A few days ago I was collecting data for my dissertation when I opened a bone bag and immediately started smiling. I’ve been dealing with a lot of individual burials lately, for which the excavators very conscientiously bagged the material by element and labelled the bags. This necropolis is also beautifully mapped – major gold stars to the Spanish team that dug it! (Editor’s Note: I feel the need to point out that this is a novel phase of the summer for me – the collective burials I was working with earlier on were bagged en masse, and required quite a bit of sorting prior to analysis. So things are not always this cushy!).
Occasionally something will be sided incorrectly, or one of the forearm bones will be swapped, but for the most part accuracy in identification is high and the bag labels match what’s inside. However, I then came across this bag:
Your bone quiz for this week is tripartite:
1. What part of the pelvis did the excavators think they had unearthed? (That’s what made me smile, because I immediately knew what they were thinking as I was pulling it out of the bag).
2. What is the actual bone?
3. Side it!
And here is an alternate “side” view, for those who like their osteology three-dimensional.
Photos: Photos were taken of collections housed at the most excellent Museo de Jaén.