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-excavationlevel 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.
balk excavation method
CATEGORY: technique DEFINITION: The excavation of an area of a site leaving vertical pillars or walls in place, thus allowing better correlation between excavations with predefined strata.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Vazirabad, Bactra CATEGORY: site DEFINITION: A village in northern Afghanistan that was formerly Bactra, the capital of ancient Bactria. A settlement existed at the site as early as 500 BC and it was associated with Zoroaster until captured by Alexander the Great in c 329 BC. It was then made the capital of the Greek satrapy of Bactria, but in succeeding centuries fell to various nomadic invaders, including the Turks and Kushans, until it was decisively taken by the Arabs in the 8th century. Balkh then became the capital of Khorasan. Under the Abbasids and Samanids, it was a capital and a center of learning and known as the Mother of Cities". Balkh was completely destroyed by the Mongols under Genghis Khan in 1220. It lay in ruins until its capture by Timur in the 15th century. The alleged discovery of the tomb of 'Ali the Prophet Muhammad's son-in-law in neighboring Mazar-e Sharif (1480) once again reducedBalkh to insignificance. Balkh was incorporated into Afghanistan in 1850. Balkh was a caravan city on the Silk Route and a major outpost of Buddhism. Very little is known about the pre-Islamic city."
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: primary baulk CATEGORY: term DEFINITION: The balks surrounding the four sides of an area or a square.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Apennine Bronze Age CATEGORY: culture DEFINITION: The Bronze Age culture of the Italian peninsula, lasting from c 2000-800 BC. The culture's pottery was distinctively dark and highly burnished, and decorated with incised and punctuated bands filled with white inlay. The handles, often single, were elaborate and included crested, horned, and tongue types. The people seemed to depend on pastoral economy and stock breeding in the mountains which give the culture its name. Trade and a more mixed economy has evidence at some sites -- Ariano, Liparis, Luni, Narce, and Taranto -- and the culture had some influence from the Balkans. Some inhumation cemeteries are known, but burials are rare. Bronze tools, though in use, are rarely found until very late in the period.
CATEGORY: site DEFINITION: A rock shelter (Aq Kupruk II) and open site (Aq Kupruk III) on the Balkh River in northern Afghanistan. It is one of the richest Palaeolithic sites in that area. Aq Kupruk II had a single late Palaeolithic deposit with a bladeindustry (including microliths) with a radiocarbon date of c 14,600 BC. Aq Kupruk III had two deposits, one with artifacts similar to II and a lower one without microlithics. The presence of domesticated sheep and goats at Aq Kupruk has been dated to 8000 BC and that of cattle to about 6000 BC. Sickle blades, peaked stone hoes, chisels, hand mills, and pounders suggest the collection and preparation of wild grains, if not cultivation.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: extensive excavation, open excavation, open-area excavation CATEGORY: technique 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 prehistoricsettlement patterns. Areaexcavation 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 gridsystem. 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: Aurignac (adj) CATEGORY: culture; chronology DEFINITION: A series of Upper Palaeolithic cultures in Europe that existed from about 35,000 to 20,000 years (dates also given as 38,000-22,000 years) ago. They were characterized by their use of stone (flint) and bone tools, refinement of those tools, and the development of sculpture and cave painting. The culture is named for the type site Aurignac, in southern France, where such artifacts were discovered. In France it is stratified between the Châtelperronian and the Gravettian (and before the Solutrean and the Magdalenian), but industries of Aurignacian type are also found eastwards to the Balkans, Palestine, Iran, and Afghanistan. At Abri Pataud there is a radiocarbon date of pre-31,000 BC for the Aurignacian, but there are possibly earlier occurrences in central and southeast Europe (Istállóskö in Hungary, Bacho Kiro in Bulgaria). There is still considerable dispute about the extent to which the Aurignacian is contemporary with the cultures of the Perigordian group in southwest France. The sites are often in deep, sheltered valleys. Split-based bone points, carinates (steep-end scrapers), and Aurignac blades (with heavy marginalretouch) are typical of Aurignacian. Aurignacian is also important as the most distinctive and abundantly represented of the early Upper Palaeolithic groups.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Bactriana, Zariaspa CATEGORY: site; culture DEFINITION: An ancient country (satrapy) lying in a fertile region between the mountains of the Hindu Kush (Paropamisus) and the Amu Darya (ancient Oxus River) in what is now part of Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan. Bactria was especially important between c 600 BC-600 AD, as a center for meeting and trading between the East (China) and West (Mediterranean). It was a satrapy of the Achaemenid empire and was conquered by Alexander the Great in 329 BC. Many Greeks settled in Bactria in the Seleucid period which followed. . Consequently, Greek influence on the culture of central Asia and northwestern India was considerable, especially in art, architecture, coins, and writing. Bactria's capital was Bactra (also called Bactra-Zariaspa; probably modern Balkh, ancient Vahlika).
