Animal Teeth in a Late Mesolithic Woman’s Grave, Reconstructed as a Rattling Ornament on a Baby Pouch

Riitta Rainio, Annemies Tamboer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


In one of the Late Mesolithic graves at Skateholm, Sweden, dating from 5500–4800 BC, were buried a woman together with a newborn baby. Altogether 32 perforated wild boar (Sus scrofa) teeth and traces of red ochre pigment were found in this grave as well. These were interpreted by us as a rattling ornament decorating a baby pouch of leather coloured with red ochre. We made an experimental reconstruction and found out that the teeth function well as a rattle when moving the carrier. The reconstruction currently is on display in the European Music Archaeology Project’s travelling exhibition on archaeological instruments.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEXARC journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2018
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Fields of Science

  • 615 History and Archaeology
  • Experimental archaeology
  • Tooth pendants
  • 6131 Theatre, dance, music, other performing arts
  • Sound archaeology
  • History of musical instruments
  • Rattles
  • Music archaeology

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