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View Diary: Archaeology in Egypt II: Dakleh and Kharga Oases (photos) (105 comments)

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  •  blue jersey mom, where did the rest of the (4+ / 0-)

    animal bones go?  I'm assuming that the heads and feet were just discarded as part of the butchering process (which seems wasteful to me, but I'm guessing all around here.)  So then they'd eat the meat off the other bones and...what?  Do cooked bones deteriorate to such a condition that they disappear?  Did they eat the bones?  Turn them into utensils and vessels?  Where did they go?

    "The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places." Ernest Hemingway

    by Got a Grip on Sun Jan 23, 2011 at 05:06:54 PM PST

    •  I think that the head and feet were (6+ / 0-)

      separated from the meaty parts early in the butchery process. I do have some meatier elements in the material I identified last year, but I suspect that a lot of the meaty bones were tossed out with the trash. they may well have been eaten by dogs and foxes.

      •  Ahhh. That makes sense, (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        blue jersey mom, Ojibwa

        but leads me to a couple of other questions.  Where did their trash go?  Did they cart it off far away, or do you find trash disposal sites nearby?  Also, why would the dogs and foxes eat just the cooked bones but not the heads and feet?  My experience with butchering on the farm with domesticated dogs and the wild equivalents around was that they all love whatever gets discarded.

        Sorry if I'm asking too many questions.  I find this fascinating.

        "The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places." Ernest Hemingway

        by Got a Grip on Sun Jan 23, 2011 at 05:25:44 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  These are great questions. (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          musing85, Jay C, Got a Grip, Ojibwa

          The dogs will get anything that is lying around uncovered, but things that are buried quickly (and the sand is always burying things in Dakleh) will survive quite well. Sometimes garbage is used as fertilizer. I suspect that these head and foot bones were in a place where the dogs and foxes could not get to them.

          •  Thanks! This gives much to ponder. (2+ / 0-)
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            blue jersey mom, Ojibwa

            I forgot for a moment where we were talking about and that the sand would be a moving, almost living thing in that location.  And of course they'd want at least some of the garbage for fertilizer.  I wonder if they ground bonemeal out of some of the bones for that purpose?

            I remember coming out of Cairo after you cross the Nile, northish of where you turn to see the pyramids, and there are these immense farm fields in what I'd call bottom land there.  Lots of irrigation ditches and farmers with carts pulled by donkeys.  There were these enormous cabbages growing in the fields at the time I'm thinking of, I believe it was September.  I'd never seen such big cabbages.

            Okay, now I'm just babbling.  Thanks for answering my questions.  Like I said, much to ponder.  :)

            "The world breaks everyone, and afterward, some are strong at the broken places." Ernest Hemingway

            by Got a Grip on Sun Jan 23, 2011 at 05:51:45 PM PST

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