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THE OLDEST RULERS OF EARLY MEDIEVAL BOHEMIA AND RADIOCARBON DATA

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 July 2020

Jan Frolik
Affiliation:
Institute of Archaeology of the CAS, Letenská 4, Prague 11801, Czech Republic
Jiri Sneberger*
Affiliation:
CRL DRD, Nuclear Physics Institute of the CAS, Na Truhlarce 39/64, Prague 18086, Czech Republic Department of the History of the Middle Ages of Museum of West Bohemia, Kopeckého sady 2, Pilsen 30100, Czech Republic Department of Genetics and Microbiology, Faculty of Science, Charles University in Prague, Viničná 5, Prague 2 12843, Czech Republic
Ivo Svetlik
Affiliation:
CRL DRD, Nuclear Physics Institute of the CAS, Na Truhlarce 39/64, Prague 18086, Czech Republic
Sylva Drtikolová Kaupová
Affiliation:
Department of Anthropology, National Museum, Václavské náměstí 68, Prague 1 11579, Czech Republic
Katerina Pachnerova Brabcova
Affiliation:
CRL DRD, Nuclear Physics Institute of the CAS, Na Truhlarce 39/64, Prague 18086, Czech Republic
Zuzana A Ovsonkova
Affiliation:
CRL DRD, Nuclear Physics Institute of the CAS, Na Truhlarce 39/64, Prague 18086, Czech Republic
*
*Corresponding author. Email: sneberger@ujf.cas.cz.

Abstract

Given the nature of medieval artifacts and resulting research requirements, a precise temporal classification is essential. It is especially important for the purposes of medieval archaeology in interpreting archaeological finds/finding situations and identifying them with a historical events or figures, for example, to identify skeletal remains of a known historical figure or to establish a chronological sequence of various cultural and architectural changes within an area. Due to the fact that the uncertainties of radiocarbon (14C) analyses have been decreasing in recent years, the applicability of 14C dating for such purposes is now growing. In this work, we aim to demonstrate the current possibilities of the use of AMS 14C analyses on specific cases and confront the results with other available data. 14C data from skeletal remains of members of the oldest Czech ruling dynasty of the Přemyslids (about 880–1306 AD) were obtained in recent years. Archaeological research conducted in the three oldest churches in the Prague Castle discovered skeletal remains of three members of the second, two members of the fourth and two members of the fifth generation. This case study of the application of 14C data has three parts: i) identification of excavated individuals; ii) demonstration of the application using current AMS-based analysis of 14C on medieval osteological material and tests of our preparation method; iii) contributing to discussion and consulting with other problematical 14C age alteration influenced by diet, age of bone collagen or seasonal variation of 14C activity. The obtained results and the issues arising from them clearly highlight the necessity of a multidisciplinary cooperation in this type of study.

Type
Conference Paper
Copyright
© 2020 by the Arizona Board of Regents on behalf of the University of Arizona

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Footnotes

Selected Papers from the 9th Radiocarbon & Archaeology Symposium, Athens, GA, USA, 20–24 May 2019

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