The Catacomb Cultures of the North-West Caspian Steppe: 14C Chronology, Reservoir Effect, and Paleodiet
AuthorShishlina, N. I.
Van der Plicht, J.
Hedges, R. M.
Zazovskaya, E. P.
Sevastyanov, V. S.
Chichagova, O. A.
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CitationShishlina, N. I., van der Plicht, J., Hedges, R. E. M., Zazovskaya, E. P., Sevastyanov, V. S., & Chichagova, O. A. (2007). The Catacomb cultures of the North-West Caspian steppe: 14C chronology, reservoir effect, and paleodiet. Radiocarbon, 49(2), 713-726.
DescriptionFrom the 19th International Radiocarbon Conference held in Keble College, Oxford, England, April 3-7, 2006.
AbstractFor the Bronze Age Catacomb cultures of the North-West Caspian steppe area in Russia, there is a conflict between the traditional relative archaeological chronology and the chronology based on radiocarbon dates. We show that this conflict can be explained largely by the fact that most dates have been obtained on human bone material and are subject to 14C reservoir effects. This was demonstrated by comparing paired 14C dates derived from human and terrestrial herbivore bone collagen. In addition, values of stable isotope ratios (d13C and d15N) and analysis of food remains from vessels and the stomach contents of buried individuals indicate that a large part of the diet of these cultures consisted of fish and mollusks, and we conclude that this is the source of the reservoir effect.