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Stratum plus. 2021. No2

A. A. Kazarnitsky (Saint Petersburg, Russian Federation), Ju. O. Kapinus, A. P. Grigoryev (Samara, Russian Federation)

On the Artificial Deformation of Skulls of Steppe Cultures of the Bronze Age




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Pages: 307-318


Artificial cranial deformation is known among the steppe Bronze Age population. This tradition again pervaded in the steppes of Eastern Europe burials in the first centuries AD after thousands of years. The authors investigate the sagittal contours of deformed skulls using geometric morphometric methods. The skulls from sites located in the Northwest Caspian dated by the Early and Middle Bronze Age have been analysed. In addition, the authors investigated deformed skulls from the northeastern periphery of the Catacomb culture (the Bronze Age) and from the Late Sarmatian sites (Late Antiquity). It has been established that low variation of the occipital-parietal cranial flattening had characterized population of the Yamnaya, Yamnaya-Catacomb and Early Catacomb cultures of the Northwest Caspian. Other type of cranial deformation, more variable, occurred among the population of Vostochnomanychskaya Catacomb culture: neurocranium was increased in height and reduced in length. This tradition was widespread on the southern territories of the Catacomb cultural historical community, it was also observed in its northeastern periphery, but less often and not quite the same. A comparison showed distinct differences between the sagittal contours of the deformed skulls of the Catacomb and Late Sarmatian cultures.


Keywords: steppes of Eastern Europe, Bronze Age, artificial deformation of skulls, geometric morphometrics, craniology, physical anthropology


Information about authors:

Aleksey Kazarnitsky
(Saint Petersburg, Russian Federation). Candidate of Historical Sciences. Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera), Russian Academy of Sciences. Universitetskaya Emb., 3, Saint Petersburg, 199034, Russian Federation; Institute of Physicochemical and Biological Problems in Soil Science of the Russian Academy of Sciences. Institutskaya St., 2/2, Pushchino, 142290, Moscow Oblast, Russian Federation
E-mail: [email protected]
Julia Kapinus (Samara, Russian Federation). Samara State University of Social Sciences and Education. Maxim Gorky St., 65/67, Samara, 443099, Russian Federation
E-mail: [email protected]
Artem Grigoryev (Samara, Russian Federation). Samara State University of Social Sciences and Education. Maxim Gorky St., 65/67, Samara, 443099, Russian Federation
E-mail: [email protected]

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