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        1 2     

  Subjects -> ARCHAEOLOGY (Total: 183 journals)
Abstracta Iranica     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Acta Antiqua     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 14)
Acta Archaeologica     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 216)
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: 2)
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: 4)
American Antiquity     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
American Indian Culture and Research Journal     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 12)
American Journal of Archaeology     Partially Free   (Followers: 31)
Anatolica     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 8)
Ancient Asia     Open Access   (Followers: 10)
Ancient Near Eastern Studies     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 18)
Ancient Society     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9)
Annuaire du Collège de France     Open Access  
Annual of the British School at Athens     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 13)
Anthropology & Archeology of Eurasia     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 11)
Antiqua     Open Access   (Followers: 4)
Antiquaries Journal, The     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 15)
Antiquite Tardive     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 3)
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: 11)
Archaeologiai Értesitö     Full-text available via subscription  
Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 14)
Archaeological Dialogues     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 159)
Archaeological Prospection     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 12)
Archaeological Reports     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)
Archaeologies     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 13)
Archaeology in Oceania     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 8)
Archaeology International     Open Access   (Followers: 16)
Archaeology, Ethnology and Anthropology of Eurasia     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 15)
Archaeometry     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 16)
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   (Followers: 1)
Archivo Español de Arqueología     Partially Free  
Arkeos     Open Access  
Arqueología de la Arquitectura     Open Access   (Followers: 2)
ART-SANAT     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
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: 3)
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   (Followers: 1)
Britannia     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 7)
Bryn Mawr Classical Review     Open Access   (Followers: 21)
Bulletin du centre d’études médiévales d’Auxerre     Open Access   (Followers: 5)
Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 9)
Bulletin of the History of Archaeology     Open Access   (Followers: 19)
Cambridge Archaeological Journal     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 197)
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: 183)
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: 184)
Evolution of Science and Technology / Mokslo ir technikos raida     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Exchange     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 4)
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: 11)
Heritage Science     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
Hesperia     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 10)
Hispania Epigraphica     Open Access   (Followers: 1)
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: 182)
International Journal of Nautical Archaeology     Hybrid Journal   (Followers: 162)
International Journal of Paleopathology     Partially Free   (Followers: 7)
International Journal of Speleology     Open Access   (Followers: 9)
Internet Archaeology     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 12)
INTRECCI d'arte     Open Access   (Followers: 5)
IpoTESI di Preistoria     Open Access   (Followers: 3)
Iranica Antiqua     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 6)
Jahrbuch des Deutschen Archäologischen Instituts     Full-text available via subscription   (Followers: 4)

        1 2     

Journal Cover Journal of Archaeological Science
   [170 followers]  Follow    
   Hybrid Journal Hybrid journal (It can contain Open Access articles)
     ISSN (Print) 0305-4403 - ISSN (Online) 1095-9238
     Published by Elsevier Homepage  [2573 journals]   [SJR: 1.373]   [H-I: 57]
  • Ancient East Polynesian voyaging spheres: new evidence from the Vitaria
           Adze Quarry (Rurutu, Austral Islands)
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Barry V. Rolett , Eric W. West , John M. Sinton , Radu Iovita
      The use of adze sourcing to study interaction spheres opens new perspectives on ancient Polynesian voyaging. Our work contributes to this effort by documenting the discovery and geochemical signature of the Vitaria Adze Quarry, a major adze quarry complex in the central East Polynesia core area. We present WD-XRF geochemical data for the Vitaria raw material and ethnographically collected adzes from Raivavae and Tubuai Islands, also part of the Australs. Comparison of our results with previously published artifact and source data shows that initial tool production at the Vitaria Adze Quarry coincides with the human colonization of East Polynesia. Artifacts from Rurutu were exchanged within the Australs, as well as to neighboring archipelagoes, indicating the importance of Rurutu as a node in voyaging networks spanning the East Polynesian homeland area. Large-scale tool production at the Vitaria Adze Quarry may have contributed to the rise of Vitaria District as the seat of the paramount chief and the center of power on Rurutu.


      PubDate: 2014-11-27T06:51:21Z
       
  • In search of sealed Palaeolithic and Mesolithic sites using core sampling:
           the impact of grid size, meshes and auger diameter on discovery
           probability
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Philippe Crombé , Jeroen Verhegge
      Since the 90s core sampling, particularly within Dutch and Belgian wetland research, has increasingly become important for detecting covered prehistoric hunter-gatherer sites, comprised mainly of scatters of lithic artifacts of variable size and find density. Several methodological studies (Tol et al., 2004; Verhagen et al., 2013) have tried to develop standard sampling protocols differentiating grid size, core diameter and sieving mesh width according to the expected site-types. These studies are all based on a statistical analysis of excavation data, using simulations. However, these theoretical models have never been fully tested against empirical data coming from augering projects. In this paper core sampling data from 11 cored sites, some of which were subsequently excavated, are used in view of developing a core sampling strategy which allows the detection of the broadest possible range of prehistoric sites. The study concludes that in most cases, augering within a 10 m grid with a 10 cm–12 cm core and sieving through 1 mm–2 mm meshes allows the detection of buried sites, eventually even small and low-density ones. In order to further increase the discovery chances a two-step gridding approach is recommended.


      PubDate: 2014-11-27T06:51:21Z
       
  • Plants and environment: results of archaeobotanical research of the Bronze
           Age settlements in the Carpathian Foothills in Poland
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Magdalena Moskal-del Hoyo , Maria Lityńska-Zając , Marta Korczyńska , Katarzyna Cywa , Tobias L. Kienlin , Klaus Cappenberg
      The first permanent occupation in the micro-region localized around Janowice, in the middle valley of the Dunajec river in the Polish Carpathian Foothills, begun at the turn of the Middle Bronze Age and the Late Bronze Age. Different landscape forms were settled, in which the highest part of the hills or areas located in the proximity of the river were especially chosen for stable settlement. All of them were characterized by the presence of fertile loess and alluvial soils. Macroscopic plant remains found in different occupational phases of six archaeological sites represent cultivated and wild plants. The remains of cultivated plants confirmed that plant resources formed an important part of the past subsistence strategies. It was observed that the same spectrum of cultivated species was utilized during about one millennium of occupation in the forelands, from the beginning of the occupation until the end of the Early Iron Age. Hordeum vulgare, Triticum diccocon, Triticum spelta and Panicum miliaceum were the dominant cereal crops. A consistent choice of varied cereal species, along with pulses, may indicate that both winter and summer crops were cultivated and the works dedicated to crop farming were distributed along various months. This strategy could also provide higher and more reliable yields. In addition, the edaphic requirements of weed remains may confirm that people used rich and moderately moist soils for cereal cultivation. Overall, a relatively early cultivation of spelt wheat and millet should be emphasized in the Carpathian Foothills since the oldest phase can be dated back to ca. 1500–1300 cal. BC. A relatively high abundance and ubiquity of spelt wheat resulted very interesting in the context of other cereal remains found in the Late Bronze Age in Poland. In addition, an Agricultural Predictive Model was prepared for the closest regions of the settlements in order to demonstrate areas with optimal environmental conditions for agricultural practices. Altogether, macroscopic plant remains are related mainly to synanthropic habitats from fields to ruderal ones. Moreover, human activities could be also responsible for the development of steppe-like plant communities, which are inferred after the finding of feather grass (Stipa sp.). The remains of wood preserved as charcoals represent a separate group of plants. They were associated to firewood collections and therefore their analysis may be used for the reconstruction of local woodlands. A major formation is the oak-hornbeam forest. Interestingly, at the end of the Subboreal period, woodlands were dominated by late-arriving species to the Polish territory, such as Carpinus betulus and Fagus sylvatica. Abies alba is also well represented, especially in settlements located on the hills. It seems that forest formations were also subjected to anthropization and the main changes included the presence of more open forests and appearance of unstable stands in different successional stages.


      PubDate: 2014-11-27T06:51:21Z
       
  • On the presence of gypsum in the archaeological burial site of Cova des
           Pas (Menorca, western Mediterranean)
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): M. Mercè Bergadà , Rosa M. Poch , Josep M. Cervelló
      The Cova des Pas (Ferreries, Menorca) is a cave that was used as a collective sepulcher during the late Bronze Age (1100–800B.C.). Apart from the archaeological and paleoanthropological attractiveness of the site, it stands out for its excellent preservation of organic remains. In this paper we study the micromorphology of the human and organic remains in order to assess the preservation conditions and in particular to elucidate the presence of gypsum, found mainly on human remains, plant fibers and shrouds. In order to do this, a detailed description of the geological and geomorphological environment of the cave is provided. Gypsum is present as microcrystalline gypsum resulting from diagenetic process in this cave. Due to the lack of any other gypsum source, and based on its location and morphology, the gypsum is interpreted to be a consequence of the oxidation of organic sulphur from the buried bodies which later precipitated with the calcium present in the substrate. The location, morphology and lithology of the deposit have contributed to the arid environmental conditions, thus avoiding the leaching of gypsum and favouring the preservation of the remains and materials of organic origin, which is rare in archaeological contexts.


