Results for grid:
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: grid unit
DEFINITION: A system of perpendicular lines and equally spaced points to form a rectangle which is used as a frame of locational reference on an archaeological sites. A grid is usually defined by its distance and direction in reference to a datum point. Excavations units are often planned and recorded by grid. Grids are often aligned with either the anticipated site layout or with a landform upon which the site sits. Many archaeological sites are surveyed by measuring from a grid enclosing the site. It is a rectilinear system of X, Y coordinates which is established over the area to be excavated so that spatial control can be maintained.
- grid amplitude
- CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: A method of defining the location of features and artifacts on a site by plotting from a reference point oriented to magnetic north or some other known point. Meridian lines run north-south and baselines run east-west on a grid square.
- grid layout
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: grid system, grid method, box system, grid planning
DEFINITION: The practice of dividing an archaeological site into squares for ease of recording features and objects during excavation. The term also refers to the two-dimensional intersecting network defining the squares in which archaeologists dig; usually set out with strings, stakes, and a transit. Often a square trench will be cut within each grid square, separated by a balk from each neighboring trench. Each square is suitable for excavation by two or three people. Advantages of the method are in the creation of a number of readily available sections on the site, the ease of spoil removal (along the balk), and the control which can be exercised over excavators. On open sites with little stratigraphy above the rock surface, the method is often unnecessary. The balks in the grid method may also obscure many of the important stratigraphical relationships, or make impossible the recognition of structures. This technique allows the fast recording of very large areas, but is not as accurate as triangulation for the pinpointing of small objects and features. The use of grid planning and triangulation together often satisfies most of the combined needs of speed and accuracy.
- CATEGORY: ceramics
DEFINITION: A flat ceramic plate used in the final stage of detoxifying manioc. After grating and pulping, thin disks of manioc are baked on the griddle into a kind of unleavened bread. Although there are other methods of preparation, use of the griddle is especially common in northeastern South American contexts, where the artifact signifies agricultural practice.
- site grid
- CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: A set of regularly spaced intersecting north-south and east-west lines, usually marked by stakes, providing the basic reference system for recording horizontal provenience (coordinates) within a site.
- time-space grid
- CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: A method synthesizing temporal and spatial distributions of data and used in the culture historical approach based on period sequences within culture areas.
- Wheeler box-grid
- CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: An excavation technique developed by Sir Robert Eric Mortimer Wheeler from the work of General Pitt-Rivers. It involved the retaining of intact balks of earth between excavation grid squares so that different stratigraphic layers could be correlated across the site in the vertical profiles.
- Arauqinoid or Araquinoid
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Arauqin
DEFINITION: A ceramic series created to compare the cultures of the Venezuela / Antilles area which flourished in the Middle Orinoco River region from c 500-1500 AD. Soft-textured gray vessels tempered with spicules of freshwater sponge and geometric incised designs on the interior beveled rims of bowls were characteristic. Collared jars with appliquéd human faces and coffee-bean eyes were also common and pieces of griddles have been found at most sites. The series replaces the Saladoid and Barrancoid in some areas.
- arbitrary sample unit
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: antonym: nonarbitrary sample unit
DEFINITION: A subdivision of data within a defined area of excavation, such as a sample unit that is defined by a site grid, which has no specific cultural relevance.
- area excavation
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: extensive excavation, open excavation, open-area excavation
DEFINITION: A method of excavation in which the full horizontal extent of a site is cleared and large areas are open while preserving a stratigraphic record in the balks between large squares. A gradual vertical probe may then take place. This method is often used to uncover houses and prehistoric settlement patterns. Area excavation involves the opening up of large horizontal areas for excavation, used especially where single period deposits lie close to the surface. It is the excavation of as large an area as possible without the intervention of balks and a grid system. This technique allows the recognition of much slighter traces of ancient structures than other methods. On multi-period sites, however, it calls for much more meticulous recording since the stratigraphy is revealed one layer at a time.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: baulk
CATEGORY: term; technique
DEFINITION: A strip (usu. 10-25 centimeters) of unexcavated earth left in place between excavated units, pits, or trenches for the purpose of revealing the stratigraphy of an excavation for as long as possible. The balk provides a constant reference to the original pre-excavation level of the site, and also carries all sections along or across the site. In an excavation carried out according to the grid method, 25% of the site may consist of balks. Balks may also serve to facilitate access to different areas of the excavation.
- CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: Large ceramic griddles used to toast manioc flour in Central and South America
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: burg
DEFINITION: Any Anglo-Saxon stronghold or fortification; a term used for the defended settlements built by King Alfred of Wessex as a system of defense in the 9th century (known as the burghal system). Threatened by Viking (Danish) incursions, Alfred (and later his successors) built small fortified towns where the population could take refuge when threatened. Excavations in many burhs, such as Wareham, Tamworth, Wallingford, Devon, Bury, and Cricklade, show wide palisaded bank and v-shaped ditch with turf and timber revetments. Many of the burhs were also developed as market towns and gridded streets were laid out within a number of them.
- CATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: The largest and most impressive town of the Middle Mississippi Culture, on the Illinois bank of the river near East St. Louis. Cahokia Mounds State Historic and World Heritage Site, the location of this large prehistoric Indian city, is to the northeast. It constituted probably the largest pre-Columbian (c AD 900-1300) community north of Mexico in the Mississippi floodplain. The scale of public works in the culture can be estimated from remains of the largest of the Mississippi earthworks, Monk's Mound near Cahokia, which measures 1,000 feet (300 m) long, 700 feet (200 m) wide, and 100 feet (30 m) high -- which is larger than the Great Pyramid of Egypt. The magnitude of such public works and the distribution of temples suggest a dominant religious cult and a series of priest-rulers who commanded the services of a large population and the establishment of artist-craftsman guilds. In addition to large-scale construction, there is evidence of long-distance trade, elaborate ceremonial activity, and possibly astronomical observation. There is evidence of around 10,000-38,000 inhabitants and a town of warehouses and workshops, residential housing arranged along a grid of streets, and open plazas and 100 manmade mounds (burial and platform types). One of the smaller mounds contained rich burials, including a corpse was wrapped in a robe sewn with more than 12,000 shell beads; caches of arrowheads, polished stone, and mica; and his retainers -- 6 men at his side and 53 women in a mass grave nearby. Artifacts include flint hoes, shell and limestone-tempered pottery, and engraved stone tablets sometimes etched with the motifs of the Southern Cult.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: pl. cardines
DEFINITION: The term for the second major road of a Roman town, fort, or camp -- the main north-south axis. The term seems to originate with Roman agricultural surveying practice, where cardo denotes the principal north-south axis of the site, about which other measurements 'hinge'. When a site is divided, the cardo is used with the other principal axis, the decumanus (east-west) to sectioned into squares. From the 4th century BC, this system was adopted for the Roman grid system used for army camps and new towns. The technique was taken from the Etruscans and the Greeks, both of whom used grid town-planning. The cardo maximus was the main north-south road.
- CATEGORY: term
DEFINITION: The practice of dividing up the territory surrounding a new Roman colony to match the city's grid plan of square blocks, normally 2,330 feet (710 m) on a side. The centuriation process was done for land distribution to the settlers and also for inventory. Signs of it were first detected in northern Africa from the 1830s, through surviving crop marks and roads, and have been found, mainly through air photography, in Trier and Homs (Syria) and large areas of northern Italy and Tunisia.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Ch'ang-an
DEFINITION: The capital of both the early Han and Tang dynasties of China, both walled cities which are located adjacent to each other. There was a grid street layout and gate wall enclosure in the Tang period. The royal palace was positioned in the north for the first time and Chang'an became the model for urban development in 7th century AD Japan and Korea.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Chanhudaro, Chanhu-daro
DEFINITION: A city of the Harappan civilization of the 3rd millennium BC that is located in the Indus Valley south of Mohenjo-Daro in modern Pakistan. First excavated in the 1930s, it was characterized by a gridiron street plan and drainage system of typical Harappan towns. Evidence was found for the processes of sawing, flaking, grinding, and boring of stone beads. Occasional copper or bronze weapons of foreign" type are found in late contexts at Chanhu-daro. Excavation also showed that like Mohenjo-Daro Chanhu-Daro had been inundated by floods: it was twice destroyed and subsequently rebuilt on a different plan. After the end of the Indus Valley civilization it was reoccupied by the Jhukar culture."
- CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: Spanish term for a flat ceramic griddle used for cooking tortillas
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: modern Ansedonia
DEFINITION: A town on west coast of Italy, north of Rome, that was a Latin colony founded in 273 BC. There is well-preserved massive polygonal masonry surviving in the city walls, the forum, basilica, citadel, capitol, baths, and temples -- as well as remains of the grid street plan. The site was abandoned in 1st century BC.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Cusco
DEFINITION: The political and religious capital of Inca Empire, located in the southern highlands of Peru. Although previously occupied, the site was first settled by Inca in Late Intermediate period, c 1200 AD. After 1438, Pachacuti planned and rebuilt a city metropolis. It was a ceremonial center rather than a population center and stood at the intersection of the four administrative quarters of the empire (called Tawantinguyu). There were great palaces around the Huacapata (Holy Place), the Sunturhuasi, a tower which stood in the square, and the Sun Temple (Coricancha/Curicancha). The city was planned on a grid system and Cyclopean masonry walls of some streets, such as Callejon de Loreto, still exist, as do those of the nearby fortress of Sacsahuaman. A system of stone conduits brought residents water from various river sources.
