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        1 2     

  Subjects -> ARCHAEOLOGY (Total: 176 journals)
Abstracta Iranica     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Acta Antiqua     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 14)
Acta Archaeologica     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 175)
Acta Archaeologica Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Advances in Archaeological Practice : A Journal of the Society for American Archaeology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
African Archaeological Review     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 9)
AIMA Bulletin     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Akroterion     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
Altorientalische Forschungen     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
American Antiquity     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
American Indian Culture and Research Journal     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9)
American Journal of Archaeology     Partially Free   (Followers: 27)
Anatolica     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9)
Ancient Asia     Open Access   (Followers: 7)
Ancient Near Eastern Studies     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 18)
Ancient Society     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7)
Annuaire du Collège de France     Open Access  
Annual of the British School at Athens     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 12)
Anthropology & Archeology of Eurasia     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 10)
Antiqua     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Antiquaries Journal, The     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 14)
Antiquite Tardive     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
AntropoWebzin     Open Access  
Apeiron     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Arabian Archaeology and Epigraphy     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 10)
Archaeologia     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9)
Archaeologiai Értesitö     Full-text available via subscription  
Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 13)
Archaeological Dialogues     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 128)
Archaeological Prospection     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 12)
Archaeological Reports     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Archaeologies     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 11)
Archaeology in Oceania     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8)
Archaeology International     Open Access   (Followers: 13)
Archaeology, Ethnology and Anthropology of Eurasia     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 15)
Archaeometry     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 15)
ArcheoArte. Rivista Elettronica di Archeologia e Arte     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Archeological Papers of The American Anthropological Association     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 11)
Archeomatica     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
ArcheoSciences     Open Access   (Followers: 7)
Archiv für Papyrusforschung und verwandte Gebiete     Full-text available via subscription  
Archivo Español de Arqueología     Partially Free  
Arkeos     Open Access  
Arqueología de la Arquitectura     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Artefact : the journal of the Archaeological and Anthropological Society of Victoria     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Asian Journal of Earth Sciences     Open Access   (Followers: 17)
Asian Perspectives     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Australasian Historical Archaeology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5)
Australian Archaeology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 10)
Australian Canegrower     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Azania: Archaeological Research in Africa     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
BABesch - Bulletin Antieke Beschaving     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Boletim do Museu Paraense Emílio Goeldi. Ciências Humanas     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Boletín del Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombino     Open Access  
Britannia     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7)
Bryn Mawr Classical Review     Open Access   (Followers: 19)
Bulletin du centre d’études médiévales d’Auxerre | BUCEMA - Articles     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 8)
Bulletin of the History of Archaeology     Open Access   (Followers: 19)
Cambridge Archaeological Journal     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 165)
Catalan Historical Review     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Chinese Archaeology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Chiron     Full-text available via subscription  
Chronique des activités archéologiques de l'École française de Rome     Open Access  
Complutum     Open Access  
Continuity and Change     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 10)
Deltion of the Christian Archaeological Society     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
digitAR - Revista Digital de Arqueologia, Arquitectura e Artes     Open Access  
Documents d’archéologie méridionale - Articles     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Dotawo : A Journal of Nubian Studies     Open Access  
Economic Anthropology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 2)
Estudios Atacameños     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Estudios de Cultura Maya     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Ethnos: Journal of Anthropology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 136)
Etruscan Studies     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 1)
Études océan Indien     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
European Journal of Law and Economics     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 154)
Evolution of Science and Technology / Mokslo ir technikos raida     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Exchange     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 3)
Frühmittelalterliche Studien     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Geoarchaeology: an International Journal     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 12)
Geochronometria     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 2)
Germanistik     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5)
Greek, Roman, and Byzantine Studies     Open Access   (Followers: 8)
Heritage Science     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Hesperia     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 10)
Hispania Epigraphica     Open Access  
Hortus Artium Medievalium     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
International Journal of Cultural Property     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 12)
International Journal of Heritage in the Digital Era     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 5)
International Journal of Historical Archaeology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 140)
International Journal of Nautical Archaeology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 123)
International Journal of Paleopathology     Partially Free   (Followers: 6)
International Journal of Speleology     Open Access   (Followers: 9)
Internet Archaeology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 11)
INTRECCI d'arte     Open Access   (Followers: 5)
IpoTESI di Preistoria     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
Iranica Antiqua     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7)
Jahrbuch des Deutschen Archäologischen Instituts     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Journal of African History     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 15)

        1 2     

Journal Cover Journal of Archaeological Science
   [134 followers]  Follow    
   Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
     ISSN (Print) 0305-4403 - ISSN (Online) 1095-9238
     Published by Elsevier Homepage  [2563 journals]   [SJR: 1.373]   [H-I: 57]
  • A question of timing: spatio-temporal structure and mechanisms of early
           agriculture expansion in West Africa
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Sylvain Ozainne , Laurent Lespez , Aline Garnier , Aziz Ballouche , Katharina Neumann , Olivier Pays , Eric Huysecom
      Although understanding the emergence of agriculture in West Africa has recently benefited from major advances, the reasons for its fast diffusion south of the Sahara remain to be explained. We propose here a reconstruction of African agriculture expansion built from a spatialization of available archaeological data and associated radiocarbon dates. With this approach, we can show that the initial spread of food production occurred with some specific rhythms. From this structure, we discuss the potential underlying processes. Our work suggests that the spread of agriculture in West Africa cannot be explained by a simple response to an abrupt environmental change at the beginning of the Late Holocene, but rather by a combined climate-culture mechanism. In addition, cord-wrapped roulette-impressed pottery appears to be a good indicator of the expansion of agro-pastoralist populations in Sub-Saharan regions. Our results are also consistent with the assumption of a monophyletic origin of domestic pearl millet in south-western Sahara and strengthen the idea that the first cultivators were Saharan pastoralists.


      PubDate: 2014-08-16T21:15:01Z
       
  • Macroscopic, petrographic and XRD analysis of Middle Neolithic figulina
           pottery from central Dalmatia
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Melissa L. Teoh , Sarah B. McClure , Emil Podrug
      This article focuses on macroscopic, petrographic and X-ray Diffraction (XRD) analyses of figulina pottery from Middle Neolithic (c. 5500–4900 cal BC) villages on the Dalmatian coast of Croatia. Samples were collected from four sites: Smilčić (Zadar), Krivače and Danilo Bitinj (Šibenik) and Pokrovnik (Drniš) to characterize the degree of variation in figulina production between sites and assess if figulina was produced locally or at a single locale in the region. Figulina is of particular interest because it represents a departure from other Neolithic ceramic technologies in pastes, firing, and decoration. This ware is found in small numbers at Middle Neolithic villages, but has parallels in the northern and western Adriatic. Our analyses suggest that this ware was produced within villages with little exchange between sites. Similarities to other regions (Istria, Italy) may indicate a special function or role of this pottery style within Middle Neolithic societies.


      PubDate: 2014-08-16T21:15:01Z
       
  • Size matters. An evaluation of descriptive and metric criteria for
           identifying cut marks made by unmodified rocks during butchery
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Gilliane F. Monnier , Emily Bischoff
      One of the key concerns in human evolution studies is tracing the development of stone tool use by early hominins to acquire meat. It has been suggested that the earliest tools used for this purpose might have been unmodified, naturally sharp rocks. However, it has proven challenging to distinguish marks on bones made by hominins using humanly unmodified rocks (HURs) for butchery, from marks made by natural processes. Here we present the results of a study aimed at comparing marks made by HURs during butchery, versus marks made by the same HURs through simulated natural processes, specifically, the fluvial tumbling of bones with naturally sharp rocks (replicated here using a rock tumbler). The results of this study, in which the lithological effector is held constant while the actor is varied, confirm earlier studies suggesting that many existing categorical attributes do not effectively distinguish between marks made by HURs versus those made by other tools or trampling. However, we also present a novel way of measuring mark depths which shows that marks made by the human actor are much deeper and longer than those made by natural processes. The size of marks, therefore, matters. This knowledge may help us assess the likelihood that marks on bone surfaces may have been produced by natural forces, as opposed to by humans using unmodified rocks for butchery.


      PubDate: 2014-08-16T21:15:01Z
       
  • The colours of rock art. Analysis of colour recording and communication
           systems in rock art research
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Juan F. Ruiz , José Pereira
      Colour recording is a crucial aspect of rock art documentation. In this paper, we evaluate different systems to record the colour of rock art and propose a system to describe and communicate it in a reproducible and non-subjective way. Recording and communication of colour in rock art studies, and in general in archaeology, has been treated as dissociated dimensions. Colour rendition charts incorporated into photographic scenes have been used for recording. This process tries to preserve pictures with colours as close as possible to reality. In addition, the use of subjective terms for description and communication of colour has been replaced by the use of standard colour charts (Pantone, Munsell) that are still based on the naked eye observation of the researcher. During recent years, other systems, such as spectroradiometers, colourimeters or mobile platform apps for recording of colour, have been seen as alternatives. Some of these procedures lack internal corroboration or are useful only for recording or only for communication but not for both purposes. That limitation is a contradiction to the basis of colourimetry, the science of colour. The system proposed in this paper contends with the recording and communication of colour in rock art in a comprehensive, reliable and reproducible way, from digital photographic recording to the final communication of colour in publications.