      PubDate: 2014-11-27T06:51:21Z
       
  • Geoarchaeological and palaeobotanical evidence for prehistoric cereal
           storage in the southern Caucasus: the Neolithic settlement of Göytepe
           (mid 8th millennium BP)
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Seiji Kadowaki , Lisa Maher , Marta Portillo , Rosa M. Albert , Chie Akashi , Farhad Guliyev , Yoshihiro Nishiaki
      This paper presents direct evidence for cereal storage by Neolithic farmers in west Asia. Storage features analyzed this study are circular clay bins that frequently occur at Neolithic settlements (8th millennium cal. BP) in the southern Caucasus. We examined contexts and uses of clay bin features at the Neolithic settlement of Göytepe (Azerbaijan). We analyzed biogenic microfossil evidence (primarily from phytoliths and dung spherulites) and the sediments of the clay bins through micromorphology, in combination with their associated charred macrobotanical remains. While phytoliths and charred botanical remains indicate direct remnants of stored plants, mainly chaffs, micromorphology and the analyses of faecal spherulites allow us to examine depositional and diagenetic processes of the archaeological sediments inside and outside these features. As a result, one of the clay bins was found to retain deposits at its base exhibiting high concentrations of grass phytoliths with relatively high proportions of inflorescences and low percentages of anatomically connected phytoliths in comparison with its upper fill deposits and areas outside of the bin. These finds, combined with the association of the two complete grinding stones inside the bottom of the bin, suggest that the remains of cereal processing activities, specifically dehusking, may have been placed in the bin. This interpretation is corroborated by the recovery of charred rachises and chaffs of wheat and barley as well as micromorphological observations that the bottommost fill of the bin consists almost entirely of grass phytoliths with few very small charcoal fragments and fine amorphous organic matter.


      PubDate: 2014-11-27T06:51:21Z
       
  • Prehistoric bedrock features: recent advances in 3D characterization and
           geometrical analyses
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Dani Nadel , Sagi Filin , Danny Rosenberg , Vera Miller
      Bedrock features such as hewn mortars, cupmarks and cupules are known around the world. In the Levant they first appear in Natufian sites (ca. 15,500–11,500 Cal BP), in large numbers and a wide variety. Traditional archaeological documentation was commonly limited to hand drawing and general photography. In order to better document these features and provide a high-resolution analysis platform, we hereby introduce a protocol based on photogrammetry, 3D modeling and geometrical characterization even of the deepest features. As case studies, we analyze a deep narrow mortar and a bowl-like mortar from the Natufian site of Raqefet Cave, Mt. Carmel, Israel. Using 20 images per feature was sufficient to create a 3D model for each, with a millimeter level of accuracy. We then characterized each by measurements of volume, shape, vertical and horizontal reflective symmetries. The method offers quick and affordable in-field archaeological recording apparatus, facilitating the derivation of high-resolution 3D models. Using the method provides new avenues for bedrock features documentation and analyses, both on intra- and inter-site levels.


      PubDate: 2014-11-27T06:51:21Z
       
  • Parasitology in an archaeological context: analysis of medieval burials in
           Nivelles, Belgium
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): S.E. Rácz , E. Pucu De Araújo , E. Jensen , C. Mostek , J.J. Morrow , M.L. Van Hove , R. Bianucci , D. Willems , F. Heller , Adauto Araújo , K.J. Reinhard
      Coprolites were recovered from three burials near the Grand Place of Nivelles, Belgium. These remains yielded evidence of geohelminth parasitism. The evidence contributes to studies of differential parasite egg preservation related to the taphonomic conditions within the three burials. Using coprolite analysis techniques, parasite egg concentrations were quantified for each burial. Coprolites from the individual in Burial 122 were abnormally large and abundant, indicating an intestinal blockage. Additionally, this individual hosted an extremely high number of parasites evinced by the calculated parasite egg concentrations (Trichuris trichiura = 1,577,679 total eggs; Ascaris lumbricoides = 202,350 total eggs). Statistical analyses revealed a positive and significant correlation between A. lumbricoides egg and T. trichiura egg presence (eggs per gram [epg]: r 2 = 0.583; eggs per coprolite [epc]: r 2 = 0.71). Burial 122 coprolites show a statistically significant increase in egg concentration from the upper colon to the lower colon. Taking extreme parasitism into consideration, the possible causes of the intestinal blockage are discussed. We propose a synergy of high parasite burden and diet contributed to the intestinal blockage. Superior parasite egg preservation was observed in coprolites from Burial 122 compared to Burials 009 and 119. This is due to a variety of taphonomic factors, including a more limited percolation of fluid through the grave sediment.


      PubDate: 2014-11-23T06:33:13Z
       
  • Refining the archaeomagnetic dating curve for the Near East: new intensity
           data from Bronze Age ceramics at Tell Mozan, Syria
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Michele D. Stillinger , Joshua M. Feinberg , Ellery Frahm
      Uncertainty in radiocarbon dates for the Near East, caused by a bimodal distribution of ages due to the natural fluctuations of 14C in the atmosphere, has demonstrated the need for an alternative absolute dating technique to aid in the construction of site chronologies. Here we present a new archaeointensity reference curve model for the first three millennia BCE for the Levant (Syria, Israel, Jordan) for use in archaeomagnetic dating and contribute twelve new intensity results to an increasingly dense geomagnetic field record for the period between 2400 and 1200BCE in the Near East. Archaeomagnetic analysis was conducted on ceramic samples (i.e. pottery sherds) from seven sequential and well-constrained occupational layers at the site of Tell Mozan (Bronze Age Urkesh) in northeastern Syria, resulting in a 90% success rate by specimen (n = 42) for archaeointensity determination and an 86% correspondence between the model and the archaeologically derived dates within one standard deviation (1σ). Age standard deviations as low as ±24 years were obtained after integration with stratigraphic constraints. We also outline the techniques and sampling procedures of archaeomagnetic dating in a manner suitable for the non-paleomagnetist while detailing methodology for archaeomagnetic researchers.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2014-11-23T06:33:13Z
       
  • Specific information levels in relation to fragmentation patterns of shrew
           mandibles: do fragments tell the same story?
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Raphaël Cornette , Anthony Herrel , Emmanuelle Stoetzel , Sibyle Moulin , Rainer Hutterer , Christiane Denys , Michel Baylac
      Archaeological or paleontological remains are often broken and consequently cannot be used as complete specimens, especially for species identification. Consequently, they are poorly studied, even if they could possess species–specific information. Here, we use mandibles of white-toothed shrews and a taphonomic pattern of fragmentation composed of seven pieces to test their validity in species assignment. Using an extant non-ambiguous reference sample of five species, we explore the specific assignments of fragments obtained by a k-NN method of classification, artificially derived from the complete mandible. To describe the form of each piece we use 2D anatomical landmarks and sliding semilandmarks that allow the quantification of objects with no or few true anatomical landmarks. Results show that small fragments still possess species–specific information that is nearly always enhanced when using sliding-landmarks. Moreover, morpho-functional aspects are detected that can affect the species–specific information contained in the fragments.


      PubDate: 2014-11-23T06:33:13Z
       
  • Variability of the stable carbon isotope ratio in modern and
           archaeological millets: evidence from northern China
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Cheng-Bang An , Weimiao Dong , Hu Li , Pingyu Zhang , Yongtao Zhao , Xueye Zhao , Shi-Yong Yu
      Stable carbon isotopic analyses of human skeletal remains may provide fundamental evidence for human dietary reconstruction and subsistence strategies. Millet is closely associated with the emergence and development of agriculture-based societies in northern China. Although often overlooked, baseline values of millet seeds are essential for using stable isotope analysis to understand past human and animal diets. Here, we report spatial and temporal variations in the δ13C values of millets by analyzing modern samples, including seeds and leaves, as well as archaeological samples. The δ13C values of modern foxtail millet seeds range from −13.9 to −11.3‰, with a mean value of −12.3 ± 0.5‰ (1σ, n = 66), while δ13C values for modern common millet seeds vary between −14.3 and −12.0‰, with a mean value of −12.8 ± 0.6‰ (1σ, n = 19). There is an approximately 1‰ temporal change in δ13C for millet grains. Leaves have lower δ13C values than grains, implying that eaters living on different tissues of the same plant could show different isotopic values. These background δ13C values must be considered when reconstructing the dietary history of a millet-based society.


