Adrian Balasescu

Adrian Balasescu
Romanian Academy · Institute of Archaeology "Vasile Pârvan"

PhD
Zooarchaeology in Romania

About

231
Publications
81,405
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2,548
Citations
Citations since 2016
116 Research Items
1926 Citations
20162017201820192020202120220100200300
20162017201820192020202120220100200300
20162017201820192020202120220100200300
20162017201820192020202120220100200300
Introduction
I am a zooarchaeologist at the Institute of Archaeology "Vasile Pârvan" Bucuresti, Romania. I have participated in various research teams at numerous archaeological excavations (Romania, France and Armenia), being responsible mainly for the archaeozoological investigation. My background is in Balkan prehistory.
Additional affiliations
June 2017 - present
Romanian Academy
Position
  • Senior Researcher
Description
  • Zooarchaeology
September 2014 - May 2017
Muzeul Naţional de Istorie a României
Position
  • Senior Researcher
April 1997 - August 2014
Muzeul Naţional de Istorie a României
Position
  • Researcher
Education
October 2006 - June 2010
Romanian Academy
Field of study
  • History - Archaeology
October 1997 - March 2003

Publications

Publications (231)
Article
Full-text available
The house mouse (Mus musculus) represents the extreme of globalization of invasive mammals. However, the timing and basis of its origin and early phases of dispersal remain poorly documented. to track its synanthropisation and subsequent invasive spread during the develoment of complex human societies, we analyzed 829 Mus specimens from 43 archaeol...
Article
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The territory situated to the north of the Lower Danube represents the ideal space for observing the interaction between local communities, local environment and newcomers who arrived here at the beginning of the 3rd millennium BC. Thousands of burial mounds and relatively few flat graves present an array of common or exceptional inventories, indic...
Article
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Present-day domestic cattle are reproductively active throughout the year, which is a major asset for dairy production. Large wild ungulates, in contrast, are seasonal breeders, as were the last historic representatives of the aurochs, the wild ancestors of cattle. Aseasonal reproduction in cattle is a consequence of domestication and herding, but...
Article
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Domestication of horses fundamentally transformed long-range mobility and warfare¹. However, modern domesticated breeds do not descend from the earliest domestic horse lineage associated with archaeological evidence of bridling, milking and corralling2–4 at Botai, Central Asia around 3500 bc³. Other longstanding candidate regions for horse domestic...
Article
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In European and many African, Middle Eastern and southern Asian populations, lactase persistence (LP) is the most strongly selected monogenic trait to have evolved over the past 10,000 years1. Although the selection of LP and the consumption of prehistoric milk must be linked, considerable uncertainty remains concerning their spatiotemporal configu...
Article
A B S T R A C T We report here on the 2019 discovery of an Upper Palaeolithic female figurine at the open-air site of Piatra Neamt; in the Bistrit;a valley, Romania. This figurine, the first ever to be discovered in Romania, was found in an area in which Palaeolithic figurative art is extremely poorly represented and such figurines are absent. We s...
Chapter
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L’étude archéozoologique de la zone 2 de Taraschina montre que l’élevage – principalement bovin et caprin – aurait joué un rôle primordial. Au fil de la séquence chrono-stratigraphique, on observe que l’importance de bovins augmente alors que celle des caprinés décroit. Le cochon – animal domestique élevé plus spécifiquement pour la consommation –...
Article
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The archaeozoological material discussed in this article came from one feature (Cpl. 2) located in the southern outer courtyard of the fortress investigated in the summer of 2020. The collected artefacts date mainly to the 18th and 19th centuries, therefore to the Austrian era, although some of them had been in use even earlier during the 17th cent...
Chapter
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La néolithisation de la zone située à l’est des Carpates s’opère durant la première moitié du 6e millénaire avant notre ère. Si la documentation archéologique s’y rapportant se concentre pour l’essentiel au nord-est de la Roumanie (départements de Iaşi et de Vaslui), on observe cependant la présence de nombreux habitats appartenant à la culture Sta...
Article
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Dogs are among the most variable species today, but little is known about the morphological variability in the early phases of their history. The Neolithic transition to farming may have resulted in an early morphological diversification as a result of changes in the anthropic environment or intentional selection on specific morphologies. Here, we...
Article
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Romanian territory represents a key point in the dispersal of domestic pigs into Europe, due to its geographical position. Our study gathers a high number of samples from different archaeological sites on Romanian territory in order to establish a more accurate chronological view of the spread of domestic pig into Europe and to investigate the poss...