      PubDate: 2014-08-16T21:15:01Z
       
  • A multi-proxy reconstruction from Lutomiersk–Koziówki, Central
           Poland, in the context of early modern hemp and flax processing
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Piotr Kittel , Błażej Muzolf , Mateusz Płóciennik , Scott Elias , Stephen J. Brooks , Monika Lutyńska , Dominik Pawłowski , Renata Stachowicz-Rybka , Agnieszka Wacnik , Daniel Okupny , Zbigniew Głąb , Aldona Mueller-Bieniek
      During an archaeological investigation at Lutomiersk–Koziówki in central Poland, deposits indicative of an old rettery from the 16th–17th century AD were discovered. The artifacts found in the lacustrine deposits, together with historical sources and radiocarbon dates of organic matter, show that the pond at a local mill was present from ca. AD 1525 to at least AD 1620. The high content of Cannabis and Linum subfossil macro- and micro-remains in the sediment indicate that the pond was most probably used as a rettery for hemp and flax fibre production. Pollen analysis revealed strong deforestation of the local landscape at the beginning of the pond history. Despite high pollution caused by plant retting, species-rich chironomid, cladoceran and diatom communities occupied the pond. Our investigations reveal that the rettery was situated on the artificial channel of a local stream. High abundance of yellow flatsedge (Cyperus flavescens) fruit remains and coprophile beetle subfossils indicate that pond was also used as a watering place for cattle. Decline in the concentration of aquatic invertebrate subfossils, diatoms, aquatic and cultivated plant macrofossils, reveals rapid abandonment of the rettery in the mid-17th century AD. For some time after the basin was a telmatic ecosystem overgrown by sedges and bulrush. The basin was finally filled by a high-energy overbank deposition not later than in the beginning of 19th century AD.


      PubDate: 2014-08-16T21:15:01Z
       
  • Glassy faience from the Hallstatt C period in Poland: a chemico-physical
           study
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Tomasz Purowski , Barbara Wagner , Ewa Bulska , Olga Syta , Piotr Dzierżanowski
      Beads and pin heads made of glassy faience, often decorated with true glass, discovered at seven different cemetery sites in Poland and dated chiefly to the Hallstatt C period (c. 750/700–600 BC), were examined by the LA-ICPMS and EPMA methods. The analysis involved 48 samples from 39 objects. The main objectives were: (i) to characterize the glassy faience in terms of the physical structure and chemical composition of the glass; (ii) to evaluate differences in the chemical composition of the glass forming the glassy faience; (iii) to examine the chemical composition of the true glass in the decoration on objects made of glassy faience. Glassy faience was found to be made of glass and numerous quartz grains, inclusions and gas bubbles. Manifest in the true glass of the decoration were numerous minor inclusions of the colorant, represented mostly by a compound of lead and antimony. Two groups of glass forming glassy faience were distinguished based on the differences in chemical composition: LMMK and LMGGF. The first is characterized by a moderate concentration of K2O (average 2.7%), high Al2O3, Fe2O3 and some trace elements (e.g. B and Ti). The second has a generally lower content, compared to LMMK, of K2O, Na2O, Al2O3, Fe2O3, B2O3 and TiO2, but higher PbO and Sb2O5. True glass LMG contained little K2O, Al2O3, B2O3 and TiO2, but a large amount of PbO and Sb2O5. All of the glasses had a low content of CaO and MgO. LMMK glass was melted using sand and a flux that could not be easily identified (plant ash?), whereas LMGGF and LMG glass used sand and natron. The glassy faience is usually blue and was colored with cobalt compounds. The yellow glass of the decoration was colored with lead antimonate.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2014-08-12T20:53:36Z
       
  • Sourcing sandstone cobble grinding tools in southern California using
           petrography, U–Pb geochronology, and Hf isotope geochemistry
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Margie M. Burton , Adolfo A. Muniz , Patrick L. Abbott , David L. Kimbrough , Peter J. Haproff , George E. Gehrels , Mark Pecha
      Procurement strategies for grinding tool lithic material among mobile societies are thought to rely on opportunistic selection of resources locally available at habitation sites and along migratory routes. In San Diego County, California, non-local appearing quartzarenite cobble handstones were identified in the ground stone assemblages of some hunter-gatherer archaeological sites dating from ca. 7000 years ago. Due to the nature of the cobble material, both natural and cultural processes may have played a role in the spatial distribution of the artifacts recovered by archaeologists. In this study we employ three techniques to investigate the geological origins and source location(s) of the quartzarenite cobbles: thin section petrography, U–Pb geochronology, and Hf isotope geochemistry. Results confirm the Neoproterozoic-lower Paleozoic age of the cobbles, while metamorphism of southern California basement rocks of similar age indicates that the cobbles must have been transported into the area, probably during Eocene times. People collected the cobbles from source locations and carried them at least 4–10 km and possibly farther. We consider the diagnostic value of the three techniques for characterizing resource distributions of sedimentary cobble material and related procurement strategies, and more broadly, their global applicability for sourcing other archaeological materials made of sedimentary and metasedimentary rock.


      PubDate: 2014-08-12T20:53:36Z
       
  • Combining image analysis and modular neural networks for classification of
           mineral inclusions and pores in archaeological potsherds
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Anna Aprile , Giovanna Castellano , Giacomo Eramo
      The approach combining image analysis techniques and artificial neural networks is proposed here for automatic classification of mineral inclusions and pores in archaeological potsherds using optical digital images. Particularly, the automatic identification of quartz, calcareous aggregates and secondary porosity is considered. A collection of both plane and cross polarised light images acquired via a digital camera connected to optical microscopy in transmitted light is used. Images concern Holocene potsherds (8900–4200 years BP) from Takarkori rock shelter archaeological site (SW Libya, Central Sahara). The adopted methodology involves different phases. Firstly, image segmentation is carried out to isolate regions corresponding to the interested mineral inclusions and pores. A segmentation procedure based on mathematical operators is customized for each type of inclusions and for pores. Secondly, numerical features are extracted from each segmented region, thus collecting data to perform automatic classification. A modular classifier is considered for classification, which is based on a combination of three two-layer feed-forward neural networks that are trained separately to recognise each class. Experimental results show that the created modular classifier provides high classification accuracy for both inclusions and pores. The classifier was finally applied absent the image analysis phase on new samples to show the effectiveness of the proposed methodology.


      PubDate: 2014-08-12T20:53:36Z
       
  • Goldwork in Ancient Egypt: workshop practices at Qurneh in the 2nd
           Intermediate Period
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Lore G. Troalen , Jim Tate , Maria Filomena Guerra
      Described by Petrie as ‘the largest group of goldwork that had left Egypt’, the jewellery from the intact burial of an adult and child discovered at Qurneh in 1908 is the most important group of gold objects excavated in Egypt dating from the 2nd Intermediate Period (c. 1800–1550 BC). This unique collection has been studied using several non-invasive analytical techniques (μPIXE, PIGE, XRF, and SEM-EDS), while calculation of the effective penetration depth values allowed the degree of surface enrichment to be assessed. The most recent results in respect of gold-working techniques are discussed and related to published work on the techniques used in Egypt in the same era and the subsequent era. The data showed, the coexistence, in a single grave, of jewellery with different levels of wear and colours of gold. The extensive use of hard soldering by the addition of copper to the gold-based alloys was also revealed. All the objects presented PGE inclusions implying the use of alluvial gold and/or recycling of ancient alloys made with this type of gold.


      PubDate: 2014-08-06T20:18:59Z
       
  • An archaeometric contribution to the study of ancient millstones from the
           Mulargia area (Sardinia, Italy) through new analytical data on volcanic
           raw material and archaeological items from Hellenistic and Roman North
           Africa
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Fabrizio Antonelli , Stefano Columbu , Mariette de Vos Raaijmakers , Martina Andreoli
      The main quarrying area of the Mulargia ignimbrite, used mainly to produce rotary millstones during the Hellenistic and Roman age, has been identified and sampled in order to update and complete the petrographic and geochemical database by employing standard analytical methods (optical microscopy and ICP-AES/MS spectrometry). The combination of petrographic and geochemical data concerning the Tertiary rhyodacitic to rhyolitic ignimbrites outcropping in central west Sardinia, previously very poor, form a helpful tool for future work on this important typology of volcanic millstones. The data bank obtained has been used to verify the geological source of eight millstones discovered in different rural settlements of Hellenistic Numidia and Roman Africa Proconsularis supposed by archaeologists to be made of ignimbrite from Mulargia. The results of the petro-archaeometric study confirmed a Sardinian origin for these millstones and represent one of the very few analytical proofs of their effective export to North Africa.


