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Victims of Ireland'S Great FamineThe Bioarchaeology of Mass Burials at Kilkenny Union Workhouse$
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Jonny Geber

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780813061177

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813061177.001.0001

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A Life Endured in Poverty

A Life Endured in Poverty

A Social Bioarchaeology of the “Deserving Poor”

(p.59) 3 A Life Endured in Poverty
Victims of Ireland'S Great Famine

Jonny Geber

University Press of Florida

Relatively little is known about the lives of the poor in Ireland during the nineteenth century. Bioarchaeological analysis of skeletal remains from the Kilkenny Union Workhouse mass burials indicate that they are of average stature compared to contemporaneous skeletal populations in Ireland, Britain, and North America. The paleopathological analysis reveals that many suffered from dental disease and joint pain, and trauma frequencies appear slightly higher compared to other nineteenth-century population groups. A high frequency of clay-pipe facets in both adult male and female dentitions reveals that many were smokers, and this may be a reflection of their social class.

Keywords:   bioarchaeology, clay pipe, dental disease, Kilkenny Union Workhouse, mass burials, pain, poverty, smoking, stature, trauma, social class

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