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The earliest dental prosthesis in Celtic Gaul? The case of an Iron Age burial at Le Chêne, France

  • Guillaume Seguin (a1), Emmanuel d'Incau (a2) (a3), Pascal Murail (a2) and Bruno Maureille (a2)

The discovery of an iron pin in place of an upper incisor tooth from a La Tène burial at Le Chêne in northern France may represent one of the earliest examples of a dental implant in Western Europe. The body was that of a young woman who had been buried in a richly furnished timber chamber. The iron pin may have been inserted during life to replace a lost tooth, or before burial to restore the visual integrity of the corpse. The concept of the dental prosthesis may have been taken from the Etruscans by returning Celtic mercenaries, although dental implants of this specific kind have not been found in Etruscan contexts.

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