      PubDate: 2014-08-06T20:18:59Z
       
  • Radiocarbon dating of burials from the Teouma Lapita cemetery, Efate,
           Vanuatu
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Fiona Petchey , Matthew Spriggs , Stuart Bedford , Frédérique Valentin , Hallie Buckley
      The discovery of a cemetery at Teouma on the island of Efate in Vanuatu dated to c. 3000 years ago increased the number of early Pacific human remains available for study by nearly an order of magnitude and provided for the first time the ability to study the population dynamics of these early colonizers. The cemetery also provided an opportunity to investigate the chronological development of such a unique site. Although identified short-lived plant materials are favoured for dating archaeological sites, the reality of research in the Pacific region is that such materials are often rare, difficult to identify to species because of an absence of suitable reference collections, and dates on other materials often have greater potential to refine and focus 14C chronologies that deal with specific research questions. At Teouma, dates on the burial remains themselves are the best means to answer questions about the age and duration of the burial ground. Human bone, however, is one of the most complicated materials to date reliably because of dietary 14C offsets and bone preservation. One commonly used methodology for calibrating dates on human bone from Pacific human skeletal remains, based on linear interpolation between δ13C endpoints and δ15N values, is complicated by the wide range of foods available (marine, reef, C4 and C3), and remains largely untested in Pacific contexts. Radiocarbon dating of the Teouma site, including 36 Lapita-age burials, 5 dates on Conus sp. ring artefacts, and dates from the associated midden deposit, has enabled further evaluation of 14C dietary offsets and the reliability of calibrated radiocarbon ages on human bone. Bayesian evaluation of the 14C dates suggests the burial ground was in regular use by c. 2940–2880 cal BP, with the last interments occurring c. 2770–2710 cal BP. A number of burials could indicate possible earlier use, perhaps as early as 3110–2930 cal BP as indicated by the calibrated age range of Burial 57. This cannot be independently substantiated using other radiocarbon dates or context at the present time. Overall, these results suggest the burial ground was in use over a possible 150–240 years during the formative phase of Lapita expansion into Remote Oceania.


      PubDate: 2014-08-06T20:18:59Z
       
  • Reconstructing the impact of human activities in a NW Iberian Roman mining
           landscape for the last 2500 years
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Lourdes López-Merino , Antonio Martínez Cortizas , Guillermo S. Reher , José A. López-Sáez , Tim M. Mighall , Richard Bindler
      Little is known about the impact of human activities during Roman times on NW Iberian mining landscapes beyond the geomorphological transformations brought about by the use of hydraulic power for gold extraction. We present the high-resolution pollen record of La Molina mire, located in an area intensely used for gold mining (Asturias, NW Spain), combined with other proxy data from the same peat core to identify different human activities, evaluate the strategies followed for the management of the resources and describe the landscape response to human disturbances. We reconstructed the timing and synchronicity of landscape changes of varying intensity and form occurred before, during and after Roman times. An open landscape was prevalent during the local Late Iron Age, a period of relatively environmental stability. During the Early Roman Empire more significant vegetation shifts took place, reflected by changes in both forest (Corylus and Quercus) and heathland cover, as mining/metallurgy peaked and grazing and cultivation increased. In the Late Roman Empire, the influence of mining/metallurgy on landscape change started to disappear. This decoupling was further consolidated in the Germanic period (i.e., Visigothic and Sueve domination of the region), with a sharp decrease in mining/metallurgy but continued grazing. Although human impact was intense in some periods, mostly during the Early Roman Empire, forest regeneration occurred afterwards: clearances were local and short-lived. However, the Roman mining landscape turned into an agrarian one at the onset of the Middle Ages, characterized by a profound deforestation at a regional level due to a myriad of human activities that resulted in an irreversible openness of the landscape.


      PubDate: 2014-08-06T20:18:59Z
       
  • Editorial Board/Publication/Copyright Information
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49




      PubDate: 2014-08-06T20:18:59Z
       
  • Chemical analysis of cacao residues in archaeological ceramics from North
           America: considerations of contamination, sample size and systematic
           controls
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Dorothy K. Washburn , William N. Washburn , Petia A. Shipkova , Mary Ann Pelleymounter
      We address the issue of contamination in sampling and storage procedures and the requirements of sample size and controls necessary to assay ceramic vessels for absorbed chemical residues. We focus our discussion on the detection and quantification of the three methylxanthines – caffeine, theobromine and theophylline as a means to infer whether Mississippian and Southwestern vessels had been used for the consumption of a stimulating drink made from the seeds of Theobroma cacao, a tree that grows in the Mesoamerican tropics. Our research detected two statistically differentiated concentration levels of methylxanthines on objects in museum storage: vessels with low levels of methylxanthines from airborne particulates that we attribute to environmental contamination, and vessels with significant higher levels of the methylxanthines that we attribute to the archaeological record reflecting prehistoric cacao consumption. We propose that cacao was imported into the American Midwest/Southeast during the Mississippian platform mound tradition AD 1000–1300 and into the American Southwest during the Chaco Great House tradition AD 900–1200 and the Hohokam platform mound tradition AD 1300–1400.


      PubDate: 2014-08-02T19:52:48Z
       
  • Integrated RS, GIS and GPS approaches to archaeological prospecting in the
           Hexi Corridor, NW China: a case study of the royal road to ancient
           Dunhuang
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Lei Luo , Xinyuan Wang , Chuansheng Liu , Huadong Guo , Xiaocui Du
      According to historic records, the wasteland northeast of modern Dunhuang oasis contains remarkable, undiscovered monuments of medieval courier stations. In this study, statistical analysis of historic records and census data, image processing and interpretation of satellite remote sensing images, GIS analysis, and field surveys were carried out to contribute to the discovery of courier stations and the reconstruction of the medieval royal road system from Guazhou to Shazhou. Firstly, in order to obtain the existence regions of courier stations, historic records and census data were abstracted and digitized, for generating preliminary regions of interest by using GIS tools. Secondly, dried river channels and traces of the Great Wall were extracted from the remote sensing images, and GIS buffer and overlay analyses were applied to the creation of prospective sub-areas. Thirdly, prospective sub-areas were mapped from very high resolution WorldView-2 images, and suspected sites were found based on the human-computer interactive interpretation. Fourthly, suspected sites were investigated on the GPS-based archaeological survey, and were confirmed as two courier stations based on the remains of Han-Tang period observed at sites' surface. Lastly, the royal road to ancient Dunhuang, one of the most important sections of the royal road system in the Hexi Corridor, was discussed and reconstructed with the combined application of remote sensing imagery and ground-truthing.


      PubDate: 2014-08-02T19:52:48Z
       
  • Temporal trends in millet consumption in northern China
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Pia Atahan , John Dodson , Xiaoqiang Li , Xinying Zhou , Liang Chen , Linda Barry , Fiona Bertuch
      Temporal trends in prehistoric millet consumption are investigated in two regions of northern China, in the Wei River valley and a northern zone that encompasses north-eastern Shaanxi, western Shanxi and south-central Inner Mongolia. By directly radiocarbon dating each sample investigated, inferences about the timing of dietary shifts inferred from stable carbon and nitrogen isotope compositions can be made with a high degree of precision. Evidence presented here indicates that humans living around 4000 years ago in both the Wei River valley and the northern zone were heavily dependent on millet for their subsistence. By ca. 2500 cal. yr BP, a major diversification of diet had occurred in the Wei River valley, with some consuming much larger proportions of C3 foods than previously. These C3 foods may have included the western-derived cereals – wheat, barley and oats – and also rice.


      PubDate: 2014-08-02T19:52:48Z
       
  • An Approximate Bayesian Computation approach for inferring patterns of
           cultural evolutionary change
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): E.R. Crema , K. Edinborough , T. Kerig , S.J. Shennan
      A wide range of theories and methods inspired from evolutionary biology have recently been used to investigate temporal changes in the frequency of archaeological material. Here we follow this research agenda and present a novel approach based on Approximate Bayesian Computation (ABC), which enables the evaluation of multiple competing evolutionary models formulated as computer simulations. This approach offers the opportunity to: 1) flexibly integrate archaeological biases derived from sampling and time averaging; 2) estimate model parameters in a probabilistic fashion, taking into account both prior knowledge and empirical data; and 3) shift from an hypothesis-testing to a model selection approach. We applied ABC to a chronologically fine-grained Western European Neolithic armature assemblage, comparing three possible candidate models of evolutionary change: 1) unbiased transmission; 2) conformist bias; and 3) anti-conformist bias. Results showed that unbiased and anti-conformist transmission models provide equally good explanatory models for the observed data, suggesting high levels of equifinality. We also examined whether the appearance of the Bell Beaker culture was correlated with marked changes in the frequency of different armature types. Comparisons between the empirical data and expectations generated from the simulation model did not show any evidence in support of this hypothesis and instead indicated lower than expected dissimilarity between assemblages dated before and after the emergence of the Bell Beaker culture.