      PubDate: 2014-11-23T06:33:13Z
       
  • Middle Pleistocene hominin occupation in the Danjiangkou Reservoir Region,
           Central China: studies of formation processes and stone technology of
           Maling 2A site
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Shuwen Pei , Dongwei Niu , Ying Guan , Xiaomei Nian , Mingjie Yi , Ning Ma , Xiaoli Li , Mohamed Sahnouni
      Danjiangkou Reservoir Region (DRR) is one of the areas where Acheulean-like stone technology (Mode 2) was reported in central and south China. It is located at the end of the upper reaches of the Hanshui River (the largest tributary of the Yangtze River). Systematic field investigations documented more than ninety Paleolithic sites along the fluvial terraces of the Hanshui and Danjiang Rivers (the latter a tributary of the upper reach of the Hanshui River). Subsequent excavations at more than 30 sites led to the discovery of a large number of Paleolithic stone artifacts in the past decade, showing that early hominins lived in the region at least by the early part of the Middle Pleistocene. However, little is known from the archaeological record about the context of the sites and their formation processes, the technological characteristics of the stone artifact assemblages, and whether they truly belong to Mode 2 technology or just to core and flake technology, and the overall hominin behavioral patterns and adaptation during the Middle to Late Pleistocene. Maling locality 2A (ML2A) is buried in the front edge of the third alluvial terrace of the Danjiang River. Archaeological excavations, undertaken at the site in 2011, recovered 1026 stone artifacts from a red clay deposit. Preliminary OSL dating and geomorphological comparisons between the terraces in the Hanshui River system suggest that the site is dated to the late Middle Pleistocene. Patterns of artifact concentration suggest that the site was buried in secondary context where the stone artifacts were transported by water from a relatively higher location nearby. The artifacts, primarily made on quartzite and quartz cobbles, include cores, whole flakes, various fragments, retouched pieces, two bifaces and a hammerstone. All flaking is by direct hard hammer without core preparation. The majority of flakes in the early stages of core reduction indicate that the cores are not extensively reduced. Choppers are the predominant core category, together with discoids, polyhedrons, and core scrapers. It should be noted that two bifacially flaked cobbles can classed as mode 2 implements. Eleven retouched pieces are recognized, and they were casually modified by direct hammer percussion. Although only two bifaces were excavated from this site, many more are recorded in the larger study area. The ML2A artifact assemblage may be considered as a Chinese variant of an Acheulean-like (Mode 2) industry. It can be deduced that Homo erectus was likely the responsible for manufacturing the stone artifacts.


      PubDate: 2014-11-23T06:33:13Z
       
  • Use of Zanzibar copal (Hymenaea verrucosa Gaertn.) as incense at Unguja
           Ukuu, Tanzania in the 7–8th century CE: chemical insights into trade
           and Indian Ocean interactions
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Alison Crowther , Margaret-Ashley Veall , Nicole Boivin , Mark Horton , Anna Kotarba-Morley , Dorian Q. Fuller , Thomas Fenn , Othman Haji , Carney D. Matheson
      This study presents the chemical analysis of an amorphous organic residue extracted from a 7th–early 8th century CE brass artefact from the trading port of Unguja Ukuu, Zanzibar, Tanzania, hypothesised to be an incense burner. The artefact is a very rare and highly significant find in East Africa, with only one other example being found previously (also at the same site), and likely represents early contact between coastal East Africa and the Indian Ocean world. Chemical analysis of the residue adhering to this artefact was undertaken to confirm its use to burn incense, and to determine whether the resin used was local or exotic to East Africa and thus likely acquired through long-distance trade. The residue extract was analysed by gas chromatography–mass spectroscopy (GC–MS) and identified as Zanzibar copal (Hymenaea verrucosa Gaertn.), a local species that rose to major importance in colonial period trade. The results obtained from this study provide the first direct archaeological evidence for the ancient use of this East African species as an aromatic, suggesting that it might have had a much earlier role in long-distance incense trade than previously demonstrated. This finding also provides insights into local East African engagement with the material culture of the Indian Ocean world.


      PubDate: 2014-11-23T06:33:13Z
       
  • Using airborne LiDAR sensing technology and aerial orthoimages to unravel
           roman water supply systems and gold works in NW Spain (Eria valley,
           León)
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Javier Fernández-Lozano , Gabriel Gutiérrez-Alonso , Miguel Ángel Fernández-Morán
      LiDAR technology, based on Earth's surface scanning, allows the compilation of high resolution digital terrain models. Recently used in archaeological works for the discovery and description of heritage features such as ancient human-made structures and building ruins, it is particularly effective in areas with dense vegetation or difficult access, where surveying becomes complicated. Among its main advantages over other traditional methods of archaeological research, it highlights the possibility of controlling display parameters, which in turn facilitates data analysis and interpretation. In this study we present an integrated LiDAR and aerial photography data analysis in order to obtain a detailed map of ancient mining works within a small sector of the Roman mining district in northwestern Spain. The presence of gold deposits led to intensive extractive work during the first century b.p.t. Although many of the mining activities were focused on the northwestern area of Las Médulas and Omañas, large deposits were also found along the Duerna and Eria river valleys. Our results complement previous work carried out in the Eria area (Valdería), providing new insights into the hydraulic engineering techniques and the geometry of the main Roman exploitations. This work highlights the scope of the ancient mining works and their impact on the landscape, which are much greater and more important than previously thought.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2014-11-23T06:33:13Z
       
  • On the variable relationship between NISP and NTAXA in bird remains and in
           mammal remains
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): R. Lee Lyman
      It has long been recognized that the minimum number of individuals (MNI) and the number of taxa identified (NTAXA) are both often tightly related to the number of identified specimens (NISP) in a collection. The relationship between NISP and NTAXA has been suggested to vary between bird remains and mammal remains for three reasons that concern the rate at which identifiable skeletal parts of each are input to the zooarchaeological record. Rigorous testing of the relationship using 59 pairs of assemblages of bird and mammal remains confirms that the NTAXA of birds increases more rapidly per NISP than does the NTAXA of mammals per NISP. Data also indicate that two of the three proposed reasons (bird taxa outnumber mammal taxa on the landscape; each mammalian individual contributes more NISP than each avian individual) are the likely causes for intertaxonomic variability in the relationship between NISP and NTAXA. The third reason (fragmentation reduces identifiability of bird remains more rapidly than it does mammal remains) has yet to be empirically evaluated but is logical.


      PubDate: 2014-11-19T06:03:12Z
       
  • Ancient DNA unravels the truth behind the controversial GUS Greenlandic
           Norse fur samples: the bison was a horse, and the muskox and bears were
           goats
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Mikkel-Holger S. Sinding , Jette Arneborg , Georg Nyegaard , M. Thomas P. Gilbert
      The Norse Greenlandic archaeological site known as ‘the Farm Beneath the Sand’ (GUS) has sourced many well-preserved and unique archaeological artefacts. Some of the most controversial finds are tufts of hair, which previous morphological-based examination concluded derive from bison, black bear, brown bear and muskox, all species whose natural presence in South Greenland is unlikely. If true, the consequences are potentially significant, as they could imply Viking trading with, or hunting within, North America. To validate these previous findings, we genetically profiled the samples, through mitochondrial 16S DNA analysis. The results revealed that the putative bison was, in fact horse, while the bears and muskox were goat. The results demonstrate the importance of using genetic analyses to validate results derived from morphological analyses on hair, in particular where such studies lead to sensational claims.


      PubDate: 2014-11-19T06:03:12Z
       
  • Editorial Board/Publication/Copyright Information
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 52




      PubDate: 2014-11-15T06:18:34Z
       
  • Individual dietary patterns during childhood: an archaeological
           application of a stable isotope microsampling method for tooth dentin
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Nicole M. Burt
      Diet from the late medieval Fishergate House cemetery site (York, UK) is reconstructed using nitrogen and carbon stable isotope ratio analysis from tooth dentin. Deciduous teeth from 42 subadult individuals (fetal to 5–6 years) were used to reconstruct weaning practices at a population and an individual level. This is the first archaeological use of this microsampling method (dentin ≥.3 mg). This method allows an individual's changing diet to be reconstructed from the fetal period through weaning. The fetal signals show a complicated relationship with adult female ratios, having higher δ15N values than expected. At this site, there is an unusual decoupling between peak mortality (4–6 years) and weaning (2 years). The mean δ15N ratios for weaned children were enriched when compared to the adult females (12.4‰ ± 1.29 and 11.4‰ ± 1.1; statistically significant to p < .05). Early childhood diet is surprisingly high in marine fish and/or pork given the low socioeconomic class of the sample. This is a departure in weaned diet from contemporary communities and may be responsible for the unusual disconnect between peak mortality and weaning. When the individual dietary reconstructions were combined with each individual's rib reconstruction the presence of a true child specific diet was clear starting at approximately 2 years of age. Some individuals diverge from the population norm and have an extended breastfeeding period linked to poor health. The increased resolution of microsampling allows bioarchaeologists to test detailed time depended questions about early childhood diet and health.