- datum point
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: datum
DEFINITION: The point on an archaeological site from which all measurements of level and contour are taken. It is the reference point used for vertical and horizontal measurement. It can be chosen at random, at a place from which all or most of the site can be seen, and should be tied in to the national standard, usually sea level, by reference to the nearest survey point. Depths of features, of objects found in features, or simply contours, are leveled in with reference to the datum point, and are usually recorded as being a certain height 'below local datum'. Should variations in contour or the extent of the site prove too great for a single datum point, another can be used as long as it is leveled in with reference to the first. A site grid and excavation units are laid out or measured with reference to this point.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: decumanus maximus
DEFINITION: East-west street of a Roman camp or town. The square grid layout of the two was basically identical and the decumanus usually ran from the gate in the middle of one wall to the gate opposite. The decumanus maximus was the main east-west street. The main transverse street was known as the cardo; the administrative block or forum was at the intersection of the two. Other decumani parallel to the decumanus maximus cross the transverse cardines to divide the area into insulae.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Dura Europos, Doura-Europus
DEFINITION: A ruined Syrian city in the Syrian desert, on the middle Euphrates River, that was originally a Babylonian town (Dura), but rebuilt as a military colony about 300 BC by the Seleucids and given the second name of Europus. About 100 BC, it fell to the Parthians and became a prosperous caravan city. It was annexed by the Romans in AD 165 and was a frontier fortress. Shortly after 256 AD, it was overrun and destroyed by the Sasanians. The remains at Dura-Europus give an unusually detailed picture of the everyday life there; and the inscriptions, reliefs, and architecture give much information about the mixing of Greek and Semitic culture. Two structures dating to the 3rd century AD contain extensive wall paintings. There also is an irregular enceinte (enclosure), a city grid system, and many sanctuaries and temples dedicated to the many deities of the mixed population.
- CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: The systematic and scientific recovery of cultural, material remains of people as a means of obtaining data about past human activity. Excavation is digging or related types of salvage work, scientifically controlled so as to yield the maximum amount of data. It is the main tool of the archaeologist. The excavation of a site, however, involves the destruction of the primary evidence, which can never be recovered. Excavation should therefore never be undertaken lightly or without an understanding of the obligations of the excavator to the evidence he destroys. The first decision is whether to excavate a site at all, a question of particular interest when sites are being rapidly destroyed by farming methods and road and town building. The nature and scale of the undertaking is the next decision. If time and/or money is short, sampling of the site may be all that is possible. If a large-scale excavation is to be undertaken, the approach will be either area (open) excavation, grid method, quadrant method, rabotage, sondage, etc. Removal of the topsoil will either be carried out by hand or machine. After an initial plan has been made of all visible features before excavation, digging proceeds according to the dictates of the site: sections may be taken across areas of feature intersection, or across individual features. A permanent record of the whole process should be kept: plans, drawings, notes, photographs. Excavation is only the first part of the process. For years, excavation was regarded as merely a method of collecting artifacts. Pitt Rivers in Britain and Petrie in the Near East first placed emphasis on evidence rather than artifacts, not what is found but where it was found relative to the layers of deposit (stratigraphy) and to other objects (association) -- the context. The excavator can only justify his destruction if it is done with meticulous care so that every artifact, be it an ax or a posthole, is discovered and if possible preserved; if it is recorded accurately enough for all information to remain available after the site has disappeared; and if this record is quickly made available by publication. In short, excavation is the digging of archaeological sites, removal of the matrix, and observance of the provenience and context of the finds therein, and the recording of them in a three-dimensional way.
- excavation unit
- CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: A basic area of horizontal control in an excavation; usually a test pit, trench, or a standard-sized square (grid).
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Gandhara grave culture complex
CATEGORY: site; culture
DEFINITION: A culture of the 2nd and 1st millennia BC in the valleys of northwestern Pakistan -- and the Achaemenid (Persian) satrapy of this name. This culture was important in passing Persian ideas on to the civilizations of the Ganges valley. It also introduced Hellenistic art styles to India. Western influence is also apparent in the grid town planning found at the Gandharan cities of Charsada and Taxila. Characteristic burials are in tombs consisting of two small chambers, one on top of the other; the lower chamber contained both the burial (inhumed or cremated) and the grave goods, while the upper chamber was empty. The population, which bred livestock and carried out agriculture, were accomplished metalworkers, producing tools, weapons, and ornaments of copper, bronze, gold, silver, and iron. The pottery within the grave goods was mostly a red or gray plain burnished type.
