Simpson I, Bol R, Bull ID, Evershed RP, Petzke KJ & Dockrill SJ (1999) Interpreting early land management through compound specific stable isotope analyses of archaeological soils. Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry, 13 (13), pp. 1315-1319. https://doi.org/10.1002/%28SICI%291097-0231%2819990715%2913%3A13%3C1315%3A%3AAID-RCM629%3E3.0.CO%3B2-0
Compound specific stable isotope analyses of managed soils using isotope ratio mass spectrometry have been undertaken as a means of determining early land use practices. δ 15N amino acid signals demonstrate differences between manured grassland, unmanured grassland and continuous cereal cultivation under long-term experimental land use control conditions, with δ 15N in hydrophobic amino acids providing the most distinctive signals. Analysis of early modern/medieval and of Bronze age anthropogenic soils from Orkney demonstrates that such signals are retained in archaeological contexts. δ 13C analyses of n- alkanoic acid components of the fossil, Bronze Age, anthropogenic soils suggest a major terrestrial input to these soils, with uniform composition of formation materials. Surficial soils demonstrate the assimilation of isotopically lighter carbon, providing a means of assessing the mobility of the n- alkanoic acids within soils and sediments.
Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry: Volume 13, Issue 13