The impact of the Roman Empire on animal husbandry practices: study of the changes in cattle morphology in the north-east of the Iberian Peninsula through osteometric and ancient DNA analyses

Lídia Colominas, Angela Schlumbaum, Maria Saña

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

© 2013, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. The change in cattle size during the late Iron Age and the Early Roman period is a widely known phenomenon. However, hardly any information is available about this change and its causes in the north-east of the Iberian Peninsula. In order to shed more light on this issue, variations of cattle size and shape through the analysis of Bos taurus remains from ten archaeological sites located in the north-east Iberia and occupied from the middle fifth century bc to the third century ad are examined in this paper. Osteometric postcranial and teeth analyses show a clear change in cattle size and shape during the Romanization period at newly founded sites. This change is documented at all the sites from the Early Roman period. Genetically, authenticated results from a short fragment of the mitochondrial d-loop were obtained from 6 cattle metacarpals out of 33 tested. They affiliate to the main European taurine haplogroup T/T3. The integration of the available data including the archaeological background suggests that the presence of these morphologically different cattle, introduced during the Romanization period, was more pronounced at sites interpreted as villas and trading posts, rather than at cities during the Early Roman period.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-16
JournalArchaeological and Anthropological Sciences
Volume6
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2014

Keywords

  • Ancient DNA
  • Bos taurus
  • Early Roman period
  • Iberian Peninsula
  • Middle Iron Age
  • Osteometry

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'The impact of the Roman Empire on animal husbandry practices: study of the changes in cattle morphology in the north-east of the Iberian Peninsula through osteometric and ancient DNA analyses'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this