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Keeping It in the Family?: An Investigation into the Relatedness of Individuals Found in an Ancient Maya Chultún

Author(s): Lauren Woolwine ; Lucy Atha ; Nicholas Shepetuk ; Hannah Plumer ; Katherine Miller Wolf

Year: 2017

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Summary

The ancient Maya site of Blue Creek, located in northern Belize, has revealed archaeological evidence suggesting regional occupation from the Preclassic through Terminal Classic periods. The excavation of one Late Classic group (550 C.E. - 830 C.E.), Kin Tan, by the Maya Research Project revealed a chultún containing the remains of five commingled individuals of various ages. Examination of these skeletal remains revealed some commonalities in postcranial non-metric traits among those interred within the chultún. Data were collected on 17 cranial and postcranial non-metric traits in order to determine whether the individuals within the Kin Tan chultún could be biologically related. Several common traits were observed (septal apertures, marginal tubercles, and suprameatal spines) in the sample, supporting the hypothesis that those individuals entombed within the Kin Tan chultún are potentially biologically related. This research helps to shed light on the mortuary rituals and funerary traditions of the occupants of Blue Creek.


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Cite this Record

Keeping It in the Family?: An Investigation into the Relatedness of Individuals Found in an Ancient Maya Chultún. Lauren Woolwine, Lucy Atha, Nicholas Shepetuk, Hannah Plumer, Katherine Miller Wolf. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 430326)


Keywords

Geographic Keywords
Mesoamerica


Spatial Coverage

min long: -107.271; min lat: 12.383 ; max long: -86.353; max lat: 23.08 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 17316

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