- CATEGORY: database design
DEFINITION: Pertaining to data that is input to a GIS database using a common mapping reference (e.g. UTM grid) so that the data can be spatially analyzed
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: computer rectification
DEFINITION: The process of assigning map coordinates to image data and resampling the pixels of the image to conform to the map projection grid.
- CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: A Roman surveying instrument which traced right angles. It was made of a horizontal wooden cross pivoted at the middle and supported from above. From the end of each of the four arms hung a plumb bob. By sighting along each pair of plumb bob cords in turn, the right angle could be established. The device could be adjusted to a precise right angle by observing the same angle after turning the device approximately 90 degrees. By shifting one of the cords to take up half the error, a perfect right angle would result. It was used for laying out the grid patterns of towns and forts, for road construction, and for centuriation.
- Harappan civilization
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Indus Valley civilization
DEFINITION: One of the great civilizations of antiquity, located in Pakistan and northwest India in the 3rd millennium BC. Nearly 300 settlements of the civilization are known: two large cities (Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa), and a number of smaller towns and villages (Chanhu-Daro, Judeirjo-Daro, Kalibangan, and Lothal). The Harappan civilization was characterized by a high level of architectural, craft, and technical achievement. We know little of the political, social, and economic structure of the civilization because, although it was literate, the script remains undeciphered. Like other early civilizations in Mesopotamia and Egypt, the Harappan civilization was based on the cultivation of cereal crops (plus rice and cotton), probably with irrigation. Among the most distinctive achievements of this civilization are the architecture and town planning, with the use of true baked brick for building, and cities and towns laid out on a grid-iron street plan, perhaps the earliest examples of town planning in the world. Among crafts, the most outstanding were the seals, mostly made of steatite and decorated with carefully executed incised designs. The Harappan civilization came to an end early in the 2nd millennium, either as a result of environmental factors (excessive flooding) or as a result of invasions by Aryan intruders. It is divided into three phases -- Early, Mature (Urban), and Late (Post-Urban) and emerged from Punjab and Baluchistan regions.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Nara Palace
DEFINITION: The site of an 8th century AD palace and the capital of the Ritsuryo state in Nara Prefecture, Japan. The seat of the government from 710-784, the grid-city plan includes remains of some 500 buildings, including royal residences, administrative quarters, warehouses, and workshops. Of particular interest are over 20,000 inked thin rectangular pieces of wood (mokkan), which served as office memoranda and labels attached to tributes from the provinces.
- Indus civilization
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Indus Valley civilization, Harrapan civilization
DEFINITION: The earliest known urban culture of the Indian subcontinent, identified in 1921-1992 by its two capitals -- Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro -- both in modern Pakistan. It was also the most extensive of the three earliest civilizations, the other two being Mesopotamia and Egypt. It was one of the greatest civilizations of antiquity, but its origins are obscure. By around 2300 BC, the Indus civilization was fully developed and in trading contact with Sargonid Sumer. Radiocarbon dates from several sites support an origin c 2600 BC, and suggest that by 2000 BC the civilization was in marked decline. The Indus River seems to have played a significant part, as many sites show deposits left by frequent catastrophic floods. Exploitation of the vegetation, particularly for the baking of enormous quantities of brick, caused the decline of the countryside. The final collapse seems to have been due to hostile attack. A few inhumation cemeteries have been found associated with the gridiron-plan cities and there were elaborate drainage systems, also. The site of Mohenjo-Daro had a great bath, assembly hall, and other monumental buildings. There was widespread use of an undeciphered hieroglyphic script and standard weights and measures. The economy was based on mixed agriculture and humped cattle were the most important domestic animals. The pottery was mass-produced and plain. Artistically the finest products were square steatite seals, carved with local or mythical animals and brief inscriptions. The civilization's effect on the later culture and religion of India seems to have been considerable.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: pl. insulae
DEFINITION: In Roman antiquity, a block within the grid pattern of a Roman city; a block of buildings in a Roman camp or town planned on the grid principle. The term refers to an area of a town, typically enclosed by four streets, and probably corresponding to a smaller subdivision on the familiar cardo/decumanus grid -- or a large tenement-type house or apartment block, as seen at Roman Ostia.
- CATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: A site in India near the extinct Ghaggar/Hakra River with Early and Mature Harappan settlements. A Chalcolithic settlement similar to Kot Diji and the site underlying the Indus city at Harappa has given radiocarbon dates of c 2750 BC. An intact plowed field has been discovered, indicating that the plow was already in use before the main Harappan period. About 2450 a small town of the Indus civilization was built over it, which flourished to c 2150 BC. In the Mature Harappan period, the site consisted of a citadel and a lower town, both defended, and laid out, in the normal Indus Valley grid pattern.
- CATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: A Harrapan town, one of the most important of the southern Indus Civilization sites, at the head of the Gulf of Cambay, northwestern India. Besides typical Indus structures like a walled citadel, granary, drainage system, and a grid street plan, it had a dock faced with baked brick. There were residential and craftworking (shell, bone, bead, copper, gold) areas. The site was important for its sea trade, as shown by the discovery of a Dilmun seal from the Persian Gulf. There were also contacts with the Chalcolithic cultures of the Deccan peninsula and the practice of rice cultivation which had been introduced from further east. There was much local non-Harappan pottery in the Mature Harappan levels. Radiocarbon dates place it in the later 3rd millennium BC (c 2400-2100 BC).
- magnetic surveying
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: electromagnetic surveying
DEFINITION: A technique for the location of archaeological features adapted from techniques used in geological surveying. It is based on the fact that features with thermo-remanent magnetism, like hearths or kilns, or features with a high humus content, like pits or ditches, and iron objects, distort the earth's magnetic field from the normal. Instruments such as the proton magnetometer or the differential fluxgate gradiometer are used to measure those disturbances, and by plotting the results, a map of the features can be built. The ways in which the different types of feature distort the magnetic field vary, though they can all be picked up on the same instrument. Hematite or magnetic, present in most clays, have a small magnetic effect when unburnt, since the grains point in random directions and cancel each other out. Once heated to about 700? C or more, the grains line up, increasing the magnetic effect and causing an anomaly in the magnetic field. This thermo-remanent magnetism is also the basis for magnetic dating. The presence of modern iron as in wire fences can cause problems with this technique of location; if the area to be surveyed is clearly crossed with power lines or fenced with iron posts, a resistivity survey may be more suitable. The method of surveying used requires a grid to be measured out on the site and readings to be taken at regular intervals. The nature of the site may prevent such a grid being laid out, for instance if it is heavily wooded, and magnetic survey may not be possible on these sites. It is one of the most commonly used geophysical surveying methods.
- CATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: A village site south of Barranquilla on the Gulf coast of Colombia with distinctive pottery with incised, punctated, and adorno" (appliqué) modeled decoration dating 1120 BC to AD 100. Pottery griddles indicated that manioc or cassava was grown."
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: cassava, yuca
DEFINITION: A starchy root plant native to the tropical lowland zone of South America, where it was cultivated along with other root crops. Its origin may have been in Venezuela before 2500 BC and it became established in the Andes and reached the Peruvian coast before 2000 BC. Manioc can grow under various conditions, but only in the lowland forest did manioc retain its position as the main food plant. On archaeological sites, large clay disks are often interpreted as griddles on which were baked flat cakes made of a flour prepared by roasting grated manioc roots and juice-catching pots for the prussic acid they contain. The plant underwent elaborate detoxification process (including grating, pulping, draining and finally cooking) before consumption. It was the staple diet throughout most of Amazonia and the Caribbean at the time of European contact. Manioc is the source of tapioca.
- CATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: An Etruscan occupation site, 25 km from Bologna, northern Italy, in the Reno valley. It was probably set on an important Etruscan trade route. Its 6th-century BC phase was characterized by plain, primitive dwellings and had evidence of metalworking. In a 5th-century BC stage, the city appears to have been laid out afresh upon a grid system, with blocks of houses on carefully paved streets. The town shows sophisticated drainage, both road and domestic. There are the workshops, foundries, and kilns bordering the principal street. Its acropolis shows evidence of three temples. Marzabotto's occupation, and possibly destruction, by the Boii in the 4th century BC seems to have brought an end to the settlement.
- CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: The netting of an archaeological sifter, esp. the coarseness or spacing of the strands of the net; (with preceding numeral) a measure of this, usually indicating the number of openings per unit length, or the largest size of particles that can pass through the grid
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Mohenjo-Daro
DEFINITION: One of the two capitals of the Indus civilization, the best known of the Mature Harappan cities, located in the Sind region on the right bank of the Indus in Pakistan. Radiocarbon dates and corroboration with Mesopotamian data date the capital to about 3000-1700 BC. The city, covering approximately 2.5 square km, was laid out on a grid plan, the oldest recorded. The larger blocks, separated by broad streets with elaborate drains, were subdivided. It was the largest of all the Indus Valley sites, and like other Indus Valley settlements, Mohenjo-Daro consists of two parts: a lower town in the east, overlooked by a high artificial mound or citadel on the west side. Traces of mud and baked brick defenses have been found. Within these an assembly hall, 'college', great bath, and granary were excavated. Numerous craft installations were in the lower town, for pottery, beadmaking, shell working, dyeing, and metalworking. Artifacts provide the basic definition of the Mature Harappan material culture for pottery styles, seals, weights, bead forms, metal forms, figurines, etc. There are many flood deposits, which many times overwhelmed the city. Mohenjo-daro was abandoned c 1700/1600 BC, apparently after a massacre, as in the latest layers groups of skeletons were found lying in houses and in the streets. The other capital, Harappa, was 400 miles away.
- CATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: A site on Sinu River in western Colombia, which has two ceramic periods -- Momil I 1000-500 BC and Momil II of 500 BC-1 AD. The site is also significant for its evidence of the transition from manioc to maize farming. Momil I had stone tools, both percussion and pressure flaked, incised and stamped pottery, and circular-rimmed griddles. Momil II had troughed metates, similar to those used in Mesoamerica. New vessel forms, hollow figurines, and the earliest known occurrence of negative resist painting in Colombia, also appear.
- open excavation
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: area excavation; open-area excavation, extensive excavation
DEFINITION: The opening up of large horizontal areas for excavation, used especially where single period deposits lie close to the surface. It is the excavation of as large an area as possible without the intervention of balks and a grid system. This technique allows the recognition of much slighter traces of ancient structures than other methods. On multi-period sites, however, it calls for much more meticulous recording since the stratigraphy is revealed one layer at a time. In this method of excavation, the full horizontal extent of a site is cleared and large areas are open while preserving a stratigraphic record in the balks between large squares. A gradual vertical probe may then take place. This method is often used to uncover houses and prehistoric settlement patterns.
- Ostionoid, Ostiones
- CATEGORY: ceramics
DEFINITION: One of three associated ceramic series in the Greater Antilles area. Seen as transitional to Chicoid and Meillacoid, the Ostionoid appears in c 650 AD in Puerto Rico, where it overlays Saladoid materials. Vessels are generally smooth, finished in red monochrome slip, often with plain tabular lugs. The introduction of items like petalloid celts, potter stamps, and zemis indicates external influence, possibly Mesoamerican. Agriculture activity is indicated by the presence of griddles used in the preparation of manioc.
- CATEGORY: culture
DEFINITION: Early state on the Korean peninsula, c 300-662 AD, that succeeded Mahan and competed with Koguryo and Silla. Its first capital was near Mongch'on Fortress near Seoul, then Ungjin (Kongju) and Sabi (Puyo). There are stone-stepped and earthen mounded tombs. A gridded city was built in the 7th century.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Bounomos
DEFINITION: The ancient capital of King Archelaus of Macedonia at the end of the 5th century BC (until 168 BC) and birthplace of Alexander the Great. It is in northern Greece, northwest of Thessaloníki. The city flourished under Philip II, but, after the defeat of the last Macedonian king by the Romans (168 BC), it became a small provincial town. Excavations have revealed houses with colonnaded courts and rooms with mosaic floors made with small natural pebbles of various colors, dating from the late 4th century BC. The town had a rectangular grid plan; under the streets are terra-cotta pipes for distributing fresh water.
- CATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: Small Hellenistic Greek town in Asia Minor, important as settlement of 4th century BC. The lower city was laid out in a Hippodamian grid pattern. There was an acropolis, city walls, agora, bouleuterion, prytaneion, stadium, gymnasium, theater, and temples. It is important for these examples of 4th-century BC and Hellenistic urban architecture. Priene was probably one of the very early Ionian Greek colonies.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: provenance
DEFINITION: The source, origin, or location of an artifact or feature and the recording of same. It is the position of an archaeological find in time and space, recorded three-dimensionally. The horizontal reference system is usually some form of grid tied to a reference datum; the vertical dimension is reference to a vertical datum. I.e., the three-dimensional position of an archaeological find in time and space and recorded from a known datum point at an archaeological site.
- resistivity surveying
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: resistivity survey
DEFINITION: A geosurvey survey technique that measures the electrical resistance of the ground for the location of buried features and structures. Any electrical exploration method in which current is introduced in the ground by two contact electrodes and potential differences are measured between two or more other electrodes. It relies on the principle that different deposits offer different resistance to the passage of an electric current depending largely on the amount of water present. A damp pit or ditch fill will offer less resistance, stone wall foundations more, than the surrounding soil. It is one of the most commonly used and least expensive geophysical surveying methods. Readings are taken in a grid-pattern of points all over a suspected site. Variation of resistance through a site is caused mainly by differences in the amount of water contained in pore spaces of deposits and structures. The outline of features may be seen if the readings are plotted as a plan. Although the technique is generally known as 'resistivity surveying', most archaeological surveys use only the ground resistance (in ohms). It compares well with magnetic surveying, as the instruments are simple and cheap and also because modern features such as power cables, iron scrap, and standing buildings do not affect the readings.
