The University of Arizona

14C Dating and Material Analysis of the Lime Burial of Cova de Na Dent (Mallorca, Spain)

Guy De Mulder, Roald Hayen, Mathieu Boudin, Tess van den Brande, Louise Decq, Magdalena Salas Burguera, Damià Ramis, Herlinde Borms, Mark Van Strydonck

Abstract


Lime burials are a characteristic phenomenon of the protohistoric funerary tradition on the Balearic Islands. At Cova de Na Dent, a lime burial has been sampled for analysis. The lime burial was made up of lime and fragmented bones. Six layers were sampled and described in the laboratory according to their color, the consistency of the deposition, and the aspect and quantity of the bone fragments. Bone samples and lime were dated. The lime was analyzed by using petrographic analysis, X-ray diffraction, FTIR spectroscopy, and simultaneous thermal analysis. The results show that the bones were cremated in the presence of crushed rock carbonate. The 14C dates on the lime suggest an earlier chronology for this ritual, starting in the Bronze Age, as generally is accepted.

DOI: 10.2458/56.16944


Keywords


14C-dating; limeburial, cremation; lime analysis

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