Bone Quiz 11

Mezquita, from across the riverI went to Córdoba last weekend, to meet up with an old friend from fieldwork in Portugal, and, as  it turned out, to unintentionally attend an all-night flamenco festival. I know, I know  – it probably seems like all I do is gallivant around southern Spain, eating tapas, drinking cervezas, and lounging about in the copious Iberian sunlight. However, I’ve been highlighting these sorts of adventures rather than my daily routine, a tendency which glosses over some of the more mundane aspects of bioarchaeological data collection. For example, while the view of the Mezquita, above, is typical of Andalucia’s architectural charms, most days I actually spend my time looking at views like this:

Ah, bones.My one daily respite involves the twenty minutes I stumble blearily upstairs to eat my sandwich and bask in the small square of sunlight decorating the back-building steps of the Museo de Jaén.  Accordingly, any opportunity to wander father afield (e.g., out of the basement) and explore a little bit more of Andalucía is always welcome.

Anyhow, I’ve visited Córdoba twice over the past two summers, and I have noticed that it’s characterized by arches of all kinds, from the great arcing supports of the Roman bridge over the Guadalquivir:
Roman Bridge, Córdoba

to the mesmerizing red and white arches of the Mezquita:

The arches, summer 2013

Walking through the Hypostyle Hall is like wandering through one of M.C. Escher’s fever dreams; the arches lend the Hall an air of architectural infinity, and the mosque seems to expand ever outward as you move through it. I didn’t have time to visit the Mezquita again on this brief trip, but if I ever head to the city again I’ll gladly pay 8€ to spend an hour gawking at its majestic columns.

The long and winding point to this post is that the ubiquitous Córdoban arches reminded me of a specific portion of a bone that I’ve been finding frequently of late. I have a sneaking suspicion that these preserve well archaeologically because they’re so compact and durable – much like Classical Roman bridges in southern Spain. Rather than arching vertically, they arch laterally, but the fragments always have a distinct curvature that is impossible to miss. So, without further ado:

1. Human/Non-Human;

2. Adult/Non-adult;

3. Bone;

4. Name of this portion of the bone;

5. Side.

Lateral View

Lateral View (3cm scale)

Medial View

Medial View (3cm scale)

If you’re stumped, fear not. I’ve devoted an entire post to teaching you how to easily identify and side the fragment above, wherever you may find it. Answers will be posted after the jump shortly.




This entry was posted in Bone Quiz, Osteology, Travel and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Bone Quiz 11

  1. Reblogged this on The Rockstar Anthropologist and commented:
    I really enjoy these bone quizzes! I think this is a great way to test skills, learn new ones, and engage with the material.


  2. Pingback: Palpable Anatomy: How to identify and side an isolated zygomatic process | Bone Broke

  3. Pingback: Bone Broke Year in Review | Bone Broke

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