Helena Malmström

Återbesök på Stenålderslokalen Ajvide – variation inom lokalen samt genetiskt- och social släktskap

Archaeogenetic research proven to be a valuable tool for studying population affiliations and patterns of migration in prehistoric populations. However, to move beyond matters of general group identity and to clarify deeper social relations, there has recently been a call to investigate intra-group or intra-site variation. To approach such case relations, well-documented and well-preserved sites are needed. The Stone Age site Ajvide on Gotland provide such unique possibilities. There are 85 burial pits, with a total of 89 well-preserved men, women and children interred at Ajvide. The site shows that these people, associated with the so-called Pitted Ware culture (PWC), practiced varied types of burial rituals. The majority of the burials are “regular” single inhumation graves. There are, however, also double-, triple- , and “package” graves, as well as scattered human remains. A general PWC burial gift practice is detected, although some individuals were buried with” exotic” items. We aim to study the social structure and individual relations at Ajvide using a multi-disciplinary approach where we correlate genetic observations, bioarchaeological data and the archaeological record. By analyzing the genomes and strontium profiles of the buried at Ajvide we will disentangle both general mobility and possible gene genealogies. This will enable a deeper knowledge of kinship and societal structures at large - in one of Europe’s last major hunter-gatherer complexes.
Grant administrator
Uppsala University
Reference number
SEK 4,842,000
RJ Projects