RECORDING DISARTICULATED AND COMMINGLED HUMAN REMAINS IN OSTEOARCHAEOLOGY
ABOUT THE COURSE
Due to a Heritage Lottery Fund grant, there is no course fee for attendance on this course. Course participants are encouraged to reinforce their learning by staying on as a volunteer for further supervised recording sessions the following week (22nd – 26th July 2019). No volunteer fees will be charged to attendees of this course who take up this opportunity or return to SHARP in 2020 to volunteer during a second follow-on ‘disartic’ recording opportunity (subject to availability). There is a charge for overnight on-site facilities (see rates).
The course is a five-day course (Monday – Friday) that assumes no prior knowledge of either archaeology or osteology. It is based on the post-excavation recording of the human remains excavated from the Anglo-Saxon cemetery site at Sedgeford. Over 300 incomplete articulated burials have been excavated and recording of these has been done. A considerable quantity of disarticulated and commingled human remains has also been excavated from the Sedgeford site and it is this assemblage that the course focusses on.
Students will learn how to identify disarticulated and fragmented human skeletal elements and how to record them. This will include learning how to estimate age-at-death and biological sex, take osteo-metric measurements for stature estimation, record non-metric variation, and describe pathological lesions. Students will also learn about the different causes of disarticulated and commingled human skeletal assemblages in archaeological contexts, the common challenges encountered when recording such collections as well as different approaches to recording and analysis. In addition, attendees will consider the potential of re-association of disarticulated human bone to the articulated skeletons within the SHARP assemblage and give a short group presentation to the public at the end of the course to summarise their newly gained knowledge and findings from their recording.
The course content is taught through short lectures or participative seminar sessions and practical recording sessions. During the practical sessions, participants work in small groups of 2 or 3 to apply what they have learnt to the direct, hands-on analysis of disarticulated skeletal remains, with the help and supervision of course tutors.
This course makes use of disarticulated human remains excavated from the same area as the articulated skeletons used in teaching other SHARP human remains courses. It will involve lots of new content and skeletal material not previously used for teaching. However, potential participants who have previously attended a SHARP human remains course must expect some repetition. Even so, they may be interested in this course as a refresher or as an opportunity to further contribute to the recording of the SHARP human remains collection.
The minimum age requirement for this course is 16 years of age. Persons aged 16 and 17 may attend unaccompanied with parental or guardian permission.
w/c 19th and 26th July 2020
This course is supported by a Heritage Lottery Fund grant, with only the cost element of the course being payable. PLEASE NOTE THAT THE EARLY SEASON DISCOUNT IS NOT AVAILABLE FOR THIS COURSE.