      PubDate: 2014-08-02T19:52:48Z
       
  • A preliminary study on the influence of cooking on the C and N isotopic
           composition of multiple organic fractions of fish (mackerel and haddock)
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Ricardo Fernandes , John Meadows , Alexander Dreves , Marie-Josée Nadeau , Pieter Grootes
      Stable isotope analysis represents the principal scientific technique used in the reconstruction of ancient human diet. Characterisation of human diet requires that the isotopic baseline is established, i.e. the isotopic signals of consumed food groups. However, cooking may alter the bulk isotopic signal of food groups through the selective loss of macronutrients or biochemical components with different isotopic signals. In this study, we investigate the influence of cooking on the stable isotope values of raw flesh of two fish species (mackerel, with a high fat content, and haddock, having a low fat content) using three potential prehistoric cooking methods. The fish were boiled in a pot, grilled beside an open fire, and steamed in hot sand. Cooking times and temperatures were monitored. Stable isotope ratios (δ13C and δ15N) were measured on multiple fractions (bulk flesh, lipids, lipid-extracted flesh, water-extracted flesh, water-soluble compounds, and fish-bone collagen) before and after cooking. The results show that, for some fractions, cooking modified the composition, but changes in isotopic values relative to raw fish were in general <1‰. The results also show that isotopic signals of fish-bone collagen were not significantly altered during cooking, and confirm previous findings that showed significant isotopic offsets between fish-bone collagen and edible fish fractions.


      PubDate: 2014-08-02T19:52:48Z
       
  • Matching sherds to vessels through ceramic petrography: an Early Neolithic
           Iberian case study
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Antonio Blanco-González , Attila Kreiter , Kamal Badreshany , John Chapman , Péter Pánczél
      Ceramic re-fitting has traditionally focused on linking sherds to vessels using their formal features or decoration. This paper presents an innovative procedure designed to test such associations using ceramic thin section analysis. An assemblage of the earliest hand-made ceramics from central Iberia dated to the second half of the 6th millennium BC was used as a test case. First, the whole ceramic assemblage was subjected to macroscopic morphological sorting, taphonomic evaluation and a re-fitting operation. These tasks led to the recognition of both secure physical joins and probable matches. 16 sherds, representing 8 pairs, were selected from among those probable matches. These samples were investigated by thin section petrography and the photomicrographs processed using digital image analyses to produce qualitative mineralogical and quantitative textural data for assessing the likelihood of each pair belonging to the same vessel. The results show the potential of this strategy for matching sherds to vessels, as well as its reliability and wide applicability.


      PubDate: 2014-08-02T19:52:48Z
       
  • Trampling versus cut marks on chemically altered surfaces: an experimental
           approach and archaeological application at the Barranc de la Boella site
           (la Canonja, Tarragona, Spain)
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Antonio Pineda , Palmira Saladié , Josep Maria Vergès , Rosa Huguet , Isabel Cáceres , Josep Vallverdú
      Several studies have attempted to identify diagnostic criteria for distinguishing between evidence of trampling and cut marks, two common modifications at archaeological sites. These studies have brought to light, with relative precision, the features that identify and differentiate the two types of modifications. However, few studies differentiate these modifications after they have been affected by other factors. Chemical alteration, related to lixiviated sediments, is documented in a relatively high number of archaeological sites. Following the criteria established by Domínguez-Rodrigo et al. (2009), the aim of this paper is to know if diagnostic criteria that would allow modifications resulting from trampling to be differentiated from cut mark modifications are preserved, after undergoing chemical alterations. The results have been applied to unidentified marks located on faunal skeletal remains from the La Mina site, at the Barranc de la Boella (Tarragona, Spain), the surfaces of which have been heavily modified by the lixiviation of the sediments. The data suggest that chemically altered marks lose the diagnostic criteria necessary for correct identification. The unidentified marks discovered on remains from la Boella could not be verified as cut or trampling marks and therefore cannot be considered in future zooarchaeological and taphonomical studies.


      PubDate: 2014-07-28T19:23:10Z
       
  • Functional analysis of prismatic blades and bladelets from Pinson Mounds,
           Tennessee
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Marvin Kay , Robert C. Mainfort Jr.
      Hopewell prismatic blade industries are a standardized technology but not a specialized one. Exactly why they are ubiquitous and synonymous with Hopewell is a puzzle. That Hopewell prismatic blade technology satisfied basic tool needs concurrent with efficient usage of toolstone are beyond dispute. Prismatic blades from Pinson Mounds and other Hopewell sites in the Midwest and Southeast United States were simple, easily repaired, modular tool forms of variable usage. This functional evaluation of 125 artifacts documents far distant preferential exploitation of prismatic blade toolstone sources within the Ohio River valley and its tributaries, reveals statistically significant differences among seven technological types, explicates a production chain model for burins, and argues that prismatic blade technology had an equal or greater social meaning and identity as a quintessential symbol of the Hopewell Interaction Sphere.


      PubDate: 2014-07-28T19:23:10Z
       
  • Multicomponent analyses of a hydatid cyst from an Early Neolithic
           hunter–fisher–gatherer from Lake Baikal, Siberia
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Andrea L. Waters-Rist , Kathleen Faccia , Angela Lieverse , Vladimir I. Bazaliiskii , M. Anne Katzenberg , Robert J. Losey
      Calcified biological objects are occasionally found at archaeological sites and can be challenging to identify. This paper undertakes the differential diagnosis of what we suggest is an Echinococcus granulosus hydatid cyst from an 8000-year-old mortuary site called Shamanka II in the Lake Baikal region of Siberia. Echinococcus is a parasitic tapeworm that needs two hosts to complete its life cycle: herbivores and humans are intermediate hosts, and carnivores such as dogs, wolves, and foxes are definitive hosts. In the intermediate host the Echinococcus egg hatches in the digestive system, penetrates the intestine, and is carried via the bloodstream to an organ, where it settles and turns into an ovoid calcified structure called a hydatid cyst. For this object, identification was based on macroscopic, radiographic, and stable isotope analysis. High-resolution computed tomography scanning was used to visualize the interior structure of the object, which is morphologically consistent with the E. granulosus species (called cystic Echinococcus). Stable isotope analysis of the extracted mineral and protein components of the object narrowed down the range of species from which it could come. The stable carbon and nitrogen isotope ratios of the object's protein, and stable carbon isotope ratio of the mineral, closely match those of the likely human host. Additionally, the δ13C protein-to-mineral spacing is very low, which fits expectations for a parasitic organism. To our knowledge this is the first isotopic characterization of a hydatid cyst and this method may be useful for future studies. The hydatid cyst most likely came from a probable female adult. Two additional hydatid cysts were found in a young adult female from a contemporaneous mortuary site in the same region, Lokomotiv. This manuscript ends with a brief discussion the importance of domesticated dogs in the disease's occurrence and the health implication of echinococcal infection for these Early Neolithic hunter–fisher–gatherers.


      PubDate: 2014-07-28T19:23:10Z
       
  • Pastoral land-use of the Indus Civilization in Gujarat: faunal analyses
           and biogenic isotopes at Bagasra
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Brad Chase , David Meiggs , P. Ajithprasad , Philip A. Slater
      The Indus Civilization (2600–1900 BC) in Gujarat is characterized by a series of small yet monumentally walled settlements located along trade and travel corridors. The manufacture and use of typically Harappan material culture at these settlements demonstrates that many residents of these sites participated in exchange and interaction networks that linked them to distant Indus cities. Less is known, however, regarding the ways in which the residents of these sites were situated into their local landscapes. Here we combine previously published faunal analyses from the small walled settlement of Bagasra in the Indian state of Gujarat, with a preliminary investigation of intra- and inter-individual variation in the ratios of biogenic isotopes of strontium (87Sr/86Sr), carbon (δ13C), and oxygen (δ18O) in the tooth enamel of domestic animals consumed at the site. 87Sr/86Sr ratios in the teeth of sheep and goats exhibit little intra- or inter-individual variation suggesting that most were raised locally while greater inter-individual variation in the teeth of cattle suggesting that nearly half of these animals were either raised further afield or were supplied with fodder raised elsewhere. δ13C values from these same samples in the teeth of sheep and goats exhibit considerable intra-individual variation suggesting of a seasonally variable diet incorporating significant wild forage while uniformly higher values in the teeth of cattle suggest that they consumed mostly agricultural produce throughout the year. δ18O values in the teeth of both sets of domestic livestock exhibit considerable intra-individual variation commensurate with the seasonal variation in temperature and rainfall characteristic of the region while variation between taxa is consistent with observed dietary differences. Taken together, our findings provide new information regarding the ways in which the domestic animals consumed at Bagasra were raised and obtained while establishing an empirical baseline necessary for further exploration of the land-use changes that may have accompanied the emergence and decline of South Asia's first urban civilization.


