The norm in Egypt?
"This is a fabulous study because it is a big population from a known site, and we have all these bodies from people who are relatively lower class," said Salima Ikram, an Egyptologist at American University in Cairo, who was not involved in the study.
But because, in total, archaeologists have unearthed so few ancient Egyptian cemeteries in which the non-elite were buried, it's possible that these backbreaking conditions prevailed across Egypt at the time, Stevens said.
Other research has found that even Egypt's wealthy suffered widespread malnutrition and disease, often living only to age 30.
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