Book
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Scopul prezentei lucrări este de a rediscuta ansamblul arheologic din materii dure animale provenit din cercetările arheologice efectuate de S. Marinescu-Bîlcu și Al. Bolomey între anii 1970-1974 și 1979-1985, în așezarea de la Drăgușeni-Ostrov, aparținând culturii Cucuteni. Ansamblul analizat cuprinde doar piesele păstrate în colecția Institutului...
Article
We investigated the controversial origin of domestic sheep (Ovis aries) using large samples of contemporary and ancient domestic individuals and their closest wild relatives: the Asiatic mouflon (Ovis gmelini), the urial (Ovis vignei) and the argali (Ovis ammon). A phylogeny based on mitochondrial DNA, including 213 new cytochrome‐b sequences of wi...
Article
Full-text available
Located in southwestern Romania in the Iron Gates Gorges, Icoana was among the sites submerged foiiowing the building of the Iron Gates I dam and hydro-power station. Eight trenches were excavated with a total area of 91m2 and a maximum depth ofca. 3 m between 1967 and 1969. According to the AMS 14C dates, Icoana saw two occupations, one between ca...
Chapter
Full-text available
Located in southwestern Romania in the Iron Gates Gorges, Icoana was among the sites submerged following the building of the Iron Gates I dam and hydro-power station. Eight trenches were excavated with a total area of 91m2 and a maximum depth of ca. 3 m between 1967 and 1969. According to the AMS 14C dates, Icoana saw two occupations, one between c...
Chapter
Full-text available
The 2001-2004 archaeological excavations at Chitila-Fermă (Bucharest, Romania) uncovered features and archaeological materials attributed to 4th century BC-1st century AD and the 2nd-5th centuries AD. To the 2nd-5th centuries AD were assigned a few osseous items interpreted by V. Boroneanţ as bearing the remains of an ancient form of writing. This...
Chapter
In this study we have identified 33 taxa belonging to various classes of animal: mollusks, fish, reptiles, birds and mammals. The mammals dominate with 97.6% of the total remains, evidence of their importance for the Neolithic community at Aknashen. Among the mammals, the domestic animals are preponderant, which is evidence that animal husbandry wa...
Article
The present phylogeographic pattern of red deer in Eurasia is not only a result of the contraction of their distribution range into glacial refugia and postglacial expansion, but probably also an effect of replacement of some red deer s.l. mtDNA lineages by others during the last 50 000 years. To better recognize this process, we analysed 501 seque...
Article
Zusammenfassung In Desa sind in den Bereichen Castravița und Lunculița zwei Latène-Nekropolen gefunden worden. Die Nekropole in Desa-Castravița ist die erste Nekropole der Mittel- und Spätlatène-Zeit in der Region des Eisernen Tores, für die menschliche und tierische Überreste paläoanthropologisch und archäozoologisch analysiert worden sind. Mensch...
Chapter
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The fauna from Milcovu din Deal associated with the Dudești and Vădastra levels is another sample that allows us to observe the characteristics of the animal palaeoeconomy of the Neo-Eneolithic in Oltenia. The increased fragmentation caused by human interventions (defleshing and disarticulation), as well as some complex taphonomic processes, led to...
Article
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Rezumat: În urma cercetărilor arheologice de salvare de la Techirghiol Dealul Minerva - Paloda din cursul anului 2020, realizate de o echipă de arheologi de la Muzeul de Istorie Națională și Arheologie Constanța, au fost descoperite și numeroase resturi faunistice. În acest studiu prezentăm analiza preliminară a resturilor faunistice de mamifere, p...
Article
Full-text available
The 2001– 2004 archaeological excavations at Chitila-Fermă (Bucharest, Romania) uncovered features and archaeological materials attributed to 4th century BC– 1st century AD and the 2nd– 5th centuries AD. To the 2nd– 5th centuries AD were assigned a few osseous items interpreted by V. Boroneanț as bearing the remains of an ancient form of writing. T...
Article
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Rescue archaeological excavations at Sisești Street, nos. 147–175 led to the identification and investigation of 29 archaeological features dated to the Bronze Age, the 9th and the 18th centuries. The paper discusses in detail the results of the research (archaeological materials and features) from an interdisciplinary perspective. It also raises t...
Article
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Lucrările de implementare a proiectului BRUA au impus și realizarea evaluării arheologice a traseului magistralei pentru gaze naturale și, apoi, implicit, în funcție de situații, a cercetărilor arheologice preventive. În cele ce urmează, ne vom opri asupra unor rezultate punctuale din zona de traseu BRUA din centrul județului Giurgiu – Mirău (com....