      PubDate: 2014-07-28T19:23:10Z
       
  • Morphometrics of Second Iron Age ceramics – strengths, weaknesses,
           and comparison with traditional typology
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): J. Wilczek , F. Monna , P. Barral , L. Burlet , C. Chateau , N. Navarro
      Although the potential of geometric morphometrics for the study of archaeological artefacts is recognised, quantitative evaluations of the concordance between such methods and traditional typology are rare. The present work seeks to fill this gap, using as a case study a corpus of 154 complete ceramic vessels from the Bibracte oppidum (France), the capital of the Celtic tribe Aedui from the Second Iron Age. Two outline-based approaches were selected: the Elliptic Fourier Analysis and the Discrete Cosine Transform. They were combined with numerous methods of standardisation/normalisation. Although standardisations may use either perimeter or surface, the resulting morphospaces remain comparable, and, interestingly, are also comparable with the morphospace built from traditional typology. Geometric morphometrics also present the advantage of being easily implemented and automated for large sets of artefacts. The method is reproducible and provides quantitative estimates, such as mean shape, and shape diversity of ceramic assemblages, allowing objective inferences to be statistically tested. The approach can easily be generalised and adopted for other kinds of artefacts, to study the level of production standardisation and the evolution of shape over space and time, and to provide information about material and cultural exchanges.


      PubDate: 2014-07-28T19:23:10Z
       
  • Characterization and comparison of the copper-base metallurgy of the
           Harappan sites at Farmana in Haryana and Kuntasi in Gujarat, India
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Jang-Sik Park , Vasant Shinde
      Copper-base metallic artifacts excavated from two Indus settlements at Farmana in Haryana and Kuntasi in Gujarat, India, were examined for their microstructure and chemical composition. The two sites were approximately contemporaneous and belong to the mature Harappan phase of the Indus Civilization, spanning the second half of the 3rd millennium BC. The microstructural data revealed that almost every object examined was substantially worked during fabrication. The composition data showed that arsenic served as the single alloying element in about 60% of the Farmana artifacts, with the rest of them made of either unalloyed copper or brass. Tin was not added deliberately in any of the Farmana artifacts. In the Kuntasi assemblage, however, tin as well as arsenic played a key role and most artifacts were alloyed with either arsenic or tin or both. Nevertheless, the two Harappan sites seem to have established a similar technology based on forging as the key fabrication method and circulation of product intermediaries as the primary means for metal acquisition. This article will present a detailed account of the mentioned results to characterize the technological status achieved by the two Indus communities. The results will then be compared with those of other Indus sites to gain insight into factors representing the general Indus bronze tradition.


      PubDate: 2014-07-28T19:23:10Z
       
  • Digital image enhancement for recording rupestrian engravings:
           applications to an alpine rockshelter
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Claudia Defrasne
      Image processing software, such as the DStretch plug-in for ImageJ or Photoshop, are currently used to make faint rupestrian pictographs more legible. During the ongoing study of an Alpine rockshelter, these software proved to be equally useful for the visualization of linear engravings and scratchings. This unexpected function of DStretch, created for the study of rupestrian paintings, made it possible to clarify and correct the previous recordings of an incised Iron Age warrior and to facilitate the digital tracing of a modern maritime scene. Even if such convincing results are determined by particular local geological conditions in this case, this function could facilitate the study of engravings in other contexts where the lithology of smooth rock surfaces produces a sharp contrast with incised images.


      PubDate: 2014-07-28T19:23:10Z
       
  • Characterising the use of urban space: a geochemical case study from
           Calleva Atrebatum (Silchester, Hampshire, UK) Insula IX during the late
           first/early second century AD
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Samantha R. Cook , Amanda S. Clarke , Michael G. Fulford , Jochen Voss
      The geochemical analysis of soil samples from the Roman town of Calleva Atrebatum (Silchester, Hampshire, UK) has been undertaken in order to enhance our understanding of urban occupation during the late first/early second century AD. Samples taken from a variety of occupation deposits within several, contemporary timber buildings, including associated hearths, have been analysed using laboratory-based x-ray fluorescence for a suite of elements (Cu, Zn, Pb, Sr, P and Ca). The patterns of elemental enrichment seen across the site have allowed us to compare and contrast the buildings that were occupied during this time in an attempt to distinguish different uses, such as between domestic and work-space. Two of the buildings stand out as having high concentrations of elements which suggest that they were dirtier work spaces, whilst other buildings appear to be have lower chemical loadings suggesting they were cleaner.


      PubDate: 2014-07-28T19:23:10Z
       
  • A new multistage construction chronology for the Great Serpent Mound, USA
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Edward W. Herrmann , G. William Monaghan , William F. Romain , Timothy M. Schilling , Jarrod Burks , Karen L. Leone , Matthew P. Purtill , Alan C. Tonetti
      Effigy mounds occur across the midcontinent of North America but their cultural purposes and construction chronologies are rarely known and often controversial. Determining the age and construction history of monuments is important to relate religious symbolism, scientific knowledge, and cultural continuity to groups within a region. Based mainly on circumstantial evidence, researchers have long held that Serpent Mound in Ohio, USA, was constructed 2000–3000 years ago during the Early Woodland (Adena) or Middle Woodland (Hopewell) periods. Excavations in 1991 recovered charcoal buried at shallow depths (35–45 cm) in fill units of the mound and the 14C ages from two of these units indicated that Serpent Mound was built ∼900 years ago, during the Late Prehistoric (Fort Ancient) period, much later than originally thought. Our recent multidisciplinary work provides a more complex, robust construction history of Serpent Mound. We used geophysics to map the mound, and solid-earth cores to provide accurate stratigraphy and organic samples for 14C age estimates from the base of the mound. Bayesian statistical analyses of the seven 14C ages from Serpent Mound suggest that it was first constructed ∼2300 years ago during the Early Woodland (Adena) period but was renovated 1400 years later during the Late Prehistoric (Fort Ancient) period, probably to repair eroded portions of the mound. Modification of the mound is also indicated by a possible abandoned coil that is located near the head of the Serpent and visible only in the magnetometer survey.


      PubDate: 2014-07-28T19:23:10Z
       
  • High-precision dating and ancient DNA profiling of moa (Aves:
           Dinornithiformes) eggshell documents a complex feature at Wairau Bar and
           refines the chronology of New Zealand settlement by Polynesians
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Chris Jacomb , Richard N. Holdaway , Morten E. Allentoft , Michael Bunce , Charlotte L. Oskam , Richard Walter , Emma Brooks
      Wairau Bar, New Zealand, is one of the few prehistoric sites in the world that could lay claim to being a site of first human intrusion into a pristine environment. It is certainly one of the best places to study human impact on a hitherto unoccupied land. Its potential status as a colonization phase settlement for New Zealand's Maori population raises questions that require fine-grained chronological resolution. Unfortunately, the simple stratigraphy of the Wairau Bar site has offered little opportunity for the development of high-resolution chronologies. This situation changed recently when new excavations exposed a complex, midden-rich feature which contained a wide range of dateable material, including hundreds of fragments of eggshell of the extinct megaherbivorous moa (Aves: Dinornithiformes). The thick eggshell, with its minimal inbuilt age and high resistance to contamination, is an ideal material for radiocarbon dating. Its refractory properties also allow high-quality preservation of DNA. The moa eggshell yielded radiocarbon that facilitated reconstruction of the chronology of deposition at a fine resolution. Ancient DNA profiling of eggshell fragments was used to ensure that dated fragments were from different individuals. Bayesian analysis of the dated fragments showed that the midden was laid down over a brief period in the early decades of the 14th century CE. This improved chronology provides a benchmark for understanding the duration of site occupation and revises current interpretations of the timing of Polynesian settlement of New Zealand.


      PubDate: 2014-07-28T19:23:10Z
       
  • Investigating inherent differences in isotopic composition between human
           bone and enamel bioapatite: implications for reconstructing residential
           histories
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Emily C. Webb , Christine D. White , Fred J. Longstaffe
      In archaeological research, human bone and enamel bioapatite isotopic compositions are commonly used to reconstruct residential and dietary histories. In doing so, enamel and bone bioapatite are implicitly treated as isotopically equivalent, but recent research has determined that carbonate–carbon and –oxygen isotopic compositions of these two tissues may be offset by several per mil. Here, we compare the isotopic compositions of co-forming bone and enamel from juvenile humans. We also assess the impact of a standard pre-treatment procedure for the removal of organic matter and exogenous carbonates on carbon- and oxygen-isotope compositions and on bioapatite crystallinity and carbonate content. Pre-treatment procedures had minimal effect on both enamel and bone carbon and oxygen isotopic compositions (±0.4–±0.9‰) and bioapatite crystallinity, and effectively removed exogenous carbonates. The offset between enamel and bone phosphate–oxygen isotopic compositions is relatively small (±0.7 ± 0.5‰). The offsets for carbonate–oxygen (+1.4 ± 1.0‰) and –carbon (+4.3 ± 1.2‰) are larger, and enamel is consistently 18O- and 13C-enriched relative to bone. Interpreted conservatively, phosphate–oxygen isotopic data from paired enamel and bone remain suitable for determining residential history, whereas the isotopic compositions of carbonate–oxygen and –carbon from enamel and bone bioapatite are inherently different and cannot be compared uncritically.


