can upload pictures of animal bones they find lying around and ask for help with identification or identify the bones themselves. It's a neat repository of photos of contemporary wildlife and domesticated animals. Since I get several emails each year from people wanting to know what species the bone they found belongs to, this site is very useful to me.