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New Perspectives on the Late Neolithic of South-Western Sweden. An Interdisciplinary Investigation of the Gallery Grave Falköping Stad 5

Journal article
Authors Malou Blank
A. Tornberg
C. Knipper
Published in Open Archaeology
Volume 4
Issue 1
Pages 1-35
ISSN 2300-6560
Publication year 2018
Published at Department of Historical Studies
Pages 1-35
Language en
Keywords subsistence, mobility, health, Scandinavian Late Neolithic, south-western Sweden, isotopes, osteology, nitrogen isotope ratios, eastern central sweden, lactase-persistence, strontium isotopes, bronze-age, chronological distribution, collagen, extraction, enamel hypoplasias, cribra-orbitalia, bone-collagen, Archaeology
Subject categories Archaeology


This article presents the results of an interdisciplinary study combining archaeology, osteology, and stable isotope analyses. The geological conditions and richness of megalithic graves in Falbygden is suitable for studies of Neolithic human remains. Nevertheless, the Late Neolithic period (2350-1700 BC) is poorly investigated. This paper explores new knowledge of the Late Neolithic megalithic population in Falbygden. In-depth osteological and archaeological studies focusing on a single gallery grave (Falkoping stad 5) were conducted. Radiocarbon dating and carbon, nitrogen, and strontium isotope analyses of teeth from twenty-one individuals revealed the time of the grave's use, as well as the subsistence and mobility practices of the buried individuals. The grave was already in use during the first part of the Late Neolithic and used into the second part of the period by individuals of different origin. Furthermore, the results indicated changing population dynamics in the Late Neolithic Falbygden, with increased human mobility, variability in subsistence strategies, and growing population density.

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