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Title: Osteological analysis of a skeleton with intentional dental modifications, exhumed from Largo do Carmo (17th–18th centuries), Lisbon
Authors: Alves, Rute V. 
Garcia, Susana J. 
Marques, António 
Wasterlain, Sofia N. 
Issue Date: 2016
Project: info:eu-repo/grantAgreement/FCT/5876/147309/PT 
Serial title, monograph or event: Antropologia Portuguesa
Issue: 32/33
Abstract: This paper presents the osteological analysis of a young adult exhumed from the cemetery associated to Igreja do Carmo, Lisbon, Portugal, during the second archaeological intervention in 2010/2011. Although the cemetery had been used between the beginning of the 15th century and 1755 A.D., the archaeological context of the burial allows us to gauge its dating between the 17th and the 18th centuries. The skeleton is distinguished by a cranial morphology suggestive of an African origin and intentional dental modifications. These consist of the removal of both incisal angles of the upper incisors, which corresponds to a practice related to culture, commonly made in sub-Saharan Africa since prehistoric times to the present. A periapical lesion was associated to the maxillary right central incisor that was apparently healthy but modified. The left clavicle showed bone remodelling along the shaft. Five ribs displayed new bone deposition, and the sternal end of the first left rib was deformed and destroyed. The differential diagnosis of the lesions gave rise to several possible pathological conditions, namely, treponematosis and chronic respiratory disease, particularly tuberculosis. Various macroscopic aspects and the geographical context lead us to consider venereal syphilis as the most probable diagnose. Considering that, during the 16th century, Lisbon has become a fundamental part of the intercontinental maritime routes it is not surprising that African people were buried in the cemeteries of Lisbon, allowing us to learn more about their lives and deaths.
DOI: 10.14195/2182-7982_32_4
Rights: embargoedAccess
Appears in Collections:I&D CIAS - Artigos em Revistas Nacionais

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