By Mary E. Lewis
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Additional resources for Bioarchaeology of Children
Formicola and Buzhiova (2004) reported on the double burial of two children aged 9–10 and 12–13 years old from Sunghir in Russia. The remains were found head to head, with ivory spears and rich gravegoods, and covered in red ochre. Palaeopathological examination of the remains suggests that both were suffering from congenital abnormalities producing bowing of the femora. This burial adds weight to the theory that in the Upper Palaeolithic, visibly disabled individuals were afforded The marginalised child?
Extrapolating such evidence could allow us to analyse the number of lactating females within a cemetery, refine our estimate of maternal mortality, and aid in the identification of pregnant and lactating women within the forensic context. 6 Summary Arguments that the remains of infants and children will not survive the burial environment are unfounded, and in large cemetery excavations, non-adult remains can be found in sufficient numbers to allow in-depth research into their morbidity and mortality to be carried out.
In North America, sites such as Indian Knoll have yielded 420 nonadults (Johnston, 1962). Collections of known age and sex also exist, most notably the 66 non-adults from Coimbra in Portugal with a known cause of death (Santos and Roberts, 2001). , 1995). In fact, at some sites non-adult remains can be better preserved than their adult counterparts (Katzenberg, 2000). Buckberry (2000) reviewed the proportion of non-adult remains recovered from Anglo-Saxon cemeteries and noted that where adult bone preservation was good, so were the remains of the children.