Project Status: Active – The project has reached a stable, usable state and is being actively developed. Coverage Status CRAN_Status_Badge license


With mortAAR you can calculate a life table based on archaeological demographic data. You just need the number of people of a certain age, but you can also use single individual data. mortAAR allows to separate the data according to sex/location/epoch or any other grouping variable.

What is a life table [aka discrete time survival analysis]? According to Chamberlain it is a

“(…) mathematical device for representing the mortality experience of a population and for exploring the effects on survivorship of age-specific probabilities of death. One reason why life tables have been ubiquitous in demography is that mortality cannot easily be modelled as a single equation or continuous function of age.”

To our knowledge as of writing, a simple to use and easily accessible tool to calculate and create archaeological life tables has been lacking. That is why we sat down and put mortAAR for R together. We hope it will be of use for archaeologists world-wide.

In our view, mortAAR shines in the following areas:

For further information, please have a look at the Vignettes – Basic usage, Extended discussion, Life table correction and Reproduction – and the Manual.


mortAAR is available on CRAN and can be installed through install.packages("mortAAR"). You can also install the development version with:

if(!require('remotes')) install.packages('remotes')
remotes::install_github('ISAAKiel/mortAAR', build_vignettes = TRUE)


mortAAR is released under the GNU General Public Licence, version 3. Comments and feedback are welcome, as are code contributions.