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Till Death Do Us Part: A Bioarchaeological Investigation of Female Kinship Ties in Early Medieval Ireland

Author(s): Niamh Daly

Year: 2015

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The introduction of Christianity in the 5th century had far reaching effects in Ireland. The first few centuries of the early medieval period (c.400-1200AD) is considered as a time of dramatic cultural transformation. The documentary record that emerged in the wake of this process was created by male clergy in a rural, hierarchical, patrilineal society where the position of women was complex.

This research uses archaeologically-recovered human remains from the immediate post-conversion period to assess the changing culture of female kinship ties and post-marital residence patterns. An essential strategy for this research is the application of biogeochemical techniques, namely, stable isotopic analysis to assess if the chemical analysis of the human skeletal remains negates or validates historically-derived narratives regarding female kinship ties. The results of this research increase the visibility of the lives of the female cohort in early historic Irish society.

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Till Death Do Us Part: A Bioarchaeological Investigation of Female Kinship Ties in Early Medieval Ireland. Niamh Daly. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 397807)


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min long: -11.074; min lat: 37.44 ; max long: 50.098; max lat: 70.845 ;

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America