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Durham University

Department of Archaeology


Publication details for Professor Charlotte Roberts

Lewis, M., Roberts, C.A. & Manchester, K. (1995). A comparative study of the prevalence of maxillary sinusitis in Medieval urban and rural populations in Northern England. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 98(4): 497-506.

Author(s) from Durham


Six hundred sixty-three Medieval individuals from Wharram Percy, a rural settlement in the Yorkshire Wolds, and 1,042 individuals from St. Helen-on-the-Walls, a poor parish in the Medieval city of York, were examined in order to test the hypothesis that maxillary sinusitis would be more prevalent in an urban population due to social and environmental conditions characteristic of an industrialized settlement. The results showed that the individuals from St. Helen-on-the-Walls, living in the urban environment, had a greater prevalence of maxillary sinusitis than the rural population; 39% (106) of the individuals from Wharram Percy had evidence of sinusitis compared to 55% (134) of the individuals from St. Helen-on-the-Walls. It is suggested that this pattern may be attributed to occupation and industrial air pollution in the Medieval city of York.