Dear Maria - The Antiquity article you recommended mentioned heavy fragmentation and surface
features that resulted from high combustion (p. 526). Do you have more specific info on those?
I have an (unpublished) assemblage of heavily burnt bones from North Syria, dating to ca. 1400
BC. In total (but not from the total feature) these weighed ca. 5 kg. The bones ranged from
carbonized to calcined. None were merely charred or blackened. The colors were a very matte
black, bluish-grey, and white. Teeth were a steely glue/grey. They had broken (naturally, I
believe) into pieces of roughly the same size, ca. 2 cm square. The bone surfaces were crazed,
and the cracks were deepening. There were a wide variety of elements, though most were too
fragmented to identify. All of the teeth were identified as juvenile equids. A few post-cranial
bones were identified as equid. All of the post-cranial bones were from large-sized mammals.
When first excavated (in 1999), I had thought these might have been burnt as fuel. In the most
recent excavations, a nearby area had evidence for lime-plaster production, which really makes
me think these were burnt as fuel. I was surprised that whole skeletons – or so it seemed – were