Age-at-death assessment using the os pubis and the auricular surface of the ilium: a test on an identified Asian sample


  • A. Schmitt

    Corresponding author
    1. Laboratoire d'Anthropologie des Populations du Passé, UMR 5809 CNRS, Université Bordeaux 1 and Centre d'Anthropologie, UMR 8555-CNRS, Université Paul Sabatier Toulouse, France
    • Laboratoire d'Anthropologie des Populations du Passé, UMR 5809-CNRS, Université Bordeaux 1, Avenue des Facultés, 33 405 Talence Cedex, France.
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This paper reviews the results of blind tests of two morphological methods of age-at-death estimation. These tests were performed on a known age-at-death and sex sample taken from a collection of a Thai population. The first technique is based on the age related changes of the pubic symphysis according to the Suchey-Brooks system, and the other concerns the metamorphosis of the auricular surface of the ilium elaborated by Lovejoy and colleagues. This is the first time that these methods have been tested on skeletal material from Asia. The results indicate that, for both methods, bias and inaccuracy increase with age and true age tends to be underestimated. As a consequence, age-at-death assessment based on these two techniques should be avoided on Asian archaeological series or forensic cases. Copyright © 2004 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.