Forensic science and criminalistics are the two terms used to describe the employment of science in solving crimes and mysteries.  The word forensic comes from the Latin word forum, meaning ‘the market-place’, because this is where judicial trials were carried out in Roman times.  The use of these two terms varies between professions and from country to country.  For example, the American Academy of Forensic Science has a criminalistics department that is involved in the analysis of evidence such as bloodstains, glass and soil. 

Other areas of forensic science include forensic pathology, forensic toxicology, forensic anthropology, forensic dentistry (ondontology), questioned document examination, voice analysis, polygraphs, fingerprinting and ballistics. 

As techniques in analytical chemistry become increasingly advanced, the amount of information that can be gleaned from the tiniest sample grows and grows.

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