      PubDate: 2014-11-15T06:18:34Z
       
  • Reconstructing depositional histories through bone taphonomy: extending
           the potential of faunal data
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Richard Madgwick , Jacqui Mulville
      Reconstructing the sequences of deposition of archaeological material is central to the interpretation of archaeological sites and provides the foundations for how site chronology is understood. Generally stratigraphy provides the most direct evidence for understanding depositional histories. However, in certain instances stratigraphic relationships may be obscured or unobservable and therefore other sources of evidence must be drawn upon for defining deposits and reconstructing sequences of deposition. This is a particular problem at dark earth sites, which are homogeneous in terms of the colour and texture of deposits, and also in artefact-rich samples, which have little sedimentary matrix. This paper explores the potential of a new approach to the analysis of bone taphonomic data for the purposes of deciphering depositional histories when stratigraphy is unobservable. Integral to this method is rigorous statistical analysis of modification data combined with an assessment of the taxonomic and anatomical composition of deposits, in terms of their susceptibility to modification. This facilitates more confident interpretation of modification patterns, as deposit composition can be discounted from responsibility for significant differences. The approach is tested on a sample area of the later prehistoric midden of Potterne, Wiltshire, UK. Through detailed recording and statistical analysis of bone modifications (weathering, gnawing and trampling), this research demonstrates that bone taphonomy is not only useful for identifying distinct depositional events in apparently homogeneous strata, but can also provide detail on the nature of processes responsible for the formation of the deposit.


      PubDate: 2014-11-15T06:18:34Z
       
  • Freshwater reservoir effect and the radiocarbon chronology of the cemetery
           in Ząbie, Poland
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Łukasz Pospieszny
      In the 3rd millennium BC an island on the Łańskie Lake in north-eastern Poland was seasonally settled by a group of people practicing a syncretic burial ritual, exhibiting indigenous and foreign patterns. They left behind a small cemetery consisting of at least six graves. 14C dates made for samples of human bones until 2009 did not coincide with the expected age of the graves. Under a new pilot program in 2010–2013, a series of radiocarbon measurements was made for the human bones and an artefact of red deer antler, along with analyses of the stable isotopes ratios of carbon (δ13C) and nitrogen (δ15N) in the collagen. The results indicate a significant proportion of freshwater food in the diet, which caused the radiocarbon dates to be too old due to the freshwater reservoir effect (FRE). Based on the dating of the antler, unaffected by FRE, and comparative analysis, the reservoir offset for one of the graves was estimated to 740 radiocarbon years. The results, although limited by a low number of investigated humans and animals, indicate indirectly a specialization in the exploitation of local water resources. Such an economic strategy seems to be characteristic for the societies inhabiting the coasts of the Baltic Sea and littoral zones of large lakes in the Final Neolithic and at the beginning of the Early Bronze Age.


