March 11th, 2013

Fire damage - Direct vs indirect

Time:  I don't think it affects a lot =P  For my story, in a strange mix of XV and XXI Centuries.
What:  Burned bone with wood.

Now...  this may be a really weird question, I'm doubting how I understand a term...  Please forgive me for not knowing the correct term in English, I'll try to explain it the best I can.

I've been reading a lot of thermal alteration of bone for two reasons, school and a story I'm playing with, and found the terms (in Spanish) "exposición térmica directa" and "exposición térmica indirecta", that in English could be "direct (indirect) thermic exposure" (not really sure about the correct use).

As far as I understood, DIRECT exposure means the bone was exposed directly to the heat source, fire or oven with or without soft tissue -was burnt or roasted-, whilst INDIRECT means the bone was boiled with or without soft tissue.  The problem is that talking with a teacher, he says DIRECT is when the bone does not present soft tissue, and INDIRECT when it has soft tissue.  Boiling (my 'indirect' thinking) is a way of preparing the meat.

And now I don't know what it's the correct meaning of both terms ;_;  Please help clarify this to me.

Been reading Pijoan Aguade, White, Shipman, Ubelaker, between others, about this subject (about taphonomy and burnt/boiled bone in forensic taphonomy), all based on taphonomy experiments on burned and boiled bone.