Approaches to Understanding Skeletal Part Frequencies in Roman Assemblages

Author(s): Kate Trusler

Year: 2016


Since the 1950s, zooarchaeologists have noticed that the expected number of each skeletal element varied from the recovered frequencies. Determining the reason for such variation is an important aspect of zooarchaeological research. Several approaches to understanding skeletal part frequencies are current, including density mediated attrition and differential transport. One method of interpreting skeletal part frequencies that is underused in studies of complex societies involves food utility indices. Food utility indices provide a framework for interpreting skeletal part frequencies based on the food (meat, marrow and grease) associated with each element. Food utility can also be used as a proxy for economic value in complex societies. A food utility index for cattle was created for this project and the site of Maasplein, Nijmegen is used as an example.

Cite this Record

Approaches to Understanding Skeletal Part Frequencies in Roman Assemblages. Kate Trusler. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 405413)

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections


Geographic Keywords

Spatial Coverage

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