Slepchenko S.M.

Archaeoparasitology a new source of reconstruction of migrations of ancient populations: opportunities, results, and prospects

The resilience of intestinal parasite ova to harsh environmental conditions and possibility of identification of many of them down to genus/species with the aid of conventional visual light microscopy make parasites an important source of information on different aspects of life of ancient populations. Of special interest is the study of the phenomenon of parasitoidism aimed at reconstruction of ancient human migrations. Ectoparasites (the head louse) and a range of intestinal parasites of such groups as the helminths, tapeworms, and trematodes can be used as a marker of contacts and/or migration of people. Finding helminth ova in ancient samples collected in territories outside the endemic pockets can be direct evidence of contacts and/or migrations of the ancient population. An example of reconstruction of such migrations is given by, for instance, finding ova of the ascarids and whipworm on the territories of the Far North, mountainous Altai, deserts of the Central Asia etc. A remarkable example of migrations, according to the archaeoparasitology data, is the use of the helminths as a marker of ancient human migrations, with the example of population of the American continent. It is noteworthy that almost a century old archaeoparasitology data find confirmation in the results of modern paleogenetic studies. In the recent decades, there have been review publications concerned with the finds of ova of various parasitic organisms in archaeological sites, many of which consolidated archaeoparasitology materials dealing with specific intestinal parasites, the impact of the parasites on the human evolution and their (viz., parasites and human) coevolution, and spread of the parasitic diseases as a result of climate changes both in ancient and modern times. All the works, without exception, emphasize the importance of archaeoparasitology data for the deeper understanding of these processes. However, although the first works on the reconstruction of migrations from parasitological data were published back in the beginning of the last century, the research works substantiating this approach and demonstrating its viability appeared only early in this century and elucidated biological pre-requisites for the reconstruction of migrations. Therefore, new broad consolidation of the materials on the reconstruction of migrations from the data of archaeoparasitology is motivated not only by the need of reconsideration of already existing and new data, but also by the need of examination and verification of the archaeoparasitology facts in the context of the genetic data, archaeology, anthropology etc.

Keywords: archeoparasitology, migrations, reconstructions, parasitosis, colonization of America, lice, geohelminths, cestodes.


Sleptsova A.V.

The origins of the population of Western Siberia in the Early Iron Age according to odontological data

The results of the study of the dental anthropology complexes of the population of the Sargatka, Gorokhovo and Kashino cultures of the Early Iron Age in Western Siberia are presented. The source base of the study is 490 individuals from burials located in the Tobol, Ishim, Irtysh River regions, as well as on the territory of the Baraba forest-steppe zone. The aim of this study is to reconstruct the origin and processes of the formation of the anthropological composition of the population of the Sargatka, Gorokhovo and Kashino cultures on the basis of new dental anthropological data. Trigonometrically transformed dental trait frequencies were subjected to the principal component analysis. Besides Sargatka, Gorokhovo and Kashino cultures samples, 17 Bronze Age and 27 Early Iron Age dental samples from different region of Eurasia were used for statistical comparison. The results of the statistical comparison may possible to make a several conclusions. The anthropological composition of the Gorokhov population and Sargat groups from the Tobol, Ishim and Irtysh River regions was significantly influenced by diachronic contacts with the descendants of the Andronovo tribes of the Southern Urals, and synchronous relation with the Savromats and Sarmatians of the Southern Urals. The population of the Sargatka culture and the Gorokhovo groups, simultaneously living on the territory of the Tobol River region in the 5th3rd centuries BC significantly different from each other. However, the subsequent close population relation between the Sargatka and Gorokhovo groups and their contacts with the Sarmatians contributed to the convergence of their anthropological composition. In the formation of the anthropological composition of the Sargatka population of Baraba forest-steppe zone the main role belongs to the local Late Bronze groups the Fedorovo Bronze Age population of Western Siberia and their descendants, people of the Irmen culture. The most specific is the anthropological composition of the Kashino population. The specificity of the small group of the Abatsky 3 burial of Kashino culture from the Ishim River region lies in the sharp predominance of the features of the “eastern” dental non-metric complex, which distinguishes this population from the groups of the Bronze Age and the Early Iron Age of Western Siberia and adjacent territories.

Keywords: Western Siberia, Early Iron Age, dental anthropology, Sargatka Ñulture, Gorokhovo Culture, Kashino Culture.