Patrick Randolph-Quinney, Xanthé Mallett, Sue Black

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


Abstract Forensic anthropology can be described as the analysis of human remains for the medicolegal purpose of establishing identity. It is a multidisciplinary endeavor that applies the knowledge of biological anthropology and human osteology to cases where human remains are skeletonized, or where a detailed understanding of the growth and development, morphology, or norms of the human body can assist other disciplines in positive identification. This is achieved through the use of osteobiographical markers, which aid in the determination of four primary characteristics: skeletal age, sex, ancestry, and living stature. These are supplemented by markers of personal identity, which are likely to be specific to an individual, or that may be determined so with varying degrees of statistical certainty. Such markers include both soft and hard tissue traits, some of which are biologically normal but specific to an individual, whereas others are pathological or abnormal, arising as the result of disease, trauma, surgical intervention, or cosmetic/aesthetic alteration.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Title of host publicationWiley Encyclopedia of Forensic Science
Number of pages1
ISBN (Print)9780470061589
Publication statusPublished - 2009

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