      PubDate: 2014-11-15T06:18:34Z
       
  • Geometric documentation of historical pavements using automated digital
           photogrammetry and high-density reconstruction algorithms
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Santiago Martínez , Juan Ortiz , MªLuz Gil
      Historical pavements are intrinsic elements of cultural heritage and require the same protection as monuments. Documenting their geometry is necessary for various reasons beyond heritage and historical considerations. Technicians need accurate data from every paving stone because each is unique. The shape any replacement stones must preserve the original slope to ensure that the runoff to sewers is not modified. This process requires much time and meticulous field measurements. Close-range photogrammetry and automatic image correlation, in particular, automatic digital photogrammetry and 3D reconstruction algorithms, make it possible to retrieve precise metric data on irregular surfaces with a high degree of automation. This paper describes the implementation of the structure from motion based photogrammetry methodology applied to the geometric documentation of historical pavements. Technicians and professionals can improve the protocols for historical pavement analysis and conservation. A case study is presented based on a representative section of a street (Travesía das Dúas Portas) in Santiago de Compostela, Spain.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • An assessment of procedures to remove exogenous Sr before 87Sr/86Sr
           analysis of wet archaeological wool textiles
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): I.C.C. von Holstein , L. Font , E.E. Peacock , M.J. Collins , G.R. Davies
      Strontium isotope analysis (87Sr/86Sr) has been employed as a provenancing tool for archaeological wool textiles. To date, the effect of post-depositional (soil burial environment) contamination on keratin samples, which contain ∼ppm concentrations of Sr, has not been rigorously investigated. We compared published methods for removing exogenous Sr from keratinous textiles, using either: (1) compressed N2 gas, (2) HF(aq) solution (with and without a strong oxidising agent to remove dyestuff) or (3) organic solvents. 87Sr/86Sr ratios and Sr contents were determined in undyed and madder-dyed/alum-mordanted moieties of the same wool textile, buried for up to three years in contrasting environments (marine sediment/fenland bog), and two archaeological textiles recovered in Iceland (one typical and one atypical of local manufacture). Undyed experimental samples had low Sr contents (0.07–0.29 ppm) that were increased by both dyeing (0.14–8.92 ppm) and soil burial (0.11–15.01 ppm). The efficacy of Sr removal was: HF(aq) + oxidising agent > organic solvents > HF(aq) > compressed N2. Unburied samples showed little variation in 87Sr/86Sr ratio between cleaning methods (0.00006–0.00035); buried samples showed greater variation (0.00257–0.00713). Archaeological samples showed Sr contents greater than experimental soil burials (1–118 ppm), and 87Sr/86Sr values consistent with Icelandic groundwater (0.70357–0.70540). No cleaning methods retrieved original (unburied and undyed) 87Sr/86Sr ratios except treatment with compressed N2 in undyed samples. Exogenous Sr from the short term soil burial environment is probably mostly present as particulates. We conclude that 87Sr/86Sr ratios of archaeological wool textiles recovered from wet burial environments do not accurately reflect wool provenance even after cleaning with the methods investigated.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Plant-food preparation on two consecutive floors at Upper Paleolithic
           Ohalo II, Israel
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Ainit Snir , Dani Nadel , Ehud Weiss
      The Ohalo II Upper Paleolithic site was inundated for ca. 23,000 years. A unique and diverse assemblage of seeds and fruit was thus excellently preserved on its brush huts floors. Three successive floors were identified in Brush Hut 1; about 55,000 seeds and fruits were found on its lower floor, Floor III. Food preparation features were found on two of these floors: a hearth in the center of Floor III and a grinding stone in the north of Floor II. Here we analyze the spatial distribution of fourteen prominent plant taxa recovered from Floor III, and compare the results with previously published spatial distribution of the same taxa on Floor II. We describe here the plant remains' distribution around food preparation features – grinding stone (floor II) and a central hearth (floor III), and the groups of taxa which appear on both floors. The similarity in taxa as well as their concentrations on both floors indicates similar activities. We also raise the possibility that the two floors represent two different seasons of occupation – Floor III in winter and Floor II in summer.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Slag remains from the Na Slupi site (Prague, Czech Republic): evidence for
           early medieval non-ferrous metal smelting
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Vojtěch Ettler , Zdenek Johan , Jan Zavřel , Michaela Selmi Wallisová , Martin Mihaljevič , Ondřej Šebek
      Archaeological investigation of the Na Slupi site in the central part of Prague (the capital of the Czech Republic) and located in the vicinity of Vyšehrad Castle has demonstrated the presence of early medieval (12th century) large-scale smelting of non-ferrous metals. This study is focused on the investigation of smelting remains (Pb-rich red and black slags) using a combination of geochemical and mineralogical methods in order to understand the technologies and processes used at this site. Glassy red slags are composed of high-temperature Ca-, K- and Pb-rich silicates (wollastonite, larnite, kalsilite, melilite) and Pb-bearing glass, and are associated with less abundant litharge fragments/red-slag-impregnated furnace walls composed of litharge/massicot (PbO) and Cu2PbO2. They indicate that the cupellation process in small furnaces, rather than in crucibles (open-vessels) was used for Ag refining at the studied site. The black slags, found in much lower quantity at this site, are composed of maghemite, fayalite, clinopyroxene, melilite and glass and are S-poor. We believe that they correspond to waste products from the first stage of Ag purification (prior to final cupellation), where slagging additives such as Fe-rich material, silica sand or ashes could be added to remove impurities. The Pb isotopic composition of both types of slags is similar to the isotopic signature of Pb–Zn ores from the vicinity of Cracow (Poland) and supports the hypothesis that Pb was probably traded between Prague and Poland in the 12th century and used for refining precious metals in metallurgical workshops.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • The age of the olive trees in the Garden of Gethsemane
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Mauro Bernabei
      The olive trees (Olea europaea) in the Garden of Gethsemane were radiocarbon-dated with a view to providing an estimate of their ages and in order to determine whether they are even-aged or were planted at different times. All the tree trunks are hollow inside so that the central, older wood is missing. Furthermore, in several trees, a large void in the trunk's centre has led to its breaking-up into different stumps, which makes it very difficult to reconstruct the shape of each stem's basal area. In the end, only three from a total of eight olive trees could be successfully dated. They are of the same age, having started life all through the 12th century, when, during the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem, the Crusaders were committing themselves to the restoration of Christian memories in the Holy Land. The dated ancient olive trees do, however, not allow any hypothesis to be made with regard to the age of the remaining five giant olives. Nonetheless, the dated olive trees of Gethsemane are a typical example of trees being cultivated in order to emphasize a cultural identity.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Study on production techniques and provenance of faience beads excavated
           in China
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Yong Lei , Yin Xia
      Based on the results of scanning electron microscopy (SEM) with energy dispersive X-ray spectrometry (EDX), about 20 faience beads from several cemeteries discovered since 1970 in China were studied chronologically and typologically. Faience beads excavated in China can be classified into two groups, chemically by composition, and by periods and provenance as: soda-enriched made somewhere on the route from Egypt to central China (11–10th century BCE); and potash-enriched made in China (middle Western Zhou to Eastern Zhou). According to the continuous matrix of inter particle glass (IP glass) and inner micro-structure, the difference between soda- and potash-enriched faience beads was identified, even though the IP glass was badly preserved. The faience beads with potash-enriched glaze and high copper content were in a better state of preservation than those with soda-enriched glaze because of their tight inner structure.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • The evolution of Roman urban environments through the archaeobotanical
           remains in Modena – Northern Italy
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Giovanna Bosi , Anna Maria Mercuri , Marta Bandini Mazzanti , Assunta Florenzano , Maria Chiara Montecchi , Paola Torri , Donato Labate , Rossella Rinaldi
      The paper reports on the urban archaeobotany of Modena, a town that lies on the southern Po Plain of the Emilia Romagna region, Northern Italy. Founded in 183 BC, it was an important Roman colony known as Mutina. The integrated study of micro- and macro-remains, the interdisciplinary archaeological and botanical approach, and the comparison of on-site/off-site records allow the reconstruction of an urban environment of the past. Pollen and macroremains from four archaeological sites located in and around the ancient walls, along with pollen from an off-site trench, were studied with an integrated approach, aimed at reconstructing the main floristic, vegetational and palaeoecological features of the town and its surroundings between the 6th century BC and the 10th century AD. During the Roman age, the natural plant landscape was characterised by wetlands, thinly scattered mixed oak woods, cereal fields, gardens and other human environments; during the Late Roman and Early Medieval age, the woodlands increased. Some currently rare, or locally extinct, species lived in the area. The fragmentation of the landscape has been evident since the Roman times because pieces of the natural environments have survived near lands strongly modified by inhabitants.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Technological tradition of the Mongol Empire as inferred from bloomery and
           cast iron objects excavated in Karakorum
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Jang-Sik Park , Susanne Reichert
      Iron objects from Karakorum, the former capital of the Mongol Empire, were metallographically examined. Most were forged out of bloomery iron, particularly those requiring superior functional properties. By contrast, approximately one third were made from cast iron, with carbon levels approximating either cast iron or ultrahigh carbon steel. The carbon concentration of the bloomery products was controlled either by a carburization treatment directed at the functional parts or by the welding of a pre-carburized steel plate to a low carbon body. By comparison, cast iron-based steelmaking was achieved by subjecting pieces of solid cast iron to a combined thermal and mechanical treatment aimed at accelerating decarburization. Some anonymous cast objects were circulated as a feedstock for this unique process, naturally taking the form of thin plates. Also, the cast products examined were contaminated with substantial amounts of sulfur and silicon, suggesting that they originated from liquid iron smelted at relatively high temperatures using fossil fuel instead of charcoal. Given these findings, it can be concluded that the Mongol Empire took advantage of an effective multi-faceted iron tradition, which combined bloomery-based and cast iron-based iron technologies. It is important to note, however, that the former still remained the key technological tradition dominating the local contemporary iron industry.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • A method for calculating soil pressure overlying human burials
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Glenys McGowan , Jonathan Prangnell
      While damage to the human skeleton due to vertical pressure exerted by overlying soil is a common observation at archaeological excavations, comparatively few studies have attempted to quantify the magnitude of this pressure. As part of a suite of taphonomic studies of a nineteenth-century cemetery located in Brisbane, Australia, a soil loading calculation equation usually employed in civil engineering is used to calculate soil vertical pressure at various depths for both child and adult graves. This cemetery was characterised by extreme vertical compression of coffin burials to the extent that human remains were sandwiched between the coffin base and lid to a thickness of just a few centimetres. Calculations determined that, because of their narrower grave shafts, the burials of children experienced between 40% (1.83 m depth) and 27% (0.91 m depth) less vertical soil pressure than those of adults buried at similar depths. Further calculations for different soil types showed that coarser grained soils such as gravel and sand exerted less vertical pressure than a similar volume of saturated clay due to the amount of air trapped between the coarser grains. It is anticipated that the equation utilised in this study could find widespread applications in the fields of archaeology, physical anthropology, forensic archaeology and cultural heritage management.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Modeling vegetation dynamics in the Southern Levant through the Bronze Age
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Mariela Soto-Berelov , Patricia L. Fall , Steven E. Falconer , Elizabeth Ridder
      We integrate modern spatial distributions of plant geographical regions with paleoclimatic trends to model vegetation change in the Southern Levant over the course of the mid-Holocene. This timespan witnessed the rise, collapse and redevelopment of urbanized society and settlement during the Bronze Age. This study applies GIS and statistical modeling tools (MAXENT) to vegetation data from 1696 historical and modern observation points across the region to chart potential vegetation for the present and at 100-year intervals between 5500 and 3000 calibrated years BP. A macrophysical climate model is used to create vegetation maps based on regional temperature and precipitation data. Environmental dynamics tracked over this time period, including past vegetation, temperature and precipitation, are applied to the interpretation of Bronze Age settlement and social change. Our results reveal a general trend of Mediterranean forest contraction through the Bronze Age. The “4.2 event” (ca. 4200 calibrated years BP) potentially links regional desiccation and urban collapse, and constitutes the last element in a trajectory of reduced potential forest vegetation through the Early Bronze Age. Rapid woodland expansion correlates with abrupt cooling and reurbanization at the outset of the Middle Bronze Age. Modeled vegetation shows minimum forest and maximum desert coverage consistent with a Late Bronze Age “crisis” ca. 3000 calibrated years BP. In comparison to the Bronze Age, modern potential vegetation includes the broadest extent of steppe.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Writing, painting and sketching at Dunhuang: assessing the materiality and
           function of early Tibetan manuscripts and ritual items
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Sam van Schaik , Agnieszka Helman-Ważny , Renate Nöller
      The paintings and manuscripts discovered in the sealed ‘library cave’ in Dunhuang, Western China, contain the earliest surviving examples of Tibetan artistic and scribal practice (9th–10th centuries AD). Despite their importance, their material characteristics have not previously been studied. The present paper discusses the results of the analysis of paper and pigments in a selection of items across a variety of forms and functions: (i) Buddhist manuscripts, (ii) official letters, (iii) hung paintings, (iv) ritual items, (v) banners, and (vi) stencils and preliminary sketches. The material analysis of these items is presented in historical context, to address three research questions. First, whether there is a correspondence between the materials used in the creation of these objects and their geographical origin. Second, in terms of the choices made in the available materials and techniques, whether there is a detectable correlation between materials chosen and the intended function of the objects. Third, whether the characteristics of the objects analysed here be considered to be part of a broader Central Asian artistic and scribal culture. The authors conclude that a local culture of paper and pigment production can be detected in these results, though further research is needed especially on the geographical origin of raw materials for pigments. The results show that artists and scribes made technological choices in paper and pigments depending on the function of the objects they were creating. Finally, understanding of the broader Central Asian context of these results will depend on future analysis of material from other archaeological sites, and comparison with the results of this study.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Through a filter, darkly: population size estimation, systematic error,
           and random error in radiocarbon-supported demographic temporal frequency
           analysis
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): William A. Brown