      PubDate: 2014-07-28T19:23:10Z
       
  • Response: ‘The Discovery of New Zealand's oldest shipwreck’
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Diederick Wildeman
      Based on the outcome of carbon dating wreck timbers found in New Zealand the article ‘The Discovery of New Zealand's oldest shipwreck-possible evidence of further Dutch exploration of the South Pacific’ in Volume 42 of the Journal of Archeological Science pp. 435–441 argues that the finds could be from an unknown early eighteenth century Dutch vessel sailing from the Dutch colonies in South–East Asia toward New Zealand. This response tries to explain why such a claim conflicts with the historical scholarship and therefore makes this attribution highly unlikely.


      PubDate: 2014-07-28T19:23:10Z
       
  • Unveiling the prehistoric landscape at Stonehenge through multi-receiver
           EMI
    • Abstract: Publication date: October 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 50
      Author(s): Philippe De Smedt , Marc Van Meirvenne , Timothy Saey , Eamonn Baldwin , Chris Gaffney , Vince Gaffney
      Archaeological research at Stonehenge (UK) is increasingly aimed at understanding the dynamic of the wider archaeological landscape. Through the application of state-of-the-art geophysical techniques, unprecedented insight is being gathered into the buried archaeological features of the area. However, applied survey techniques have rarely targeted natural soil variation, and the detailed knowledge of the palaeotopography is consequently less complete. In addition, metallic topsoil debris, scattered over different parts of the Stonehenge landscape, often impacts the interpretation of geophysical datasets. The research presented here demonstrates how a single multi-receiver electromagnetic induction (EMI) survey, conducted over a 22 ha area within the Stonehenge landscape, offers detailed insight into natural and anthropogenic soil variation at Stonehenge. The soil variations that were detected through recording the electrical and magnetic soil variability, shed light on the genesis of the landscape, and allow for a better definition of potential palaeoenvironmental and archaeological sampling locations. Based on the multi-layered dataset, a procedure was developed to remove the influence of topsoil metal from the survey data, which enabled a more straightforward identification of the detected archaeology. The results provide a robust basis for further geoarchaeological research, while potential to differentiate between modern soil disturbances and the underlying sub-surface variations can help in solving conservation and management issues. Through expanding this approach over the wider area, we aim at a fuller understanding of the human–landscape interactions that have shaped the Stonehenge landscape.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2014-07-28T19:23:10Z
       
