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Later Stone Age and Iron Age Human Remains from Mlambalasi, Southern Tanzania Open Access


Other title
terminal Pleistocene
Human Remains
Later Stone Age
Iron Age
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Sawchuk, Elizabeth A.
Supervisor and department
Willoughby, Pamela (Anthropology)
Examining committee member and department
Haagsma, Margriet (History and Classics)
Willoughby, Pamela (Anthropology
Garvie-Lok, Sandra (Anthropology)
Department of Anthropology

Date accepted
Graduation date
Master of Arts
Degree level
The Mlambalasi Rock Shelter in the Iringa Region of southern Tanzania has a rich archaeological record that spans the Later Stone Age (LSA), Iron Age, and historic period. Excavations in 2002, 2006, and 2010 yielded fragmentary, commingled human remains from at least four individuals. There are two adults and a juvenile from the same LSA burial context, and another adult from the Iron Age. One middle-aged adult dated to the terminal Pleistocene LSA is potentially small-bodied, similar to the LSA populations from southern Africa. By comparison, the Iron Age individual appears larger and more robust. The skeletons also exhibit various pathological changes, particularly advanced dental wear and carious lesions. This bioarchaeological study presents the osteological findings on these individuals and interprets their context in the rock shelter. This new skeletal sample has great potential to contribute to studies of human variation in sub-Saharan Africa during the terminal Pleistocene and Holocene.
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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File author: Elizabeth Sawchuk
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