Monday, December 19, 2005

Not Eating dormice

Carla has mentioned the Dormouse test (by Mary Beard) in her comments on the rabbit posting. Yes, dormice-eating is another one bordering on an urban myth, as per the rabbits. If I was writing a Roman novel I'd deliberately leave out anything about dormouse eating. But I'd put rabbits in just to annoy people who insist they came in during the Norman period and not any earlier ;-)

As to edible dormice bones, it seems they might be bigger than normal mouse bones, but the bones would still be small. It's just these types of bones, along with fish, and birds, that might not get picked up on archaeological excavations unless there is routine sieving going on. And, of course, some soil conditions would zap them anyway.

As a whole, both rabbits and dormice go under the cute animal archaeology category, along with animal (and human) prints on tile.


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