The 4th cemetery of the Smeltė suburb of Klaipėda

Mokslo publikacijos / Scientific publications
Document Type:
Straipsnis / Article
Anglų kalba / English
The 4th cemetery of the Smeltė suburb of Klaipėda
In the Journal:
Historische Archäologie. 2016, no. 1, 1 pdf (13 p.)
Klaipėda; Smeltė.
Summary / Abstract:

LTReikšminiai žodžiai: Smeltė; Klaipėda; Smeltė; Klaipėda; Lithuania.

ENThe article reviews the results of the archaeological, anthropological, and stable isotope analysis of the Smeltė 4th cemetery of Klaipėda, Lithuania (dating to the 19th to early 20th centuries) performed in 2014. The findings of the research were supplemented with the data derived from other historic cemeteries of the Klaipėda Region (former East Prussia, Germany) and the information published in the newspapers of that period. During the archaeological excavations 1 /6 of the former cemetery was examined and 40 graves were uncovered. The dead were buried in accordance with the prevailing East Prussian burial traditions of that time: their heads were orientated westwards; they were buried in wooden coffins, dressed in modest burial clothing; in one case, a book with probably a religious content was found. The anthropological examination revealed that the individuals buried in the Smeltė cemetery had not yet been affected by industrialisation processes. This was illustrated by the death rates which were still high among the youngest members of the community, namely, infants and non-adults. Another decisive argument was the type of diseases: the industrial communities featured a higher number of cholera and typhus victims, whereas the residents of Smeltė mostly featured age-related physical problems and some rather untypical traumatas. The stable isotope analysis was employed to determine the ratio of freshwater and marine resources in their diet as well as to explain the high mortality of infants due to malnutrition. The results acquired were compared with the contemporary nutrition information acquired from different written sources. [From the publication]

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2022-01-28 20:26:11
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