  • Sample-specific sex estimation in archaeological contexts with commingled
           human remains: a case study from the Middle Neolithic cave of Bom Santo in
           Portugal
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): David Gonçalves , Raquel Granja , Francisca Alves Cardoso , António Faustino de Carvalho
      Estimating sex on large assemblages of commingled skeletal human remains is challenging because it prevents the systemic observation of the skeleton and thus reduces the reliability of sex-ratio estimation. In order to tackle this problem, the applicability of sample-specific odontometric methods was assessed on the human skeletal remains from the Middle Neolithic cave necropolis of Bom Santo in Portugal. We present an approach that confirms some of the assumptions – the normal distribution of the data and the 1:1.5 sex ratio – indicated by Albanese et al. (2005) for the application of sample-specific methods. These assumptions are often difficult to assess in archaeological samples and thus prevent the use of sample-specific methods. The mean bucco-lingual diameter of 51 lower right canine teeth was used as a cut-off point to discriminate between sexes within a sample from Bom Santo. Before that, Shapiro–Wilk statistics was used to confirm that the distribution of the data in a sample of 51 lower canine teeth was normal. In addition, the range and central tendency of the data were compared to other samples for which the sex of the individuals was known in order to confirm that those parameters were consistent with those of a sample presenting a balanced sex ratio. The canine sex estimations were then compared with the sex estimation obtained from mandibles where canine teeth were still in situ (n = 8). No clear disagreement between the two methods was found thus demonstrating good potential of this method for sex estimation and for the sex ratio estimation in commingled human skeletal remains. Results indicated that sex ratios in Room A and Room B at Bom Santo were quite different. This indicates that the two locations may have been used in a different way according to sex.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Herding cats – Roman to Late Antique glass groups from Bubastis,
           northern Egypt
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): D. Rosenow , Th. Rehren
      Eighty-seven glass fragments from Roman and Late Antique layers at Tell Basta/Bubastis in the Eastern Nile Delta were typologically evaluated and chemically analysed to determine chronological and compositional patterns of glass use at this important Egyptian city, and how this relates to larger pattern of glass production and consumption in the first half of the first millennium AD. Bubastis is situated in geographical proximity to Alexandria, an important seaport, and at the same time close to the raw glass production areas in the Wadi Natrun and Sinai peninsula. This paper reports the first substantial set of compositional data of Roman to Late Antique glass from a settlement in northern Egypt, filling an important gap in our knowledge of glass consumption pattern in the first half of the first millennium AD. The glass from Bubastis falls into several compositional groups known already from elsewhere in the Roman and Late Antique world, including antimony- and manganese-decoloured glass and two varieties of HIMT glass. Changes in glass composition over more than 500 years are in line with earlier observations concerning changes in prevalence of these glass groups. However, compositional groups known to dominate archaeological glass assemblages elsewhere, such as Roman blue/green during the earlier part of the period under study, or Levantine I in the later period, are notably absent. For the later period, this is probably due to the proximity of Tell Basta to the suspected production region of HIMT glass in northern Sinai/Egypt. By analogy, this might indicate that the earlier Roman blue/green glass has a production origin further away from the Delta than the decolourised glasses prevailing in Bubastis. A particular vessel type, small-volume thick-walled dark green unguentaria, is made of probably Egyptian plant ash glass, indicating the existence of a specialised glassmaker during the early first millennium AD.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Assessing use and suitability of scanning electron microscopy in the
           analysis of micro remains in dental calculus
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): Robert C. Power , Domingo C. Salazar-García , Roman M. Wittig , Amanda G. Henry
      Dental calculus is increasingly recognized as a major reservoir of dietary information. Palaeodietary studies using plant and animal micro remains (e.g. phytoliths, pollen, sponge spicules, and starch grains) trapped in calculus have the potential to revise our knowledge of the dietary role of plants in past populations. The conventional methods used to isolate and identify these micro remains rely on removing them from their microenvironment in the calculus, thus the microenvironment that traps and preserves micro remains is not understood. By using scanning electron microscopy and energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM–EDX) on modern chimpanzee calculus from the Taï Forest, Côte d'Ivoire, and human calculus from the Chalcolithic site of Camino del Molino, Spain, we present the first reported observations on characteristics of the matrix setting that are conducive to the survival of starch in dental calculus. We also assess the potential for SEM–EDX to detect starch and differentiate it from structurally and molecularly similar substrates. We demonstrate that SEM–EDX may offer a non-destructive technique for studying micro remains in certain contexts. Finally, we compare traditional optical analytical techniques (OM) with less invasive electron microscopy. The results indicate that SEM–EDX and OM are both effective for observing micro remains in calculus, but differ in their analytical resolution to identify different micro remains, and we therefore recommend a sequential use of both techniques.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Late Bronze and Early Iron Age copper smelting technologies in the South
           Caucasus: the view from ancient Colchis c. 1500–600 BC
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): Nathaniel L. Erb-Satullo , Brian J.J. Gilmour , Nana Khakhutaishvili
      Many of the arguments for how and why people began to use iron in Southwest Asia rely on assumptions about the technology and relative organization of copper and iron smelting. However, research on the technological transformations of the Late Bronze Age and Early Iron Age suffers from a lack of investigation of primary metal production contexts, especially in regions outside the Levant. The current research examines metal production debris from a large number of smelting sites in western Georgia, and addresses questions of technology and resource utilization through detailed examination of few select sites. Through the chemical and mineralogical analysis of slag samples, we demonstrate the existence of an extensive copper-production industry and reconstruct several key aspects of the smelting technology during the Late Bronze Age and Early Iron Age. Combining a statistical analysis of slag mineralogy with other lines of evidence, we argue that copper was extracted from sulfide ores through a process of roasting and smelting in deep pit furnaces. The data also suggest that metalworkers at different sites exploited different ore sources within the same ore body. These results form a fundamental basis for further examination of spatial and chronological patterns of technological variation, with implications for models of Near Eastern copper production in this crucial period. Intriguing evidence of bloomery iron smelting, though currently undated, reinforces the region's potential to provide data on a key technological transformation.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Marine or estuarine radiocarbon reservoir corrections for mollusks'
           A case study from a medieval site in the south of England
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): Paula J. Reimer
      Mollusk shells are frequently radiocarbon dated and provide reliable calibrated age ranges when the regional marine reservoir correction is well-established. For mollusks from an estuarine environment the reservoir correction may be significantly different than the regional marine reservoir correction due to the input of bedrock or soil derived carbonates. Some mollusk species such as oysters are tolerant of a significant range of salinities which makes it difficult to determine which reservoir correction is appropriate. A case study is presented of an anomalous radiocarbon age for an oyster shell paint dish found in the fabric of the ruined nave walls of St Mary's Church, Shoreham-by-Sea, West Sussex, England. Stable isotopes (δ18O and δ13C) were used to establish the type of environment in which the oyster had lived. Paired marine and terrestrial samples from a nearby medieval site were radiocarbon dated to provide an appropriate reservoir correction.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Experimental determinations of cutmark orientation and the reconstruction
           of prehistoric butchery behavior
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): Charles P. Egeland , Kristen R. Welch , Christopher M. Nicholson
      The frequency, anatomical location, and orientation of stone tool cutmarks have all been widely employed in reconstructions of ancient butchery practices. Cutmark orientation in particular has great potential to inform on various aspects of past behavior, and here we provide experimentally derived orientations with novice butchers in two contexts. The first models the butchery of a carcass part by a single individual, and the second the butchery of a carcass part by several individuals simultaneously. Our goal is to test the following hypothesis: do butchers working alone produce less variation in cutmark orientation than several working at once' Preliminary data indicate that, at least with the novices involved in this experiment, variation in cutmark angles does not differ significantly between the two scenarios. Although further experimental work is warranted, we suggest that while the number of individuals may play some role in determining cutmark orientations, experience and skill are also important factors.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Revisiting carbonate quantification in apatite (bio)minerals: a validated
           FTIR methodology
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): A. Grunenwald , C. Keyser , A.M. Sautereau , E. Crubézy , B. Ludes , C. Drouet
      Carbonated apatites represent an important class of compounds encountered in many fields including anthropology, archeology, geology, medicine and biomaterials engineering. They constitute, in particular, the mineral part of bones and teeth, are found in sedimentary settings, and are used as biomimetic compounds for the development of bone tissue engineering scaffolds. Whether for assessing the degree of biomimetism of synthetic apatites or for better understanding diagenetic events, their thorough physico-chemical characterization is essential, and includes, in particular, the evaluation of their carbonate content. FTIR is especially well-suited for such a goal, as this spectroscopy technique requires only a low amount of specimen to analyze, and carbonate ions exhibit a clear vibrational signature. In this contribution, we critically discuss several FTIR-approaches that may be (or have been) considered in view of carbonation quantification. The best methodology appears to be based on the analysis of the ν 3(CO3) and ν 1 ν 3(PO4) modes. The area ratio r c/p between these two contributions was found to be directly correlated to the carbonate content of the samples (R 2 = 0.985), with the relation wt.% CO3 = 28.62*r c/p + 0.0843. The method was validated thanks to titrations by coulometry assays for various synthetic reference samples exhibiting carbonate contents between 3 and 7 wt.%. The FTIR carbonate quantification methodology that we propose here was also tested with success on three skeletal specimens (two bones/one tooth), after elimination of the collagen contribution. Comparative data analysis is also presented, showing that the use of other vibration bands, or only peak heights (instead of peak areas), leads to significantly lower correlation agreement. This FTIR data treatment methodology is recommended so as to limit errors on the evaluation of carbonate contents in apatite substrates.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Characterizing obsidian sources with portable XRF: accuracy,
           reproducibility, and field relationships in a case study from Armenia
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): Ellery Frahm
      Portable X-ray fluorescence (pXRF) has been demonstrated as a powerful tool to assign obsidian artifacts to sources. Newer instruments can even match artifacts from some regions to their sources in a matter of just seconds, not minutes. There remains, however, a reluctance to use pXRF instruments to characterize the sources themselves. Many past studies have used pXRF in a region where the sources have been well characterized using lab-based techniques. That is, earlier analytical work established compositional types for the obsidian sources, and pXRF was later used to sort artifacts into those types. This is due, at least in part, to notions that pXRF instruments are insufficiently accurate or reliable to characterize the sources. The motivations to use pXRF for characterizing sources are similar to those for sourcing artifacts: many more specimens can be analyzed without concern for the financial, practical, and legal considerations associated with instruments in distant facilities. This paper documents tests conducted to investigate the accuracy and reproducibility of pXRF data relative to five laboratory-based techniques (NAA, EDXRF, WDXRF, EMPA, and LA-ICP-MS) with a focus on Armenian obsidian sources. These tests demonstrate that there is no reason to believe pXRF is inherently inaccurate, unreproducible, or otherwise inadequate for source characterization. A case study of the Pokr Arteni source highlights the advantages of pXRF, including the capability to analyze large numbers of specimens, recognize variability, and elucidate field relationships. In these respects, pXRF can facilitate more sophisticated obsidian sourcing studies.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Documenting contamination in ancient starch laboratories
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): Alison Crowther , Michael Haslam , Nikki Oakden , Dale Walde , Julio Mercader
