What this skeleton told us: Evidence
An older person tentatively identified as a woman because of the skeleton being rather fragmentary, this person was 162 cm tall (5 feet 4 inches). Tooth decay and plaque are evident on the teeth, and there is an infected tooth root and tooth loss during life, as well as dental, and thinning (enamel defects, or hypoplasia). There is some trace of osteoarthritis in one of the joints of the 4th right toe.
Interpretation of the evidence
In Anglo-Saxon Britain, if a woman survived childhood, she could be expected to live into middle-age, provided she maintained good health and did not die during pregnancy or childbirth. This woman was above average height for this period and exceeded her life expectancy, and this indicates that she was well-nourished and, apart from some minor ‘wear and tear’ to one toe joint, in good health. However, we should remember that humans are very good at adapting to challenging times! In common with many of the people buried at the Bowl Hole, dental hygiene appears to have been a problem for this woman. She probably had bad breath, and might have had pain from dental infection. Her tooth decay suggests sugar in her diet, and her enamel hypoplasia illustrates that in childhood she had a deficient diet or disease.
Swolen with emotion angered or enraged.