block excavation method
CATEGORY: technique DEFINITION: The excavation of an area of a site without leaving intervening walls or pillars, which exposes contiguous areas of floors better than the balk method.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Thraco-Cimmerian CATEGORY: culture DEFINITION: An ancient nomadic people of the Russian steppes, north of the Caucasus and Sea of Azov, driven out by the Scythians into Anatolia toward the end of the 8th century BC. As they retreated, they destroyed Phrygia, Lydia, and the Greek cities on the coast and then caused havoc in Anatolia. Their decline soon began, and their final defeat may be dated c 637 or 626, when they were routed by Alyattes of Lydia. Their relatives, the Thracians, retreated similarly into the Balkans. The Cimmerian origin is uncertain, but they may have been responsible for Catacomb and Kuban cultures, c 1700 BC onwards. The Cimmerians' destruction across southwestern Asia has been detected archaeologically at many sites. Our knowledge of them has come from the writings of Herodotus and the Assyrian records.
CATEGORY: culture; site DEFINITION: A late Eneolithic / Late Copper Age culture in the eastern Balkans, mainly in southern Rumania and dating to the 3rd millennium BC. The sites were small, short-lived settlements suggesting agriculture and fishing as well as movement for seasonal reasons. Most burial sites used inhumation rites, although cremation is found. Cotofeni sites have a rich potteryassemblage with handled mugs and pitchers with lentil-impressed decoration.
CATEGORY: culture DEFINITION: An Early Neolithicculture of Romania and Moldova, part of the complex of Balkan Early Neolithic cultures. Cris settlements were flat and open.
CATEGORY: site DEFINITION: A Roman province on the east coast of the Adriatic, roughly corresponding to modern Yugoslavia. The Roman expansion began c mid-2nd century BC and ended around the 9th century AD when it became the province of Illyricum. The fall of the Dalmatian capital, Delminium, in 155 brought Roman civilization to the country. On the collapse of the Western Roman Empire, Dalmatia fell under the power of Odoacer in 481 and later under that of Theodoric. It was a battlefield during the wars between the Goths and the Byzantine emperor Justinian I and valuable to Rome for its mineral deposits, land routes and harbors, and legendary soldiers. Illyricum was soon subdivided into two provinces, known by the Flavianperiod as Dalmatia and Pannonia. The name Dalmatia probably comes from the name of an Illyrian tribe, the Delmata, an Indo-European people who overran the northwestern part of the Balkan Peninsula beginning about 1000 BC.
CATEGORY: site; culture DEFINITION: The type site of a Middle Neolithicculture of southeastern Romania, of the late 5th millennium BC. Contemporaneous with the Vadastra, Vinca A/B, and Karanovo III, Dudesti sites are typically short-lived occupations, defined by storage pits and post-holes. Most sites are limited to the first terraces of major river valleys. The largely undecorated pottery is a derivative of the dark burnished waretradition of the south Balkans.
