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Title: Geochemical and spectroscopic approach to the characterization of earliest cremated human bones from the Levant (PPNB of Kharaysin, Jordan)
Authors: Iriarte, Eneko
García Tojal, Javier
Santana-Cabrera, Jonathan
Jorge-Villar, Susana E.
Teira Mayolini, Luis César
Muñiz Álvarez, Juan Ramón
Ibáñez Estévez, Juan José
Keywords: Cremation;PPNB;Jordan;X-ray diffraction;FTIR;EPR;Raman spectroscopy
Issue Date: Apr-2020
Publisher: Elsevier
Citation: Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports, 2020, 30, 102211
Abstract: Cremation is a widespread funerary practice that aims to burn the body and create a new appearance of human remains. It has been interpreted as a ritual transition that includes a sequence of acts and processes aimed at commemorating the dead on an individual and collective scale. In the Near East, fire-induced manipulation or cremation was not a usual burial practice during the Pre-Pottery Neolithic. In this contribution, we present the geochemical (X-ray fluorescence), mineralogical (X-ray Diffraction) and spectroscopic (Raman spectroscopy, Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy and (Electron Paramagnetic Resonance) analysis of bones from a Late Pre-Pottery Neolithic B (ca. 9000 yr cal BP) burial in Kharaysin site (Quneya, Zarqa) in northwest Jordan. We discuss the data obtained by the different analytical methods reviewing the state of the art of each analytical method to infer bone burning palaeotemperatures. Finally, it is demonstrated the burned character of the analysed bones, confirming the earliest presence of cremated human bones in a funerary context of the Pre-Pottery Neolithic of the Near East in Kharaysin. This fact provides a new insight into the complexity and variability of burial customs within the Pre-Pottery Neolithic in Levant.
ISSN: 2352-409X
DOI: 10.1016/j.jasrep.2020.102211
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Type: Article
Appears in Collections:Geocronología y Geología

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