Diet and mobility of an Iron Age population in Switzerland; Stable carbon, nitrogen and sulphur isotope analysis of the human remains from Münsingen

Hossein Moghaddam Horri, Negahnaz; Müller, Felix; Hafner, Albert; Lösch, Sandra (March 2015). Diet and mobility of an Iron Age population in Switzerland; Stable carbon, nitrogen and sulphur isotope analysis of the human remains from Münsingen. Program of the 84th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Physical Anthropologists, p. 229.

The 220 abundantly equipped burials from the Late Iron Age cemetery of Münsingen (420 – 240 BC) marked a milestone for Iron Age research. The evident horizontal spread throughout the time of occupancy laid the foundation for the chronology system of the Late Iron Age. Today the skulls of 77 individuals and some postcranial bones are still preserved. The aim was to obtain information about nutrition, social stratification and migration of the individuals from Münsingen. Stable isotope ratios of carbon, nitrogen and sulphur were analysed. The results of 63 individuals show that all consumed C3 plants as staple food with significant differences between males and females in δ13C and δ15N values. The results indicate a gender restriction in access to animal protein. Stable isotope values of one male buried with weapons and meat as grave goods suggest a diet with more animal proteins than the other individuals. It is possible that he was privileged due to high status. Furthermore, the δ34S values indicate minor mobility. Assuming that the subadults represent the local signal of δ34S it is very likely that adults with enriched δ34S could have migrated to Münsingen at some point during their lives. This study presents stable isotope values of one of the most important Late Iron Age burial sites in Central Europe. The presented data provide new insight into diet, migration and social stratification of the population from Münsingen.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)

Division/Institute:

04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute of Legal Medicine
06 Faculty of Humanities > Department of History and Archaeology > Institute of Archaeological Sciences > Pre- and Early History
04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute of Legal Medicine > Anthropology

Graduate School:

Graduate School for Cellular and Biomedical Sciences (GCB)

UniBE Contributor:

Hossein Moghaddam Horri, Negahnaz; Müller, Felix; Hafner, Albert and Lösch, Sandra

Subjects:

900 History > 930 History of ancient world (to ca. 499)
500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology

Funders:

[4] Swiss National Science Foundation

Projects:

[UNSPECIFIED] Nutrition, origin, and social stratification in the Late Iron Age. Stable isotope analysis of Swiss skeletal series

Language:

English

Submitter:

Sandra Lösch

Date Deposited:

26 Nov 2015 14:27

Last Modified:

15 Feb 2016 10:42

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/73133

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