      Ancient starch analysis is an important methodology for researching ancient ecology, plant use, diet, and tool function; particularly in the deep past when other proxies may not survive. Establishing the authenticity of ancient starch is therefore a major concern for researchers. Despite decades of archaeological application, there are currently no empirically-tested procedures for systematically assessing and reducing intra-laboratory contamination. At the Universities of Oxford and Calgary, we have tested laboratory consumables, airborne contaminants, and decontamination techniques (oxidisation, boiling, autoclaving, torching) to establish contamination sources, types and quantities, as well as the most effective methods of destroying them. In our laboratories, we found that (i) contaminant starches represent a restricted range of types, (ii) many commonly used consumables including non-powdered gloves and Calgon are starch-rich, (iii) passive slide traps often used to test for airborne contaminants generate unreliable proxies and unacceptably low statistical confidence, and (iv) decontamination procedures using weak acids and bleach are largely ineffective. This collaborative study has allowed us to identify and reduce the risk of contamination and to develop better internal authenticity criteria for future ancient starch studies conducted in our laboratories.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Intestinal parasites in a mid-14th century latrine from Riga, Latvia: fish
           tapeworm and the consumption of uncooked fish in the medieval eastern
           Baltic region
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): Hui-Yuan Yeh , Aleks Pluskowski , Uldis Kalējs , Piers D. Mitchell
      The aim of this study was to investigate faecal material from a medieval latrine in the coastal town of Riga (Latvia) in order to identify the intestinal parasites present within the population. We identified very large numbers of the eggs of three species of parasitic intestinal worms that affect humans – fish tapeworm (Diphyllobothrium latum), whipworm (Trichuris trichiura), and roundworm (Ascaris lumbricoides). The fish tapeworm evidence demonstrates that the population were eating large amounts of uncooked fish (perhaps raw, smoked, or pickled) since cooking prevents parasite transmission. ELISA analysis identified the presence of the parasite Entamoeba histolytica, which can cause dysentery in humans. We also noted two eggs of equid pinworm (Oxyuris equi) that affects horses and donkeys, demonstrating the presence of this parasite in farm animals of the region by the medieval period. We discuss the implications of these findings for our knowledge of intestinal parasites in coastal areas of the medieval Baltic region, of food consumption, of hygiene, and of the affects of the parasites upon the health of those living in medieval Riga, the most important city in the crusader state of Livonia.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • An experimental assessment of the influences on edge damage to lithic
           artifacts: a consideration of edge angle, substrate grain size, raw
           material properties, and exposed face
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): Shannon P. McPherron , David R. Braun , Tamara Dogandžić , Will Archer , Dawit Desta , Sam C. Lin
      Functional analyses of stone tool assemblages face a number of methodological challenges. Aside from determining specific uses, it can be difficult to know which artifacts in an assemblage were used at all. Typically retouch is taken as a proxy for indicating past use, but ignoring unretouched flakes means excluding the overwhelming majority of most assemblages. Assessing whether an unretouched flake has been used is complicated. Edge damage on flakes can be caused by use or by taphonomic processes. One of the more important of these processes is trampling. Experiments have shown that trampling can create damage mimicking retouch, and unlike some other taphonomic processes trampling is otherwise difficult to detect. One possible solution is to look for patterning in the placement (left vs. right, ventral vs. dorsal, proximal vs. distal) of edge damage, and recent studies using GIS based approaches have shown the utility of this method at an assemblage level. Here we trampled a set of experimental flakes made from two raw materials on two substrate types and analyzed the edge damage patterns using a newly developed image analysis program that is similar to previous GIS based approaches. We found that a previously unquantified variable, edge angle, is strongly correlated with the likelihood of damage. Thus in circumstances where edge angles are non-randomly distributed across flake types, trampling damage will be patterned. These results have implications for previously published edge damage studies, and further indicate that basic flake mechanics need to be considered in studies where function is inferred from edge damage patterns. Approaches to the archaeological record that employs assemblage level assessments of edge damage, must consider a range of factors when inferring behaviors from these patterns.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Tracking archaeological and historical mines using mineral prospectivity
           mapping
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): F. Monna , E. Camizuli , R. Nedjai , F. Cattin , C. Petit , J.-P. Guillaumet , I. Jouffroy-Bapicot , B. Bohard , C. Chateau , P. Alibert
      The present study proposes a technological transfer from modern mining prospection to the field of archaeology, providing a methodology to facilitate the discovery of ancient mining sites. This method takes advantage of the thousands of geochemical analyses of streambed sediments, performed by national geological surveys to inventory mineral substances. In order to delineate geochemical anomalies, the datasets are treated following two different approaches: Exploratory Data Analysis and a fractal-based method often recognised as more powerful. Mineral prospectivity maps are then obtained by combining the results with a geographical information system. The surroundings of the Celtic oppidum of Bibracte, French Massif Central, known to have been mined at least since the Late Bronze Age until Modern Times, have been chosen to exemplify the method's potential in archaeology. First, an exhaustive record of the mining sites was undertaken over a pilot area by pedestrian prospection. If mineral prospectivity maps had been used as guidelines, ∼70% of these mines would have been discovered by prospecting only ∼15–20% of the whole area whatever the method used to treat the dataset. At least for our specific case, the multifractal approach is as powerful as EDA. Besides saving a significant amount of time and effort, the methods described here may supply clues for determining the nature of mineral substances exploited in the past, when such information cannot be straightforwardly obtained from the field or from textual archives. It should however be noticed that this approach is proposed as a first step before peer archaeological investigation following more conventional methods. Technically, there is no real obstacle to the application of the methodology proposed here, because (i) software and associated packages are freely available from the web, as well as original geochemical datasets (at least in France), and (ii) minimal mathematical skills are required.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Cinnabar in Mesoamerica: poisoning or mortuary ritual'
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): Alfonso Ávila , Josefina Mansilla , Pedro Bosch , Carmen Pijoan
      In Mesoamerica, dead bodies were often smeared with red pigment, either hematite or cinnabar. Most archaeological remains include bones whose surface may be red colored. Being cinnabar a mercury compound whose chemical formula is HgS, it is not clear if Hg ions diffuse into the hydroxyapatite lattice. In this work we found that cinnabar is not easily dissociated and, therefore, ions from cinnabar spread after death, if any, do not diffuse into hydroxyapatite. However, in bones from the archaeological site of Ranas, close to Querétaro, Mexico, we found Hg ions in interstitial positions of the bone hydroxyapatite lattice. Ranas was a cinnabar mining zone. Hence, the presence of Hg ions in bone hydroxyapatite lattice cannot be due to post mortem rituals and it has to be attributed to breathing or swallowing of mercury vapors or solutions during life. It is, then, a case of poisoning with mercury, probably due to exposition to vapors originated in the mine exploitation or to contaminated food.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Butrint (Albania) between eastern and western Mediterranean glass
           production: EMPA and LA-ICP-MS of late antique and early medieval finds
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): S. Conte , T. Chinni , R. Arletti , M. Vandini
      In the Late Roman period, the city of Butrint (SW Albania) was one of the most important seaports of the eastern Mediterranean due to its very favourable position and an extended presence of human settlements (from the 5th century BC to the modern age). The city seems to have particularly flourished after being declared a Roman colony under Augustus in 31 BC, but even after the Roman period, Butrint remained a central node in eastern trade routes. During the archaeological campaign of 2011 directed by David Hernandez (University of Notre Dame – US), aimed at identifying the eastern border of the Butrint Roman Forum, several glass artifacts were recovered and dated to the late antique and early medieval period. In this study 33 fragments of glass (32 transparent, 1 opaque) were analysed from different objects (drinking glasses, bowls, etc) mostly dated from the 5th to the 6th centuries AD. The aims of this work are: i) understanding the raw materials, the manufacturing techniques employed for glass production, and their evolution through the time; ii) correctly classifying items of uncertain date; iii) interpreting the economic development and trade models of the area. Chemical analyses were performed by electron microprobe (EMPA) for major and minor elements and by ICP mass spectroscopy (LA-ICP-MS) for trace elements. The chemical results indicate that the samples were produced with natron as fluxing agent. They can be divided, on the basis of the concentrations of Fe, Ti, and Mn, between the two main compositional groups widespread in the Mediterranean from the 4th century onward: HIMT (23 samples), and Levantine I (10 samples). Among the HIMT samples, both “weak” HIMT (13 samples), and “strong” HIMT (10 samples) were identified. This variety of compositions indicates that in Butrint, between the end of the 4th and the end of the 6th century, the glass materials were probably imported from different suppliers.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Investigation of cereal remains at the Xiaohe Cemetery in Xinjiang, China
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): Ruiping Yang , Yimin Yang , Wenying Li , Yidilisi Abuduresule , Xingjun Hu , Changsui Wang , Hongen Jiang
      The Xiaohe Cemetery, a typical remnant of the famous bronze-age Xiaohe culture, is located in the Lop Nur region of Xinjiang, which is one of the driest regions in China. Several excavations were conducted and cereal remains discovered in the tombs were evaluated to better understand the living conditions of this ancient civilization. Three types of cereals were identified: viz. florets of common millet (Panicum miliaceum), caryopses of bread wheat (Triticum aestivum) and love grass (Eragrostis sp.). The grains of Eragrostis sp. were deduced to be utilized in different ways, such as a food resource and/or as fodder for cattle feeding. All three cereal crops provided clues about the vegetable diet as well as shed light on the understanding of the Xiaohe culture.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Refining gold with glass – an early Islamic technology at Tadmekka,
           Mali
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): Th. Rehren , S. Nixon
      We describe two crucible fragments from an early Islamic context at the West African site of Tadmekka, in the Republic of Mali. They are made from a very sandy fabric and contain numerous gold particles and mineral grains in a matrix of lightly-coloured glass-based crucible slag. We interpret these as remains of a process separating freshly-panned gold concentrate from residual mineral inclusions, by melting the concentrate together with crushed glass beads. The process has similarities in modern artisanal practice, and shows the versatility of craftspeople in this major urban trading centre famous for its gold wealth.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Integrating geoarchaeology and magnetic susceptibility at three shell
           mounds: a pilot study from Mornington Island, Gulf of Carpentaria,
           Australia
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): Daniel Rosendahl , Kelsey M. Lowe , Lynley A. Wallis , Sean Ulm
      In coastal areas of the globe, open shell matrix sites are commonly used to establish regional chronologies of human occupation and identify patterns of cultural change, particularly for the Holocene, post-sea-level stabilisation period. Despite this, many basic sedimentary analyses that are routinely applied to rockshelter deposits (e.g. geophysical characterisation, particle size etc) are rarely applied to these sites. Magnetic susceptibility, occasionally used in rockshelters, has never been used to investigate shell matrix sites in Australia, despite several international studies identifying its efficacy for other types of open sites. This paper reports a pilot project applying a range of conventional sedimentary and archaeological analyses, as well as magnetic susceptibility at three anthropogenic shell mounds on Mornington Island, Gulf of Carpentaria, Australia. Results are compared to, firstly, assess site integrity and, secondly, to ascertain whether magnetic signatures are related to cultural or natural site formation processes. The results establish that the mounds were repeatedly visited, despite the archaeological evidence, including radiocarbon ages, suggesting effectively ‘instantaneous’ deposition. This has important implications for studies of other shell mounds where the limitations of radiocarbon dating precision may also mask multiple deposition events.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
  • Stable isotope analysis and variation in medieval domestic pig husbandry
           practices in northwest Europe: absence of evidence for a purely
           herbivorous diet
    • Abstract: Publication date: September 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 49
      Author(s): D.J. Halley , Jørgen Rosvold
      Stable isotope ratios have been widely used to infer past diets, domestication and husbandry practices of pigs, but few studies have addressed the proper baselines for such inferences. We analysed the diet of pig Sus scrofa from stable isotope analysis of carbon (δ13C) and nitrogen (δ15N) values of collagen from, urban Bergen, Norway (1300–1400AD). These were compared with values from Skipshelleren (5500BC–200AD); and from other medieval sites in NW Europe. Results indicated that the pigs from Bergen ate a very high proportion of marine protein compared to pigs and wild boar from Skipshelleren who ate a diet primarily of plant material. Results from other medieval sites in NW Europe show considerable variation in δ13C and δ15N values, indicating large variations in diet. However, none of the values are consistent with a diet wholly dominated by plant material; and therefore pig husbandry through outspan herding (pannage) without supplementary feeding. We question interpretations to the contrary, which neglect the role of known differences in dietary fractionation between species in producing δ13C and δ15N values of tissue. Data from domestic pigs of ancient breeds undoubtedly raised by outspan herding/pannage are so far unavailable and would be instructive.


      PubDate: 2014-06-27T16:44:44Z
       
 
 
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