First Temperate Neolithic
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: FTN CATEGORY: culture DEFINITION: A term sometimes used to describe the earliest farming cultures in the temperate zone of Europe (and sometimes in other areas). In southeast Europe from c 5400-4500/4300 BC, there was the Starcevo (eastern and northern Yugoslavia), Körös (eastern and southwest Hungary), Cris (west and lowland Rumania), Kremikovci (northwest Bulgaria), and Karanovo (central and southern Bulgaria). The regional groups are differentiated by their individual painted wares, but the group of cultures is unified by non-ceramic traits such a miniature polished bone spoons, fired clay lip-plugs, rod-head figurines, and stamp seals. The vast majority of early FTN sites are located in the major river valleys of the Balkans, either as tell settlements or as short-lived flat sites. Hoe or digging-stick agriculture combined with cattle husbandry was the economic base of most FTN settlements.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: grid system, grid method, box system, grid planning CATEGORY: technique 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.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Gumelnitsa, Gumeilnita CATEGORY: culture DEFINITION: A Late Neolithic/Copper Age culture of eastern Romania, Bulgaria, and northern Greece (eastern Balkans) c 3800-3000/2500 BC. There were permanent villages of rectangular houses forming low tells, use of copper and gold, and a flourishing painted pottery. The pottery was often decorated with graphite designs. Gumelnita can be derived from the Hamangia, Boian, and Maritza cultures which preceded it in this area. The culture parallels the partitioning of the closely related Karanovo V and VI culture in Bulgaria. The Gumelnita represents the climax of the Neolithicsequence in south Rumania.
CATEGORY: term DEFINITION: The practice of removing and preserving human heads. Headhunting arises in some cultures from a belief in the existence of a material soul. Headhunting may go back to Paleolithic times, as in deposits of the Late PaleolithicAzilianculture found at Ofnet in Bavaria. In Europe, the practice survived until the early 20th century in the Balkan Peninsula.
CATEGORY: site DEFINITION: A location described in classicalwriting, inhabited from about the 10th century BC by the Illyrians, consisting of the northwestern part of the Balkan Peninsula. West of the Vardar and Morava valleys, south of the Roman province of Pannonia and west of Moesia, at its height Illyria extended from the Danube River southward to the Adriatic Sea and from there eastward to the Sar Mountains. The Illyrians, descendants of the Hallstattculture, were divided into tribes, each a self-governing community with a council of elders and a chosen leader. The last and best-known Illyrian kingdom had its capital at Scodra (modern Shkodër, Albania). One of its most important rulers was King Agron (second half of the 3rd century BC), who, in alliance with Demetrius II of Macedonia, defeated the Aetolians (231).
CATEGORY: site DEFINITION: A tellsite in eastern Bulgaria which has given the basic chronological sequence from the Early Neolithic, and much of the Eneolithic, to the Bronze Age, 7th to mid 2nd millennium BC, of the eastern Balkans. There were seven major phases of occupation. Karanovo I is the earliest Neolithic and forms part of the complex of cultures that include Starcevo, Cris, and Körös. The architecture was wattle-and-daub and eventually the 50-60 early, scattered, square huts were replaced by rectangular, larger, plastered, and painted ones. Karanovo II also represents the First Temperate Neolithic level. Karanovo III has Middle NeolithicVeselinovo levels, with dark burnished and carinatedpottery. Level IV is the Kalojanoven level and V represents Marica levels, with graphite painted wares and excised pottery -- both are contemporaneous with the Late NeolithicVincaculture of the western Balkans. Level VI is the main EneolithicGumelnita occupation with graphite painted wares and coppermetallurgy. Level VII is the Early Bronze Age level. Almost all the period designations have become known as cultures in their own right (e.g. the Karanovo III culture).
