Journal article Open Access

Bone spoons for prehistoric babies: Detection of human teeth marks on the Neolithic artefacts from the site Grad-Starčevo (Serbia)

Stefanović, Sofija; Petrović, Bojan; Porčić, Marko; Penezić, Kristina; Pendić, Jugoslav; Dimitrijević, Vesna; Živaljević, Ivana; Vuković, Sonja; Jovanović, Jelena; Kojić, Sanja; Starović, Andrej; Blagojević, Tamara


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    <subfield code="a">Kojić, Sanja</subfield>
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    <subfield code="a">Bone spoons for prehistoric babies: Detection of human teeth marks on the Neolithic artefacts from the site Grad-Starčevo (Serbia)</subfield>
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    <subfield code="a">&lt;p&gt;Around 8000 years ago, throughout the Neolithic world a new type of artefact appeared,&lt;br&gt;
small spoons masterly made from cattle bone, usually interpreted as tools, due to their intensive&lt;br&gt;
traces of use. Contrary to those interpretations, the small dimensions of spoons and&lt;br&gt;
presence of intensive traces of use led us to the assumption that they were used for feeding&lt;br&gt;
babies. In order to test that assumption we compared 2230 marks on three spoons from the&lt;br&gt;
Neolithic site of Grad-Starčevo in Serbia (5800&amp;minus;5450 cal BC) with 3151 primary teeth marks&lt;br&gt;
produced experimentally. This study has shown that some of the marks on spoons were&lt;br&gt;
made by primary teeth, which indicate their usage in feeding babies. The production of a&lt;br&gt;
new type of artefact to feed babies is probably related to the appearance of a new type of&lt;br&gt;
weaning food, and the abundance of spoons indicates that new baby gruels became an&lt;br&gt;
important innovation in prehistoric baby-care.&lt;/p&gt;</subfield>
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