View Full Version : 9,000-year-old burials with sorted bones found in Jordan

01-22-2016, 05:30 PM
Danish archaeologists have unearthed a burial site in an ancient town in southern Jordan that suggests the dead were not buried until they had decomposed to skeletal remains. The skeletons were then dismantled and bones of similar types were buried together

Bones in the box
The bones were for the most part separated and placed in trunks located inside private homes.

“There is, for example, a very fine stone coffin in which the skulls were stacked together at one end and longer bones like those that come from the leg or the arm are located at the other end,” said University of Copenhagen researcher Marie Louise Jørkov.

Jørkov said that old skeletons are very fragile and must be excavated carefully. Some of them have been brought to Copenhagen for further study.

“It is extremely exciting to be involved,” said Jørkov. “We are probably dealing with some of the world’s first agriculturalists, and their bones can give us information about the lifestyle and chronic diseases they encountered.”

Changing lifestyles
About the time the skeletons were buried 9,000 years ago, their society was undergoing a major upheaval from primarily being hunter-gatherers who lived a nomadic life to settling down and becoming farmers.

Kinzel said the excavation of the sites will continue into the foreseeable future.



Shkarat Msaied Neolithic Project - University of Copenhagen (http://shkaratmsaied.tors.ku.dk/)

Shkarat Msaied: The 2005 Season of Excavations. ' A Short Preliminary Report (http://shkaratmsaied.tors.ku.dk/publications/Hermansen_et_al_2006_neolithics.pdf)