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UK Fellow, Section H7, Archaeology, elected in 2014

Professor Charlotte Roberts FBA

Studies archaeological human remains; her key research interests are contextual approaches to past human health (palaeopathology); ethical considerations and and human remains; the relevance of past health to contemporary health; evolutionary approaches to the origin and history of infectious diseases; big data projects in palaeopathology; public engagement
Professor Charlotte Roberts FBA profile picture

About this Fellow

A bioarchaeologist, Professor Roberts has a background in archaeology, environmental archaeology and human bioarchaeology. IShe has studied and interpreted human remains from archaeological sites for the past 30 years, and is specifically interested in exploring the interaction of people with their environments in the past through patterns of health and disease (palaeopathology), and especially those health problems that are common today. A State Registered Nurse initially (1975-8), she completed a BA in Archaeological Studies (Leicester - 1979-1982), a MA Environmental Archaeology and Palaeoeconomy (Sheffield - 1983), and a PhD (bioarchaeology/ palaeopathology/ medical history - Bradford 1988). Her nursing background, particularly, has guided mher into taking an holistic approach to past ill health in bioarchaeology, something that was also considered essential in a hospital environment. Understanding why and how people and communities today experience health problems is essential to be able to understand ill health in the past. She does a wide range of public engagement work.



Current post

  • Professor of Archaeology, Durham University

Past Appointments

  • Reader in Archaeology, University of Durham, 2000 - 2004
  • Senior Lecturer in Biological Anthropology, University of Bradford, 1994 - 1999
  • Lecturer in Palaeopathology, University of Bradford, 1989 - 1994
  • Research Assistant in Palaeopathology, University of Bradford, 1983 - 1989
  • Part-time PhD student in Biological Anthropology, University of Bradford, 1983 - 1989
  • Staff Nurse, The Burns Unit, St. Lawrence Hospital, Chepstow, Gwent, 1979 - 1979


Health and disease in Britain: from prehistory to the present day

Charlotte Roberts, Margaret Cox, 2003

The past and present of leprosy

Charlotte Roberts, Mary Lewis, Keith Manchester, 2002

Other Archaeology Fellows

Professor Colin Haselgrove

Later prehistoric societies in Britain and north-west Europe, particularly the adoption and use of coinage, the impact of Roman expansion on Iron Age groups and the character of rural settlement

Professor Nancy Edwards

The archaeology of Wales and Ireland c. AD400-1150; early medieval inscribed stones and stone sculpture and the archaeology of the church; antiquarians and Welsh archaeology

Professor Peter Bellwood

The multidisciplinary reconstruction of prehistoric human migrations across the world and the multiregional development of agricultural societies, with a disciplinary focus on the archaeology of Southeast Asia and Oceania

Professor Simon Keay

The archaeology of ports, commerce, urbanism and cultural change in the early Roman Mediterranean, particularly Italy and Iberia; the application of non-destructive field -techniques to archaeological sites

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