Bone Quiz 13

Today is a great Friday. Not only is it a tolerable 31˚C here in Jaén, but the new materials I’ve requested from the museum storage units won’t get to the museum until Monday afternoon. This means that I get to take a two day weekend, that will no doubt be filled with predictable amounts of excess and debauchery.

It has been a long week, involving sorting, identifying and analyzing around 80 teeth a day, while screening material that looks  like this:

Dry screening

and unpacking insidious little bags that look like this:

DSCN9941in order to find even more teeth. I’ve just hit the 1500 mark, and I’ve only gone through about one third of the material associated with this necropolis. September will be a busy month.

However, today is also a fantastic day because one of my good friends, the illustrious Caroline VanSickle, defended her dissertation on the Neandertal pelvis this morning.  Caroline is heading to University of Wisconsin – Madison, as the first recipient of the Department of Gender and Women’s Studies prestigious Feminist Biology Postdoctoral Fellowship. Over the next two years she’ll be teaching upper-level seminars exploring the intersection of biology and gender, while continuing her research on changes in childbirth anatomy over the course of human evolution. I will miss her constant presence in the osteology and paleoanthropology lab, as well as her invaluable tips on Excel, Word, and the appropriate number of M&Ms to consume in a single afternoon. However, I’m happy that she gets to start her exciting new postdoc so soon!

The lab will miss you, but I will make sure to always keep a bag of peanut butter M&Ms on your desk to honor your memory.

The lab will miss you, but I will make sure to always keep a bag of peanut butter M&Ms on your desk to honor your memory.

Anyhow, partially due to my excitement at all of the good tidings this Friday has brought, and partially due to the 660ml of caffeine I have just imbibed, I’m presenting you with the following FIENDISHLY difficult bone quiz.

While I was sorting through a bag of fragmentary bone today I found a tooth root that had the crown broken off of it as the result of post-mortem damage. However, I gave identifying it a shot anyways, by using the shape and length of the root and the shape of the tiny fragment of crown still visible. I felt vindicated after laying out all of the teeth from that particular bag, because my (now clearly justified) screening methods had also produced both portions of the fractured crown. When I refit them, I realized that my initial identification had been correct. If I can do it, you can too! I’ve oriented one photo as if this were a maxillary tooth, and one photo as if it were a mandibular tooth, so as not to bias your identifications. Without further ado:

1. Permanent or deciduous;

2. Tooth category (Incisor, Canine, Premolar, Molar);

3. Upper or lower;

4. Location in arch (e.g. 1, 2, 3 or 4);

5. Left or right;

Buccal/Labial View – 3 cm Scale 

Lingual View – 3 cm Scale

Lingual view

                  Shape of the occlusal surface at around the level of the CEJ                                                         (lingual half is lower in the photo)


Answers posted after the jump below. Have a great weekend!
Image Credits: All osteological photographs were taken at the Museo de Jaén in summer 2014.











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

3 Responses to Bone Quiz 13

  1. bonediggerjess says:

    My guess – permanent right mandibular canine


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

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