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Evidence of Perimortem Trauma and Taphonomic Damage in a WWI Soldier from Romania

Author(s): Megan K Kleeschulte ; Kathleen L Wheeler ; Mihai Constantinescu ; Thomas A Crist

Year: 2016

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 The remains of a World War I soldier recovered at the Comana Monastery in southern Romania provide a case study emphasizing how careful documentation of the archaeological context and effective communication between archaeologists and forensic anthropologists improve the accuracy of distinguishing perimortem trauma from postmortem taphonomic damage.   Killed in battle, this soldier’s skeleton presented evidence of sharp force trauma, blast fractures, and postmortem damage from a mass burial and subsequent archaeological excavation.  Collaborative analysis using photographs of the excavation together with current forensic anthropological methods proved essential in determining the sequence of perimortem injuries and establishing the most likely cause of the soldier’s death.

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Evidence of Perimortem Trauma and Taphonomic Damage in a WWI Soldier from Romania. Megan K Kleeschulte, Kathleen L Wheeler, Mihai Constantinescu, Thomas A Crist. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Washington, D.C. 2016 ( tDAR id: 434862)


Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 638

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