Unit Book J5

Synthetic view / Typology / Samples

Paleo-zoology of Unit J5

James L. Walker – July 2021

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For the most part, excavated animal bones are collected in the field the same way ceramics are collected, i.e. bagged as bones of a distinct q-lot and removed to the house to await analysis by a subject matter expert.

In special cases such as incorporation as grave goods an individual bone is assigned an item number (i or qi) and held in unit storage.

Generally speaking, there were relatively few animal bones excavated in J5, probably because the entire area was ceremonial, not devoted to domestic or commercial activities involving butchering or consumption.

However, there were five sets of animal bones that excavators thought were of special interest:

  1. The bones in i14 were identified as those of a cow buried in a pit.
  2. The bones in i30 were identified as a complete animal leg.
  3. The bones of i33 were identified as a mandible with teeth.
  4. The bones of q 39.1 were identified as those of a rodent. (Each of the above four were stored in the Zooology lab.)
  5. A bone artifact, q381.4, was analyzed and stored as an item.

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