Preliminary Submicroscopy of a Vertebral Bone Fragment from a Bitinian Tomb of 2nd century BC in Bursa Western Turkey

BOYRAZ D., Hüseyin Savaş B., Akşit i., ŞAHİN M., ŞAHİN D.

Tuba-Ar-Turkish Academy Of Sciences Journal Of Archaeology, no.4, pp.151-158, 2011 (AHCI) identifier


Despite the availability of large amount of information on human bones; little attention has been given to the environmental conditions of bone weathering and preservation. Secondary hydroxyapatite (carbonated hydroxyapatite for primary bone mineral) as the most well known but intriguing constituent of the bone was determined (SEM) in the pore spaces of a Bitinian (2nd century BC) mans vertebral bone fragment as aggregates together with probable amorphous compounds. Unweathered primary microcrystalline hydroxyapatites of the bone structure were also determined by EM indicating resistance to weathering. Organic bodies such as the True Slime Moulds of the Phylum Myxomycota were observed feeding on hydroxyapatite fragments, and secondary minute hydroxyapatite aggregates forming on unnamed elongated mycelia. All these features add up to manifest the alterations that primarily occur in post mortem soil-less environments of bones more independently and freely than in soil media, without being masked by the numerous processes the latter would shelter.