- Saladoid series
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Saladero, Salader
DEFINITION: A group of related pottery styles found along the Orinoco River in Venezuela and named after the type site at Saladero. Saladoid pottery is thin and fine, painted with white or red designs, especially white-on-red; the utilitarian wares include flat plates or griddles for making manioc bread. The everted bell, often with tabular lugs, is the favored vessel form. The Saladoid tradition may have begun before 2000 BC and lasted in some area up to c 1000 AD. Some Saladoid groups migrated to Trinidad, Virgin Islands, and the Antilles during the early centuries AD, and this movement may represent the Arawak colonization of the West Indies.
- sample, quadrat
- CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: An archaeological research design in which the sampling element is a square or rectangular grid.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: sectioning, section drawing
DEFINITION: In excavation, the exposing of a deposit vertically to reveal the stratigraphy of a site or details of a particular feature. A balk is left across a feature or a complex of features, or a hole is cut out of a feature and trimmed to a flat face in which layers and changes in soil color may be examined. Sections automatically occur when the grid method of excavation is used, on all four sides of each trench. The term is also applied to the drawing of the vertical record of the stratification of a site or feature. A section drawing is a two-dimensional rendering, at a constant scale, depicting archaeological data and matrix as seen in the wall of an excavation. Advocates of open-area excavation prefer not to have standing sections on the site; instead of drawing sections after the whole area has been excavated, they record the profile of each deposit as it is excavated and construct what are known as 'cumulative' or 'running sections'.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: ancient Calleva Atrebatum
DEFINITION: An important Roman-British town which was a node on the Roman road system in Britain, located in Hampshire, England. All that stands now is the impressive wall of the 1st century AD. Within it were a forum, inn, church, four temples, two baths, grid street plan, shops, and houses. An amphitheater existed outside the wall. Most of the antiquities recovered from the site are in the Reading Museum; the local Calleva Museum (1957) illustrates the life of the Roman town.
- CATEGORY: culture
DEFINITION: A kingdom traditionally dated 57 BC-668 AD, the oldest of the monarchies of the Three Kingdoms period, and including the Unified or Great Silla period of 668-935, the golden age of Korean art. It eventually came to cover most of southeastern Korea east of the Naktong River. The original territory of the Silla kingdom, the modern North Kyongsang province, is a mountain-secluded triangle. Silla was in competition with the Koguryo and Paekche until 668 and had relations with Japan's Yamato. When it unified in 668, its capital remained in Kyongju. At that site are large mounded tombs of the 5th-6th centuries with fine gold work. It became a gridded city in the 7th century and the Anapchi pond was built.
- spatial histogram
- CATEGORY: measure
DEFINITION: A stepped statistical surface or three-dimensional histogram used to display variations in abundance over a gridded space.
- CATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: Pre-Roman port on the northern Adriatic, at the mouth of the River Po in Italy. The town was probably Etruscan from the late 6th-early 5th century BC. Together with a settlement at Adria, Spina was an important link between the markets of Etruria and the Poplain, and Greek shipping in the Adriatic. Cemeteries (Valle Trebba, Valle Pega) have yielded large amounts of Greek pottery, especially Athenian Red-Figure Ware, terra-cottas, fine Etruscan bronzes, western Greek and Etruscan jewelry, faience and amber. The town also kept a Treasury at Delphi. The site had palisades, earth ramparts, and a network of canals as well as a grid plan. At its height, it may have shipped agricultural produce and slaves. Soon after 400 BC, Spina was sacked by the Gauls. With the collapse of its market and the silting of its port it became obsolete.
- surface survey
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: site surface survey
DEFINITION: A method of data collection in which archaeological finds are gathered from the ground surface of sites and then evaluated. Surface survey helps to establish the types of activity on the site, locate major structures, and gather information on the most densely occupied areas of the site that could be most productive for total or sample excavation. There are two basic kinds of surface survey: unsystematic and systematic. The former involves fieldwalking, i.e. scanning the ground along one's path and recording the location of artifacts and surface features. Systematic survey less subjective and involves a grid system which is walked systematically, thus making the recording of finds more accurate. Surface survey usually includes the mapping of features. The study of the distribution of surviving features, and the recording and possible collecting of artifacts from the surface.
- systematic sampling
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: systematic sample
DEFINITION: A probabilistic sampling technique which uses a grid of equally spaced sample units, for example, selecting every other square. It is a refinement of random sampling in which one unit is chosen, then others at regular intervals from the first. The sample incorporates randomness and determinacy by specifying that the random selection of a case example has to occur within a certain group of cases.
