On Friday, September 29th, Jelena Marković successfully defended her MA thesis entitled "Health status of the population from the medieval settlement Vinča – Belo brdo".

 ABSTRACT

This paper presents the results of bioarchaeological analysis of human skeletal remains from the medieval necropolis Vinča – Belo brdo. In order to determine health status and dietary habits of this medieval population non specific stress markers (cribra orbitalia, porotic hyperostosis, enamel hypoplasia) and dietary indicators (dental caries, antemortem tooth loss) were observed. A high frequency of cribra orbitalia (83,33%) and porotic hyperostosis (61%) can be a consequence of low quality diet, poor living conditions and a low level of hygiene. A high percentage of enamel hypoplasia indicates that most of the inhabitants suffered some metabolic stress in their childhood, which can also be caused by poor living conditions and insufficient diet. Dental caries is also observed in high frequencies (86%), which is most probably caused by nutrition based on carbohydrates and a low level of oral hygiene. Poor oral hygiene is also the most probable cause of high percentage of antemortem tooth loss (88%). Research results indicate that the population which has been buried on this necropolis had a very poor health status and inadequate nutrition. Based on their poor health status, it can maybe be presumed that this was an agricultural population, with a diet primarily based on products rich in carbohydrates, for example, cereals.