      Archaeologists are increasingly concerned that the non-linear relationship between the calendric and radiocarbon timelines may introduce anomalous structures into radiocarbon-supported temporal frequency distributions (tfds) – time series data describing temporal fluctuations in the frequency of archaeological, paleontological, or other geological deposits. This concern emphasizes a need for improved middle range theory on tfd formation, addressing the interaction between several stochastic processes. This paper outlines a Monte Carlo simulation designed to explore the influence of several variables on tfd morphology, including the nonlinear calendric-to-radiocarbon age relationship. The results indicate that this non-linear relationship entails greater variance between identically generated tfds over some temporal intervals than others but does not predictably lead to tfd peaks over these intervals as previously suggested. Additional variance between identically generated tfds results from small sample sizes and high values in the underlying TFD. Smoothing the tfd is a solution not only to calibration curve interference but also to sample size-dependent sampling error.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Proteomic identification of adhesive on a bone sculpture-inlaid wooden
           artifact from the Xiaohe Cemetery, Xinjiang, China
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Huiyun Rao , Yimin Yang , Idelisi Abuduresule , Wenying Li , Xingjun Hu , Changsui Wang
      With the emergence and progress of composite tools in the Middle Stone Age, the adhesive became one of the most widely used materials by early human societies. However, the precise composition identification of adhesive in archaeological remains is a real analytical challenge, because the adhesive mainly consists of organic materials that are susceptible to decay during burial process. Of particular interest is to know which animal/plant species were being exploited for glue manufacturing other than for food. The arid climate of the Xiaohe Cemetery, located in Taklamakan Desert, northwestern China, provides favorable conditions for the preservation of organic residues. A bone sculpture-inlaid wooden artifact was collected from the Xiaohe Cemetery, with some semi-transparent yellowish adhesive exposed due to the detachment of an inlaid bone sculpture. In this paper, micro samples of the adhesive were scraped for FTIR (Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy, primary examination) and subsequent proteomic analysis to determine the proteinous component(s) and precise origin(s). The identified tryptic peptides match most closely to known bovine collagen markers, suggesting that this adhesive was an animal glue made from cattle. These results reveal the diverse utilizations of cattle in the Xiaohe Cemetery, which provided not only meat, milk, hides, sinews and dung, but also leftover parts for manufacturing adhesive. This is the earliest evidence of adhesive identified in China up to our knowledge, which sheds light on adhesive development around 3500 years ago.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Observed methods of cuneiform tablet reconstruction in virtual and real
           world environments
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Andrew Lewis , Sandra Woolley , Eugene Ch'ng , Erlend Gehlken
      The reconstruction of fragmented artefacts is a tedious process that consumes many valuable work hours of scholars' time. We believe that such work can be made more efficient via new techniques in interactive virtual environments. The purpose of this research is to explore approaches to the reconstruction of cuneiform tablets in the real and virtual environment, and to address the potential barriers to virtual reconstruction of fragments. In this paper we present the results of an experiment exploring the reconstruction strategies employed by individual users working with tablet fragments in real and virtual environments. Our findings have identified physical factors that users find important to the reconstruction process and further explored the subjective usefulness of stereoscopic 3D in the reconstruction process. Our results, presented as dynamic graphs of interaction, compare the precise order of movement and rotation interactions, and the frequency of interaction achieved by successful and unsuccessful participants with some surprising insights. We present evidence that certain interaction styles and behaviours characterise success in the reconstruction process.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Precise chronology of Polynesian temple construction and use for
           southeastern Maui, Hawaiian Islands determined by 230Th dating of corals
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Patrick V. Kirch , Regina Mertz-Kraus , Warren D. Sharp
      Emergent archaic states in pre-contact Hawai'i used a ritual control hierarchy implemented through a system of temples to manage production, extract tribute, and reinforce the legitimacy of the ruling elites. Based on a limited sample of precise 230Th dates from coral offerings on Maui Island temples it had been hypothesized that this temple system rapidly expanded during the period from A.D. 1580–1640. We tested this hypothesis by obtaining an expanded sample of 39 new 230Th coral dates from temples in Kahikinui District, and one sample from the summit of a cinder cone that likely had ritual significance. Combined with seven coral dates previously obtained, this yields a suite of 46 230Th coral dates from 26 temples in the district. Dates from both surface offerings and corals in architecturally integral contexts (placed in situ during temple construction) strongly agree in documenting a major phase of temple construction in Kahikinui beginning ca. A.D. 1550 and continuing until ca. A.D. 1700. The precise chronology afforded by 230Th coral dating clearly resolves the timing and tempo of temple construction, shows that it corresponded closely with the reigns of Maui rulers credited in Hawaiian traditions with establishing and strengthening the first island-wide polity, and underscores the importance of monumental ritual architecture in the emergence of archaic states in ancient Hawai'i.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Artifact preservation and post-depositional site-formation processes in an
           urban setting: a geoarchaeological study of a 19th century neighborhood in
           Detroit, Michigan, USA
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Jeffrey L. Howard , Krysta Ryzewski , Brian R. Dubay , Thomas W. Killion
      A geoarchaeological study was carried out to assess levels of artifact deterioration occurring in a historic-period urban soil during the 20th century. The study site is a former house-lot in a park created in 1919 by demolition of a residential community in Detroit, Michigan, USA. The results show that despite nearly a century of burial in an urban soil impacted heavily by pollution and other anthropogenic activity, many 19th century artifacts are remarkably well preserved. The observed weathering stability sequence of glass > bone > mortar > plaster > paint is consistent with decreasing solubility product values of the corresponding principal mineral constituent (glass < apatite < portlandite < gypsum < cerrusite). Even severely weathered 19th century nails and mortar can often be distinguished using optical petrographic and SEM-EDAX methods. The excellent state of artifact preservation is attributed to a calcareous soil microenvironment, and artificial compaction which limited the weathering effects of water and oxygen. Artifact preservation was further enhanced by burial beneath a thick biomantle created by the casting activity of an invasive species of earthworm. However, Lumbricus terrestris may now pose the greatest threat to artifact preservation because casting and burrowing activities are decreasing bulk density, and promoting the diffusion of air and water into the soil. Early excavation is recommended to recover artifacts in soils impacted by the combined effects of urban pollution and earthworm burrowing. Anthropogenic microparticles smaller than those normally classified as microartifacts were found to be useful indicators of human occupation.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Consolidation or initial design? Radiocarbon dating of ancient iron
           alloys sheds light on the reinforcements of French Gothic Cathedrals
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Stéphanie Leroy , Maxime L'Héritier , Emmanuelle Delqué-Kolic , Jean-Pascal Dumoulin , Christophe Moreau , Philippe Dillmann
      Large quantities of iron reinforcements, found in most Gothic monuments, are a data source for the interpretation of medieval architecture however their role both in contemporary engineering theory and the technical reality of construction yards has not yet been specified due to the difficulty of directly dating them. We present here an original radiocarbon dating methodology to date metal itself. Radiocarbon dates were measured for iron reinforcements used in specific parts of Bourges and Beauvais cathedrals, two iconic buildings in the development of French gothic architecture. Coupled with archaeometric and archaeological data, the new chronological results illuminate the major and active roles played by iron in the strategy of the building yards. At Bourges, iron was assimilated into the cathedral's construction strategy, whereas at Beauvais iron was integrated from the initial design, added to the monument following the vicissitudes of the building yard, and still used during the modern period. Thus, through decisive advances in radiocarbon dating of iron artefacts, the evolution of medieval architectural and engineering thought and action has been more reliably reconstructed.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Demise of a harbor: a geochemical chronicle from Ephesus
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Hugo Delile , Janne Blichert-Toft , Jean-Philippe Goiran , Friederike Stock , Florent Arnaud-Godet , Jean-Paul Bravard , Helmut Brückner , Francis Albarède
      At the end of the first century BC, Ephesus became the Roman capital of Asia Minor and the most important commercial, religious, and cultural center of the region. In order to evaluate the status of anthropogenic fluxes in the port of Ephesus, a 12 m long sediment core drilled in the Roman basin was investigated to shed light on the paleo-environmental evolution of the harbor using grain size distribution analysis, 14C ages, major and trace element geochemistry, and Pb isotope compositions. With the help of complementary sedimentological data and Principal Component Analysis, five distinct units were identified which, together, reflect the different stages of water history in the harbor. Among the major disruptive events affecting the port were earthquakes and military events, both of which were particularly effective at destroying the water distribution system. Seasonal floods of the Cayster River (Küçük Menderes) were the major source of the silt that progressively infilled the harbor. Silting in was further enhanced by the westward migration of the river mouth. A single major disruptive event located at 550 cm core depth and heralding the development of anoxia in the harbor marks the end of the dynamic regime that otherwise controlled the harbor water throughout the Roman Empire period. This remarkable event may correspond to a major disruption of the aqueduct system or to a brutal avulsion of the Cayster River bed. It clearly represents a major disturbance in the history of life at Ephesus. It is poorly dated, but probably occurred during the reign of Augustus or shortly after. Lead isotope and trace metal evidence suggest that in the four bottom units pollution was subdued with respect to other Pb metal inputs, presumably those from aqueducts and natural karstic springs. Near the top of the core, which coincides with harbor abandonment and the more recent period, anthropogenic Pb contamination is clearly visible in both Pb abundances and isotopic compositions.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Archaeobotanical and isotopic evidence of Early Bronze Age farming
           activities and diet in the mountainous environment of the South Caucasus:
           a pilot study of Chobareti site (Samtskhe–Javakheti region)
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Erwan Messager , Estelle Herrscher , Lucie Martin , Eliso Kvavadze , Inga Martkoplishvili , Claire Delhon , Kakha Kakhiani , Giorgi Bedianashvili , Antonio Sagona , Liana Bitadze , Modwene Poulmarc'h , André Guy , David Lordkipanidze
      Recent excavation at the site of Chobareti (1615 m a.s.l., South Caucasus Mountains) reveals an important Kura-Araxes settlement and eleven burials so far, for which a first multi-proxies approach was conducted to understand both exploitation of plants and human dietary practices in this mountainous area. Thanks to the excavation of several pits, in 2011, a well-reasoned sampling for archaeobotanical analysis, including phytoliths, pollen and non-pollen palynomorphs, charcoal, seeds and other plant macroremains was undertaken. In parallel, human, animal bones and wheat seeds were recovered in order to perform stable isotope analysis (δ13C, δ15N). Results show the strong presence of cereals (especially naked wheat, as a hexaploid form, and emmer), highlighting the role played by cereal growing in the Kura-Araxes farming activities. Plant macroremains, but also phytoliths recovered in pits, reflect processing activities on the site. While animal dung seems to have been used to enhance cereal yields, different herding practices can be suggested by δ15N values. Whereas δ13C values and archaeobotanical data agree for a consumption of C3 plants, with no significant input in wheat for both animals and humans, a homogeneous mixed diet, with a great contribution of animal protein source (meat, secondary products) has been observed.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Prehistoric earth oven facilities and the pathoecology of Chagas disease
           in the Lower Pecos Canyonlands
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Karl J. Reinhard , Adauto Araújo
      Understanding the endemic region of a disease is part of developing a concept of the disease's natural history and its threat to human health in both ancient and modern times. Chagas disease is caused by the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi and has recently been identified as an emergent disease in North America. Ancient endemicity and reemergence has been demonstrated by an examination of a mummy found on the border between Coahuila, Mexico and Texas, USA. This mummified man, who died over 1000 years ago, exhibits the gross pathology of megacolon, which is consistent with Chagas disease. We are now exploring the human behavior that resulted in this parasitic infection. T. cruzi infection exists in a sylvatic cycle involving woodrats (Neotoma spp.) and triatomine insects (Triatoma spp.) in the lower Lower Pecos Canyonlands. The Archaic subsistence strategy may have impacted this life cycle directly through predation on woodrats and through the construction of baking pits. This would have expanded the habitat suitable for both woodrats and triatomine insects. We are proposing that archaeologists develop field methods to test this hypothesis.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Assessing measurement error in paleozoological osteometrics with bison
           remains
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Ryan P. Breslawski , David A. Byers
      Paleozoologists seldom consider how measurement error affects their osteometric data. This error may vary between measured dimensions or with degrees of physical deterioration. We investigate this problem with a paleontological sample of five bison radii displaying different levels of physical deterioration. We instructed twelve students to repeatedly measure two dimensions on each radius. The measurement data reveal between dimension variability in how well students repeat their own measurements and variability in how well they reproduce each other's measurements. Further, for one dimension, physical deterioration affects measurement repeatability and reproducibility. Our results suggest that analysts should exercise more care in selecting which bones they include in metric studies of fossil bison. Further, in paleozoological studies generally, analysts should calculate measurement errors using the most weathered and error prone specimens that they wish to include in a measured sample. When possible, these errors should be a product of repeated measurements by multiple analysts to ensure reproducibility.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Imperial timber? Dendrochronological evidence for large-scale road
           building along the Roman limes in the Netherlands
    • Abstract: Publication date: January 2015
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 53
      Author(s): Ronald M. Visser
      During the Roman period various military structures were build along the limes in the Lower Rhine Region. These military structures were connected with a road. This road has been excavated at various locations. One construction phase of the limes road and related structures was dendrochronologically dated to the autumn or winter of AD 124–125. This phase is probably related to a visit of emperor Hadrian to the region. The dendrochronological material of all contexts from this period shows a striking similarity of the tree ring patterns. This indicates that the wood came from a single region. This region is thought to have been located on the coarse soils between Xanten and Venlo. The timber was thus transported over a distance of approximately one hundred kilometres, making this the earliest example of large-scale long distance timber transport in the Lower Rhine region. The scale of the project justifies the assumption that the Roman state and army were involved. The oaks were most likely transported over water using barges. It should be noted that local wood was also used, indicating that the local woodlands were not yet depleted, but for this large-scale project the Roman army also had to look elsewhere for resources.


