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Fructured skulls?

Posted by amosor on 29 Aug 2008 at 12:01 GMT

All these skulls: "(D)-Skull of early Holocene adult male (as in C) . (E)-Skull of an early Holocene juvenile (G3B17b; ~7630 B.C.E; " are fragmentated. Why? The rest of the skeleton looks perfect.

Author's response:

BoraZivkovic replied to amosor on 31 Aug 2008 at 20:46 GMT

Good question. The skull caps (calvaria) of the skeletons are often the highest point and thus the first to appear during erosion. We spotted dozens of burials in this way. If you look at the two skulls you mention, there is a yellow area on the calvarium of the adult and a reddish area on the juvenile. These were exposed to sand blasting and sun.

When they become exposed, the skull parts break and deflate. We took great care in saving and reconstructing all pieces, because Gobero offers the rare opportunity for quantitative study of skull form. When we did need a little supporting epoxy, we left it a different color. When we sampled teeth for bioapatite 14C dating, we replaced the original with exact epoxy casts, so as not to dimiish the study of wear etc.

Thanks for your interest.

Paul Sereno