boar head in archaeology

Submitted by Kathy on 4/25/05 at 11:18 AM. ( )

I am an archaeologist with an odd find: a boar's skull (cranium and mandible), partially modified (cheek teeth and nasal region knocked out, lower canines removed but uppers present despite the lack of maxillae or nasals, etc.) I'm trying to figure out what people could have done with this artifact. It doesn't have any skinning marks on it, so one of my biggest questions is whether it was left fully fleshed or mostly defleshed. What could you do in a prehistoric context to make a pig head last? Smoke it? Salt it? Anything? Suppose you wanted the head with at least some of the hide; is that possible?

Thank you for any insights you have... and iof you have any ideas about Neolithic pig head use!

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Likely a matter of happenstance

This response submitted by George on 4/25/05 at 12:42 PM. ( )

Hollywood often gives the impression that indigenous natives used all sorts of skulls, feathers and skins in their garb, but as you know, most peoples only used animals they regaled or worshiped.

A skull such as this could have been left over from some feast and just found some niche in the environment where mice or circumstance didn't distroy or dissolve it just as the dinosaur bones that left their clues about prehistoric times.

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