      PubDate: 2014-11-11T05:57:46Z
       
  • Optimal foraging, dietary change, and site use during the Paleolithic at
           Klissoura Cave 1 (southern Greece)
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 52
      Author(s): Britt M. Starkovich
      This paper evaluates a long sequence of zooarchaeological remains from Klissoura Cave 1 (southern Greece) within the paradigm of evolutionary ecology. The prey choice, central place foraging, and patch choice models are applied to the dataset in order to understand subsistence shifts related to local resource depression and changes in the intensity of site use from the Middle Paleolithic through Mesolithic. Major trends in prey choice indicate that Middle Paleolithic hominins tended to focus on high-ranked large game resources, while Upper Paleolithic and Mesolithic occupants shifted to lower-ranked small game, fast-moving animals in particular. Overarching shifts in prey use do not correspond to environmental change, so they likely reflect human impacts on local prey populations. Reconstructions of body part profiles indicate that hunters exploited large game animals locally, possibly as they passed through the gorge or drank at a nearby stream. Occupation intensity at the site was highest at the beginning of the Aurignacian, which is reflected by an increase in material culture such as lithics and hearth features, as well as different subsistence strategies. Specifically, bone marrow processing is more important, evidenced by ungulate transport decisions that focus on marrow-rich elements, and an overall increase in marrow processing intensity. Environmental data indicate that conditions in southern Greece were particularly favorable at the beginning of the Aurignacian, which supported rich ungulate faunas and larger populations of their hominin predators in the area. In general, faunal data from Klissoura Cave 1 fit within larger trends found in the Mediterranean over the course of the Late Pleistocene, which indicate that human hunting pressures were on the rise. However, many aspects of prey use are specific to Klissoura Cave 1, reflecting unique environmental and cultural circumstances of southern Greece at various phases in the occupation of the site.


      PubDate: 2014-09-19T00:29:07Z
       
  • Estimating original flake mass on blades using 3D platform area: problems
           and prospects
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 52
      Author(s): Antoine Muller , Chris Clarkson
      This study tests how well the ITMC (Initial-/Terminal-Mass Comparison) method of Clarkson and Hiscock (2011) measures reduction specifically on blades, a largely overlooked flake type in reduction measures. We demonstrate the utility of using platform area to model the extent of reduction on retouched blades. The platform areas of 124 blades were accurately measured in three dimensions using a digital scanner. A positive relationship was observed between 3D platform area and blade mass, with greater platform areas being associated with greater masses. Multivariate regression was used to strengthen the relationship between platform area and initial mass by isolating the variables of platform, termination and indentor type as well as external platform angle. As was proposed by Clarkson and Hiscock (2011), reduction intensity can be estimated by predicting initial blade mass from the relationship between platform area and mass, and comparing this to the observed mass of a retouched blade. Our analysis returned some surprising results that raise questions about the operation of fracture mechanics, particularly for punch blades and those with focalised platforms, and the suitability of the ITMC as a holistic method of flake reduction analysis.


