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Archaeodiet in the Greek World

Dietary Reconstruction from Stable Isotope Analysis

Archaeodiet in the Greek World by Anastasia Papathanasiou
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Occasional Wiener Laboratory Series 2The analysis of stable isotope ratios of carbon and nitrogen in bone collagen provides a powerful tool for reconstructing past diets, since it provides the only direct evidence of the foods that were actually consumed. The chapters that comprise this volume describe the application of this methodology to the archaeology of Greece, a country whose archaeobotanical remains have been isotopically studied more extensively than any other place in the world. The archaeological issues that can be addressed using stable isotope methods include the importance of fishing; the possible early introduction of millet; the nature of childrearing including weaning age and weaning foods; temporal shifts in protein consumption; differential access to certain foods associated with social status as well as gender and age; and cultural differences in dietary patterns. Additionally, diet is strongly correlated with health or stress markers in the teeth and bones. Knowing what people ate has vital implications for our understanding of past environments and economies, subsistence strategies, and nutrition.
American School of Classical Studies at Athens; August 2015
225 pages; ISBN 9781621390213
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Title: Archaeodiet in the Greek World
Author: Anastasia Papathanasiou; Michael P. Richards; Sherry C. Fox
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