Iron Age Pastoral Nomadism and Agriculture in the Eastern Eurasian Steppe: Implications from Dental Palaeopathology and Stable Carbon and Nitrogen Isotopes

E.M. Murphy, N. Beer, R. Schulting, Y. Chistov, A. Kasparov, M. Pshenitsyna

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    70 Citations (Scopus)
    1666 Downloads (Pure)

    Abstract

    Iron Age societies of the eastern Eurasian steppe are traditionally viewed as nomadic pastoralists. However, recent archaeological and anthropological research in Kazakhstan has reminded us that pastoralist economies can be highly complex and involve agriculture. This paper explores the nature of the pastoralist economies in two Early Iron Age populations from the burial grounds of Ai-Dai and Aymyrlyg in Southern Siberia. These populations represent two cultural groups of the Scythian World - the Tagar Culture of the Minusinsk Basin and the Uyuk Culture of Tuva. Analysis of dental palaeopathology and carbon and nitrogen stable isotopes suggests that domesticated cereals, particularly millet, and fish formed a major component of the diet of both groups. The findings contribute to the emerging picture of the nuances of Early Iron Age subsistence strategies on the eastern steppe.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)2547-2560
    Number of pages14
    JournalJournal of Archaeological Science
    Volume40
    Issue number5
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 01 May 2013

    Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Iron Age Pastoral Nomadism and Agriculture in the Eastern Eurasian Steppe: Implications from Dental Palaeopathology and Stable Carbon and Nitrogen Isotopes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this