Associate Professor of Anthropology and National Geographic Explorer Jamie Hodgkins is the lead author of a study gaining worldwide attention, published in the journal Scientific Reports, “An infant burial from Arma Veirana in northwestern Italy provides insights into funerary practices and female personhood in early Mesolithic Europe.” Hodgkins and her team analyzed the remains of an infant discovered in a cave in northwestern Italy in 2017. The study included radiocarbon dating of the bones, DNA and protein analysis, and microscopic examination of the teeth revealing that the baby, who has been nicknamed Neve, was a girl who died some 10,000 years ago at about two months of age. Neve’s remains, however, are exceptional because they survived more than 10,000 years in the ground and still contained enough DNA for the scientists to analyze.
Earliest modern female human infant burial found in Europe
National Geographic, Dec. 14
Mesolithic Grave in Italy Held Remains of Female Infant
Archaeology Online, Dec. 15
PBS, Jan. 8