Isotope Analysis for Mobility and Climate Studies

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

Isotope studies in archaeology are often concerned with the analysis of preserved proteins for the reconstruction of past diets, but isotopic signatures in the mineral phase of archaeological skeletons can also be used to reconstruct place of residence and even the contemporary local climate. These applications are based upon the premise of a relationship between underlying local geology/local soils (strontium) and ingested water (oxygen) to the body isotope chemistry of the individuals in question (see reviews in Bentley 2006, and Pederzani and Britton 2019). Where the distribution of isotope signatures within and across different ecosystems varies predictably, these methods can be used to source human and animal remains to specific regions or to identify non-local outliers or migrants (e.g., Bentley 2013; Müldner et al. 2009).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationArchaeological Science
Subtitle of host publicationAn Introduction
EditorsMichael Richards, Kate Britton
PublisherCambridge University Press
Chapter5
Pages99-124
Number of pages26
ISBN (Electronic)9781139013826
ISBN (Print)9780521144124
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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Britton, K. (2020). Isotope Analysis for Mobility and Climate Studies. In M. Richards, & K. Britton (Eds.), Archaeological Science: An Introduction (pp. 99-124). Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/9781139013826.005