Article
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Abstract: The faunal material studied in this paper comes from the systematic archaeological researches carried out between 2001-2007 by the archaeologists from the Ialomița County Museum in La Movile point near Săveni village, Ialomița County. A number of 2368 faunal remains from the two archaeological levels of the Cernavodă I culture were analyz...
Article
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Aim: The Expansion-Contraction model has been used to explain the responses of species to climatic changes. During periods of unfavourable climatic conditions, species retreat to refugia from where they may later expand. This paper focuses on the palaeoecology of red deer over the past 54 ka across Europe and the Urals, to reveal patterns of change...
Chapter
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The settlement of Godedzor is located at 1,800 m asl in the region of Syunik (south-eastern Armenia). Previous studies have highlighted the strategic position of the site in connection to both east to west and north to south routes of communication and in relation to the proximity to the main obsidian outcrops of the region. Excavations at Godedzor...
Conference Paper
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La faune étudiée, peu nombreuse, puisqu'elle ne comprend que 493 vestiges, provient de deux complexes archéologiques (C8 et C9) où ont été mélangés avec des restes humains. La faune n’est représentée que par des mammifères qui sont extrêmement brûlés et qui sont d’une couleur blanche. L'étude archéozoologique révèle l'existence uniquement d’animaux...
Article
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The tell settlement from “Măgura Gumelnița” is the eponymous site of the Eneolithic civilization with the same name. It is probably the most significant tell settlement north of the Danube, and it belonged to the Kodjadermen ‐ Gumelnița ‐ Karanovo VI cultural complex that occupied the Balkan area in the second half of 5th millennium BC. During 2018...
Article
Full-text available
The archaeozoological study carried out in Satu Nou-Valea lui Voicu (Oltina, Constanța County) provides new information on the relationship between humans and dogs in the early period of the Iron Age. Thus, numerous bones from several dogs (Canis familiaris) were identified in the feature called "ditch or gully" and in a pit (Pit 41). The authors o...
Article
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Entre 1952 et 1961, Dumitru Berciu réalise de nombreuses recherches de terrain dans la zone littorale du lac Golovița, sur la zone des communes actuelles de Baia et de Ceamurlia de Jos (département de Tulcea). Il publiera en 1966 une partie des fouilles conduites sur les habitats de Baia-Golovița et Ceamurlia de Jos. Dans le même intervalle de temp...
Article
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Rezumat: Cercetările arheologice sistematice efectuate în situl pluristratificat de la Săveni-La Movile (județul Ialomița) au permis evidențierea, printre altele, a două niveluri de locuire eneolitice aparținând culturii Cernavodă I. În cuprinsul acestora, pe lângă inventarul obișnuit, au fost descoperite și șase fragmente ceramice cucuteniene, dat...
Article
Full-text available
Rezumat: Studiul arheozoologic al faunei de mamifere din nivelul Boian Spanțov descoperit în secțiunea C a tell-ului de la Hârșova ne relevă că această populație preistorică se ocupa cu creșterea animalelor, în special a bovinelor și a ovicaprinelor. Vârstele de sacrificare în cazul bovinelor ilustrează o exploatare mixtă (atât pentru carne, cât și...
Article
Entre 1952 et 1961, Dumitru Berciu réalise de nombreuses recherches de terrain dans la zone littorale du lac Golovița, sur la zone des communes actuelles de Baia et de Ceamurlia de Jos (département de Tulcea). Il publiera en 1966 une partie des fouilles conduites sur les habitats de Baia-Golovița et Ceamurlia de Jos. Dans le même intervalle de temp...
Article
Full-text available
The faunal materials preserved from the Eneolithic tell-settlement of Căscioarele Ostrovel were an important source of information that contributed to the characterization of the animal paleo-economy of this site, as well as of the animal bone industry. In this presentation we analyse from a techno-functional point of view a series of dog mandibles...
Article
Full-text available
Human skeletal remains of at least three individuals were unearthed during excavations at the Early Neolithic site of Grumăzeşti-Deleni in northeast Romania (Moldova region) between 1968 and 1978. They comprise the articulated skeleton of an adult buried in a crouched position (M1), and the disarticulated remains of another adult and a juvenile fou...
Article
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Two horses were uncovered at Negrileşti, laid in a pit (feature 22) within the Noua settlement, towards its eastern limit. The archaeological investigations uncovered the burial of two horses, whose skeletons were relatively complete. The animals were placed facing one another, lying on their left side (Horse 1), respectively on their right side (H...
Article
Full-text available
Archaeological evidence indicates that pig domestication had begun by ∼10,500 y before the present (BP) in the Near East, and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) suggests that pigs arrived in Europe alongside farmers ∼8,500 y BP. A few thousand years after the introduction of Near Eastern pigs into Europe, however, their characteristic mtDNA signature disapp...