      PubDate: 2014-09-19T00:29:07Z
       
  • Electrochemical reconstruction of a heavily corroded Tarentum hemiobolus
           silver coin: a study based on microfocus X-ray computed microtomography
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 52
      Author(s): Benedetto Bozzini , Alessandra Gianoncelli , Claudio Mele , Aldo Siciliano , Lucia Mancini
      In this paper we report on the electrochemical reconstruction of a Tarentum hemiobolus Ag coin, severely corroded in marine environment. As assessed by conventional analytical tools, most of the initially metallic Ag coin had been converted to AgCl by exposure to the aggressive coastal burial conditions. X-ray computed microtomography proved that only small portions of the artefact had preserved their metallic nature. Since the engraving was preserved partly in the corrosion product bulk and partly in the metallic rests, electrodeposition of Ag from the AgCl layer, under controlled conditions ensuring shape preservation, resulted in the reconstruction of the coin surface with full recovery of the original engraving. Such optimal electrodeposition conditions were identified by a combination of electrochemical and quasi-in situ X-ray microtomography experiments, carried out with artificially corrored engraved Ag wires. Microtomography of the reconstructed coin confirmed the compaction of the external Ag layer and disclosed that the central core of the coin still contains unconverted AgCl. The presence of such a mineralised core does not however impact the numismatic use of the coin and the safeguard of the original engraving.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2014-09-19T00:29:07Z
       
  • Coastal paleogeography of the California–Oregon–Washington and
           Bering Sea continental shelves during the latest Pleistocene and Holocene:
           implications for the archaeological record
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 52
      Author(s): Jorie Clark , Jerry X. Mitrovica , Jay Alder
      Sea-level rise during the last deglaciation and through the Holocene was influenced by deformational, gravitational, and rotational effects (henceforth glacial isostatic adjustment, GIA) that led to regional departures from eustasy. Deglacial sea-level rise was particularly variable spatially in areas adjacent to the Cordilleran and Laurentide Ice Sheets. Such regional variability in sea level due to GIA is important to identify when investigating potential coastal migration pathways used by early Americans. An improved understanding of regional sea-level rise may also be used for predictive modeling of potential archaeological sites that are now submerged. Here we compute relative sea-level change across the California–Oregon–Washington and Bering Sea continental shelves since the Last Glacial Maximum using an ice-age sea-level theory that accurately incorporates time-varying shoreline geometry. The corresponding non-uniform sea-level rise across these continental shelves reveals significant departures from eustasy, which has important implications for improved understanding of potential coastal migration routes and predictive modeling of the location of now-submerged archaeological sites.


      PubDate: 2014-09-19T00:29:07Z
       
  • LA-ICP-MS analysis of Clovis period projectile points from the Gault Site
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 52
      Author(s): Charles A. Speer
      A key tenet of Clovis period hunter–gatherer mobility is the utilization of large ranges based on the appearance of exotic raw materials, particularly chert, in Clovis assemblages. The identification of the sources of chert in Clovis period assemblages is problematic as it has relied on macroscopic properties. Macroscopic characteristics of chert can be highly variable in a single outcrop, occur across very large areas, and have correlates in unrelated and far removed contexts. An instrumental geochemical approach was utilized that potentially offers advances in the capacity to link chert artifacts to their sources. Trace element data was recovered from 33 Clovis period projectile points from the Gault Site (41BL323) using Laser Ablation-Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS). This data was compared to trace element data recovered from 224 primary geologic samples of chert from multiple primary sources across the Edwards Plateau in Texas. The Clovis points were compared to the geologic sources using canonical discriminant analysis to establish group membership at three spatial scales: macro-regional (greater than 500 km), regional (between 30 and 500 km), and local (between 1 and 30 km). It was found at the macro-regional scale that 21 of the 33 Clovis points were to be geochemically similar to Edwards Plateau sources. At the regional scale, 15 of the 21 identified Edwards Plateau Clovis points could be attributed to a particular source. Lastly, only two Clovis points could be identified to particular sources at the local scale.


      PubDate: 2014-09-19T00:29:07Z
       
  • Intra- and inter-individual variation in δ13C and δ15N in human
           dental calculus and comparison to bone collagen and apatite isotopes
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 52
      Author(s): Jelmer W. Eerkens , Alex de Voogt , Tosha L. Dupras , Samuel C. Rose , Eric J. Bartelink , Vincent Francigny
      There are mixed opinions on the suitability of dental calculus for paleodietary reconstruction using stable isotope analysis. We examine δ13C and δ15N values of calculus samples from two regions, central California in the USA and Sai Island in the Sudan. When atomic C/N ratios are less than 12 in calculus, results show positive correlations at both the regional and individual level between stable isotopes of bone collagen and calculus, suggesting these materials track similar dietary behaviors. Correlations are still positive but lower between δ13C values of calculus and bone apatite. Stable isotope ratios of calculus show between 30% and 50% greater variation than bone, are typically enriched in 15N (mean = 2.1‰ higher), and are depleted in 13C relative to bone collagen (mean = 0.8‰ lower) and apatite (mean = 6.4‰ lower). Calculus from multiple teeth was analyzed separately for seven individuals to examine intra-individual variation. Results show that within an individual δ13C varies up to 1.8‰, and δ15N up to 2.1‰, which may explain some of the weak bone-calculus correlations previously reported in the literature. When atomic C/N ratios are greater than 12, calculus correlates more poorly with bone collagen, suggesting these samples should be treated with caution.
      Graphical abstract image

      PubDate: 2014-09-19T00:29:07Z
       
  • Variability in late Holocene shellfish assemblages: the significance of
           large shore barnacles (Austromegabalanus cylindricus) in South African
           West Coast sites
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 52
      Author(s): Antonieta Jerardino
      The archaeological significance of barnacles has been documented in several places around the world, but this remains to be realised for South Africa. In the absence of local ethnographic observations, it was proposed that large barnacles (Austromegabalanus cylindricus) were taken to campsites attached to large black mussels (Choromytilus meridionalis) as part of scavenged beach-stranded fauna. Basic observations available until recently for South African West Coast shell middens showed that the presence of large shore barnacles is chronologically patterned. Some hints regarding transport decisions were also apparent. This paper examines the variability in large barnacle abundance through time and space using mollusc and crustacean shell samples from eight late Holocene sites situated at different distances from rocky shorelines. Modern knowledge on the ecology of collected species is used to interpret inter-assemblage variability. This study shows that barnacle abundance depends on at least three aspects, namely: the degree of wave exposure from which barnacles and other shellfish were collected, possible shifts in the main season of shellfish collection in the last 1700 years, and field processing before transporting shellfish loads to camps.


      PubDate: 2014-09-19T00:29:07Z
       
  • High potential of calcareous tufas for integrative multidisciplinary
           studies and prospects for archaeology in Europe
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 52
      Author(s): Julie Dabkowski
      Calcareous tufas are continental carbonates from open-air conditions, specific to wet and warm periods. They contain abundant remains of fauna and flora fossilised in situ and may accumulate regularly over thousands of years offering high stratigraphic resolution for palaeoenvironmental reconstructions. As they are mainly comprised of calcite, tufas allow direct and precise dating as well as geochemical reconstructions of past climates. Additionally, recent investigations have highlighted their strong potential for archaeology as several studied sequences provided high quality record of in situ prehistoric levels. Tufas are thus a unique archive in continental areas for development of synergic multidisciplinary investigations of past human societies and associated environmental and climate evolution. We emphasise that calcareous tufa are key-deposits to investigate human–environment–climate interactions during interglacial periods, from Lower Palaeolithic to Antiquity, in Europe.


      PubDate: 2014-09-19T00:29:07Z
       
  • New ways to extract archaeological information from hyperspectral pixels
    • Abstract: Publication date: December 2014
      Source:Journal of Archaeological Science, Volume 52
      Author(s): Michael Doneus , Geert Verhoeven , Clement Atzberger , Michael Wess , Michal Ruš
      Airborne remote sensing for archaeology is the discipline that encompasses the study of archaeological remains using data collected from an airborne platform by means of digital or film-based aerial photography, airborne laser scanning, hyperspectral imaging etc. So far, airborne hyperspectral scanning or – more accurately – airborne imaging spectroscopy (AIS) has occupied only a very small niche in the field of archaeological remote sensing: besides reasons of cost, the common archaeologically-insufficient ground-sampling distance can be considered the main limiting factor. Moreover, the technical processing of these data sets with a high level of potential redundancy needs specialized software. Typically, calculation of band ratios and a principal component analysis are applied. As a result, the few practical applications of archaeological AIS have not been entirely convincing so far. The aim of this paper is to present new approaches for analysing archaeological AIS data. The imagery under study has a ground-sampling distance of 40 cm and covers the Roman town of Carnuntum (Austria). Using two algorithms embedded in a specifically developed MATLAB® toolbox, it will be shown how the extracted archaeological information can be enhanced from high-resolution hyperspectral images. A comparison with simultaneously acquired vertical photographs will indicate the specific advantages of high-resolution AIS data and the gain one can obtain when exploiting its potential using any of the newly presented methods.


      PubDate: 2014-09-19T00:29:07Z
       
 
 
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