Amy Styring

Dr Amy Styring

Postdoctoral Research Assistant, The Agricultural Origins of Urban Civilization project

Institute of Archaeology
36 Beaumont St, Oxford, OX1 2PG

Tel: +44 (0)1865 288014

Fax: +44 (0)1865 278254


Research Interests

Archaeological chemistry; carbon and nitrogen isotope analysis; palaeodietary studies; Neolithic archaeology; early farming practice and land use in Europe and western Asia; strontium isotopes; ancient landscape use

Primary Geographic area

Western Asia and Europe

Current Activities/Projects

As a 3-year post-doctoral research assistant on The Agricultural Origins of Urban Civilisation (AGRICURB) project, I am developing and refining isotopic approaches to reveal past crop growing conditions and land management practices.  Isotopic ratios of carbon, nitrogen and strontium have the potential to provide insights into how and where crops were grown. This will help us to better understand the relationship between early farming practice and social change, in particular with the emergence of urbanism.


Journal Articles


Styring, A., Maier, U., Stephan, E., Schlichtherle, H. and Bogaard, A. (2016) Cultivation of choice: new insights into farming practices at Neolithic lakeshore sites. Antiquity, 90, 95-110.

Styring A., Ater, M., Hmimsa, Y., Fraser, R., Miller, H., Neef, R., Pearson J. and Bogaard A. (2016) Disentangling the effect of farming practice from aridity on crop stable isotope values: A present-day model from Morocco and its application to early farming sites in the eastern Mediterranean. The Anthropocene Review, 3, 2-22.


Styring, A., Fraser, R., Arbogast, R-M., Halstead, P., Isaakidou, V., Pearson, J.A., Schäfer, M., Triantaphyllou, S., Valamoti, S.M., Wallace, M., Bogaard, A. and Evershed, R.P., (2015), Refining human palaeodietary reconstruction using amino acid d15N values of plants, animals and humans. Journal of Archaeological Science, 53, 504-515.

Bogaard A., Hodgson J., Nitsch E., Jones G., Styring A., Diffey C., Pouncett J., Herbig C., Charles M., Ertug F., Tugay O., Filipovic D. and Fraser R. (2015) Combining functional weed ecology and crop stable isotope ratios to identify cultivation intensity: a comparison of cereal production regimes in Haute Provence, France and Asturias, Spain. Vegetation History and Archaeobotany, 1–17.


Styring, A., Fraser, R., Bogaard, A. and Evershed, R.P., (2014), The effect of manuring on cereal and pulse amino acid d15N values. Phytochemistry, 102, 40-45.

Styring, A., Fraser, R., Bogaard, A. and Evershed, R.P., (2014), Cereal grain, rachis and pulse seed amino acid d15N values as indicators of plant nitrogen metabolism. Phytochemistry, 97, 20-29.


Styring, A., Manning, H., Fraser, R., Wallace, M., Jones, G., Charles, M., Heaton, T., Bogaard, A. and Evershed, R.P, (2013), The effect of charring and burial on the biochemical composition of cereal grains: Investigating the integrity of archaeological plant material. Journal of Archaeological Science, 40, 4767-4779.

Fraser, R., Bogaard, A., Charles, M., Styring, A., Wallace, M., Jones, G., Ditchfield, P. and Heaton, T., (2013), Assessing natural variation and the effects of charring, burial and pre-treatment on the stable carbon and nitrogen isotope values of archaeobotanical cereal and pulse remains, Journal of Archaeological Science, 40, 4754-4766.

Bogaard, A., Fraser, R.A., Heaton, T.H.E., Wallace, M., Vaiglova, P., Charles, M., Jones, G., Evershed, R.P., Styring, A.K., Andersen, N.H., Aerbogast, R.-M., Bartosiewicz, L., Gardeisen, A., Kanstrup, M., Maier, U., Marinova, E., Ninov, L., Schäfer, M. and Stephan, E. , (2013), Crop manuring and intensive land management by Europe's first farmers, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 110 (31):, 12589-12594


Styring, A., Kuhl, A., Knowles, T., Fraser, R., Bogaard, A. and Evershed, R. (2012) Practical considerations in the determination of compound-specific amino acid δ15N values in animal and plant tissues by gas chromatography-combustion-isotope ratio mass spectrometry, following derivatisation to their N-acetylisopropyl esters. Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry, 26, 2328-2334.


Fraser R., Bogaard A., Heaton T., Charles M., Jones G., Christensen B., Halstead P., Merbach I., Poulton P., Sparkes D. and Styring A. (2011) Manuring and stable nitrogen isotope ratios in cereals and pulses: towards a new archaeobotanical approach to the inference of land use and dietary practices. Journal of Archaeological Science, 38, 2790-2804.


Styring A., Sealy J. and Evershed R. (2010) Resolving the bulk δ15N values of ancient human and animal bone collagen via compound-specific nitrogen isotope analysis of constituent amino acids. Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, 74, 241-251.


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