- systematic survey
- CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: A less subjective form of survey, in which the survey area is divided into sectors or grids and these are walked systematically, thus making the recording of finds more accurate.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Roman Tarquinii; Etruscan Tarkhuna
DEFINITION: Great Etruscan city in Tuscany, Italy, famous for tombs with a series of grave painting from the 6th-1st centuries BC and the remains of a wall and base of the great central temple of the 4th-3rd century BC. Traditionally the earliest of the cities of Etruria, there was an earlier Villanovan settlement (10th-7th century BC). It is also important for its contribution to early Rome of that city's early kings, the Tarquins, as well as a cultural and technological heritage. It did not come under Roman control until 353 BC. The Villanovan burials are especially rich in bronze artifacts, particularly horse and chariot items, shields, and helmets. The Etruscan painted tombs are usually approached by steeply descending dromoi and they show scenes of funeral banqueting and games, and later the demons of the underworld. Sarcophagi mostly have relief decoration. The city shows traces of a grid plan, tufa city walls, and the remains of the 4th-3rd century BC temple (Ara della Regina).
- CATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: One of the two main cities of the Achaemenid empire (satrapy of Gandhara), located in Pakistan and flourishing in the 5th-2nd centuries BC. It rose again as an Indo-Greek city from the 1st century BC through the 1st century AD. It was surrendered to Alexander the Great in 327 BC and then destroyed c 500 AD probably by White Huns. The extensive remains of Taxila include Bhir mound, which conceals the pre-Hellenistic town of the 6th century BC and later; Sirkap, an Indo-Greek 'new town' with a rectilinear grid of streets laid out in the 2nd century BC; and Sirsukh (Sirsuleh), another new town founded by the Kushans in the 1st century AD.
- three-dimensional recording
- CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: A system in which the two dimensions of the coordinate grid record the topographical findspot of an object. The third dimension is a measured elevation or spot-height of the absolute level at which an object was found.
- Universal Tranverse Mercator
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: UTM
DEFINITION: A grid-based system whereby north and east coordinates provide a location anywhere in the world, accurate to one meter. The UTM system divides the surface of the Earth between 80
- vector format
- CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: The holding of data within a map layer as a grid of cells.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: modern St. Albans
DEFINITION: Romano-British town across from St. Albans, Hertfordshire, England. Before the Roman conquest, Verulamium was the capital of Tasciovanus, prince of the Catuvellauni; under Roman rule it soon was made a municipium. Destroyed by Boudicca (or Boadicea; queen of the Iceni) in 60-61 AD, it soon regained its prosperity. Among its ruins are the city grid plan, the forum, a theater associated with a temple of Romano-Celtic type, a market hall, two triumphal arches, fragments of the town wall, and many well-appointed houses with fine mosaics and wall paintings. It was still of some importance when it was visited by St. Germanus in 429, but thereafter was replaced by St. Albans. It is thought to be the third largest Roman town in Britain.
- Wheeler, Sir Robert Eric Mortimer (1890-1976)
- CATEGORY: person
DEFINITION: English archaeologist who revolutionized excavation standards and invented the stratigraphic grid system technique. Adopting and developing further the methods of General Pitt-Rivers, Wheeler emphasized the vertical site record and its importance in reconstructing the history of a site. He founded Britain's Institute of Archaeology of London University and similar institutions in other countries, especially reorganizing Indian and Pakistani archaeology. He worked at Verulamium, Maiden Castle, Harappa, Arikamedu, St. Albans, Colchester, Stanwick, Taxila, Charsada, Mohenjo-Daro, and Brahmagiri and was the director-general of the Archaeological Survey of India. His most important contribution was in popularizing archaeology, through his writings and especially through television programs.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: ancient Viroconium; Roman Viroconium Cornoviorum
DEFINITION: Site of a Roman town in southwestern England, founded in the 1st century AD and from c 90 AD the tribal capital (civitas) of the Roman province of Cornovii. In 130, it was enlarged to add a grid street plan and a forum in honor of Hadrian. The town became the fourth largest in Roman Britain. There is also a basilica, Roman and Romano-Celtic temples, bath buildings, shops, housing, and an aqueduct.
- SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Roman Vetera Castra and Colonia Ulpia Traiana
DEFINITION: Roman legionary camp and civilian settlement on the Rhine near Wesel, Germany, and the confluence with the River Lippe. The Augustan-period camp had earth ramparts, palisades, timber buildings, a hospital and a quay, with some later stone construction. It was given colonia status by emperor Trajan and subsequently became the principal city of Lower Germany (Germania Inferior). A rectangular grid street system, town walls, gates, bath buildings, amphitheater, porticoed temple, artisans' quarters and housing have been uncovered.
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