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icon Skelett


The skeleton is the passive part of the musculoskeletal system. It supports the body, gives it its shape, protects many organs and stores minerals. It consists of bones and teeth, both of which are mineralised hard tissues. The skeleton of an adult human comprises 212 bones.

Depending on soil conditions, the skeletal remains from archaeological contexts are exposed to diagenetic processes which, in extreme cases, can lead to the complete dissolution of the bones. Moreover, the cremation of dead bodies can significantly influence the preservation. Usually only the inorganic parts, which are highly fragmented and deformed by thermal influences, remain. The anthropological and zoological determination of anatomical positions, the estimation of biological age and sex as well as paleopathological analyses and the collection of metric data provide important sources for biological and culture historic research.

Sample properties

The skeletal remains to be examined should be visible.