Prehistoric Human Bone

Archaeology at the Molecular Level

  • Joseph B. Lambert
  • Gisela Grupe

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages I-IX
  2. Isotopic analysis

  3. Element Analysis

    1. P. Francalacci, M. E. Subirá, S. Borgognini Tarli, R. Macchiarelli, A. Malgosa, A. Palmieri
      Pages 173-188
    2. R. G. V. Hancock, M. D. Grynpas, K. Åkesson, K. B. Obrant, J. Turnquist, M. J. Kessler
      Pages 189-201
    3. Joseph B. Lambert, Jane M. Weydert-Homeyer
      Pages 217-228
  4. Molecular Analysis

  5. Physical Analysis

    1. Heinrich Newesely
      Pages 293-308
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 309-313

About this book


Locked up within human bone are tantalizing clues concerning the diets consumed by ancient peoples. On the one hand the amounts of certain elementsin bone (strontium, zinc) serve as measures of protein, fiber, and calcium intake. On the other hand, the ratios of carbon isotopes and of nitrogen isotopes provide information on questions of fish vs. meat, herbivore vs. carnivore, or (for animals) browser (shrubs) vs. grazer (grasses). Such information can provide a window on many aspects of prehistoric cultures and can supplement the nonskeletal archaeological record. In addition to these two approaches, the biochemical record in bone from protein and nucleic acids such as DNA serves as a source of nondietary information such as genetic relationships. This volume treats all three subjects.: elemental, isotopic, and biochemical. The foremost experts in the areas provide fundamental descriptions of the techniques, express their concerns over the limitations of the methods, and describe recent applications to archaeological studies.


Archaeology Calcium DNA Knochen Knochenchemie Paläoanthropologie ancien diet anthropology archeology bone chemistrry molecular nucleic acid palaeoanthropology protein vorgeschichtliche Ernährung

Editors and affiliations

  • Joseph B. Lambert
    • 1
  • Gisela Grupe
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of ChemistryNorthwestern UniversityEvanstonUSA
  2. 2.Institut für Anthropologie und HumangenetikLudwig-Maximilian-UniversitätMünchenGermany

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1993
  • Publisher Name Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-3-662-02896-4
  • Online ISBN 978-3-662-02894-0
  • Buy this book on publisher's site