Article
Full-text available
Archaeological evidence indicates that pig domestication had begun by ∼10,500 y before the present (BP) in the Near East, and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) suggests that pigs arrived in Europe alongside farmers ∼8,500 y BP. A few thousand years after the introduction of Near Eastern pigs into Europe, however, their characteristic mtDNA signature disapp...
Article
Full-text available
Archaeological evidence indicates that pig domestication had begun by ∼10,500 y before the present (BP) in the Near East, and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) suggests that pigs arrived in Europe alongside farmers ∼8,500 y BP. A few thousand years after the introduction of Near Eastern pigs into Europe, however, their characteristic mtDNA signature disapp...
Chapter
Full-text available
Schela Cladovei is one of the most important Mesolithic–Neolithic sites in Southeast Europe. The range of archaeological materials recovered from this site in over five decades of archaeological investigation is considerable, yet very few details have been published. In this paper we review the osseous assemblage from the first three seasons of exc...
Article
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The present study presents the investigations of some osteological assemblages from the deposits of the Museum of Dacian and Roman Civilisation, Deva, and the National Museum of Transylvanian History. Chronologically, the materials belong to contexts from the final stage of the Early Iron Age (EIA) and, possibly, to the period of the early La Tène...
Article
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This paper focuses on the identification of changes in the processing of osseous materials in the southeast European Neolithic, beginning with three types of production by manufacture wear technique typical for the region: bipartition by abrasion, segmentation with fibre and perforation by wear technique. The processing of osseous materials is stro...
Article
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Near Eastern Neolithic farmers introduced several species of domestic plants and animals as they dispersed into Europe. Dogs were the only domestic species present in both Europe and the Near East prior to the Neolithic. Here, we assessed whether early Near Eastern dogs possessed a unique mitochondrial lineage that differentiated them from Mesolith...
Article
Full-text available
The goal of the present paper is to make known an extremely interesting archaeological assemblage of the Vădastra culture, discovered during archaeological research carried out at Măgura ‘Buduiasca’ settlement. The methodology used aimed to identify the operational schemes used for the manufacture of different typological categories, and to find in...
Article
Full-text available
Zooarchaeological study of the faunal remains unearthed at Radovanu during the 2016 field season from three pits (P.1, P.7 and P.8), revealed the presence of dog bones displaying traces of anthropogenic disarticulation, defleshing and burning. Of the 68 dog skeletal remains, 20 exhibit such anthropogenic traces. The minimum number of individuals (M...
Article
Full-text available
Zooarchaeological study of the faunal remains unearthed at Radovanu during the 2016 field season from three pits (P.1, P.7 and P.8), revealed the presence of dog bones displaying traces of anthropogenic disarticulation, defleshing and burning. Of the 68 dog skeletal remains, 20 exhibit such anthropogenic traces. The minimum number of individuals (M...
Article
Full-text available
The tell settlement from “Măgura Gumelnița” is the eponymous site of the Eneolithic civilization with the same name. It is probably the biggest tell settlement North of the Danube, and it belonged to the Kodjadermen ‐ Gumelnița ‐ Karanovo VI civilization that occupied in the Balkan area in the second half of 5th millennium BC. In 2017, a complex in...
Article
Full-text available
In the present article we explore the possibilities of reconstructing social behaviour through a detailed analysis of the so-called ‘ashmounds’ of the Late Bronze Age in Eastern Europe, starting from new research at a settlement of the Noua culture, Rotbav in south-eastern Transylvania. For the first time, the excavations comprised not only the ‘as...
Chapter
Full-text available
The short and small-scale excavation at Răzvrata (Romania) in the Iron Gates revealed the traces of two houses, a hearth, portable artefacts and faunal remains. This paper presents a detailed account of the Mesolithic faunal collection, in the context of other studied assemblages from the Mesolithic Iron Gates sites. Although limited, the resulted...
Article
Full-text available
Located in southwestern Romania in the Iron Gates Gorges, the Mesolithic site at Icoana was submerged during construction of the Iron Gates I dam and hydro-power station. Vasile Boroneanț briefly investigated the site from 1967 until it was completely flooded, in 1969. Based on recent AMS 14C dates, Icoana was occupied during the Middle Mesolithic...
Chapter
Full-text available
Data on Early Iron Age at Lower Danube have substantially grown richer following the numerous researches in Babadag culture sites, especially after the ’90s. Identified in Dobrudja, eastern Walachia and south-eastern Moldavia, Babadag culture has ascribed so far over 100 settlements that probably functioned from the end of 11th c. to the first part...