CATEGORY: site DEFINITION: One of the earliest hoards discovered in the Balkan Neolithic of the Cucuteni-Tripolye culture in Moldova. The Karbunahoard of 852 objects was discovered in a Tripolye A-B1 pot and it includes some of the earliest castcopper items, shell, marble, and bonejewelry. The date of deposition is disputed c 3800/3500 BC and the hoard has been interpreted as either a shaman's kit or as a communal ornament collection.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Linearbandkeramik; LBK; Danubian I CATEGORY: culture DEFINITION: The earliest Neolithicculture of central Europe, western Ukraine to eastern France, between c 4500-3900 BC. It is so named after curvilinear incised patterns which make its pottery so recognizable. This was the first farming culture in central Europe, based on graincultivation and domesticated livestock, lasting to 3200 BC on its periphery. The Linear Potterycorearea stretches from eastern Hungary to the Netherlands, including settlement concentrations in the Pannonian Basin, Bohemia, Moravia, central Germany and the Rhineland. A second rapid expansion occurred eastwards round the northern rim of the Carpathians, from Poland to the Dnieper. Linear Pottery is characterized by incised and sometimes painted pottery (3/4 sphericalbowl) with linear designs (curvilinear, zigzag, spiral, and meander patterns), polished stone shoe-last adzes, and a microlithic stoneindustry. Small cemeteries of individual inhumations are common as are longhouses with rectangular ground plans. The remarkable uniformity that characterized the Linear Pottery culture in its corearea broke down after c 4000 BC and the cultures that emerged -- Tisza, Lengyel, Stroke-Ornamented Ware, Rossen etc. -- were more divergent in characteristics. It is most possible that it derived from the Körös culture of the northern Balkans.
CATEGORY: fauna DEFINITION: A large, powerfully built cat of the family Felidae, and the second largest of the big cats (after the tiger), now found wild only in Africa south of the Sahara. A few hundred live in Gir Forest National Park in Gujarat state, India. It has been, since earliest times, one of the best known of wild animals. During the late Pleistocene Epoch (1,600,000 to 10,000 years ago), lions had an extremely wide geographic distribution and ranged over all of North America and Africa, most of the Balkans, and across Anatolia and the Middle East into India. They disappeared from North America about 10,000 years ago, from the Balkans about 2,000 years ago, and from Palestine during the Crusades. It is possible that the connection between the king and the lion stemmed from the hunting of these animals by the tribal chiefs of the Predynastic period in Egypt.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Maglemosan CATEGORY: culture DEFINITION: The first Mesolithicculture of the north European plain, found in Scandinavia, the northern Balkans, northern Scotland, and northern England, and lasting from c 9000/8000-5000 BC. The way of life was adapted to a forest and river/lakeside environment. Much has been preserved in waterlogged deposits. Thus more is known about the Maglemosianindustry than about other tool industries of the same period. The tool kit included microliths, woodworking tools such as chipped axes and adzes, picks, barbed points, spearheads of bone or antler, and fishing gear. Wooden bows, paddles, and dugout canoes have been found, and the dog was already domesticated. The Maglemosianindustry was named after the bog (magle mose, big bog in Danish) at Mullerup, Denmark, where evidence of the industry was first recognized. The Maglemosianindustry was also highly artistic, with decorative designs on tools and decorative objects, such as pendants and amulets.
CATEGORY: culture DEFINITION: Late Neolithicculture of the eastern Balkans, contemporary with Vinca C, between 4000-3700 BC. It is characterized by the materials from Karanovo's Layer V, with dark pottery whose surface tended to be covered by either incised or excised lines which were filled with white paint after firing.
CATEGORY: site DEFINITION: Province of the Roman Empire in the lower Danube area, extending from Serbia to the mouth of the Danube and between Dacia and Thracia. Moesia was conquered by Marcus Licinius Crassus in 30-28 BC and became a Roman province in 15 AD. In the 1st century AD, a series of defensive walls and forts in southern Romania were built to guard the Moesia-Dacia frontier. Moesia was fairly prosperous because of the wheat from the Black Sea area. Agriculture and fruit-growing flourished, and there was mineral wealth in the Balkan Mountains. The province suffered heavily from barbarian invasions in the 3rd century AD, and when Dacia was abandoned about 270, its inhabitants were largely transferred to Moesia. Moesia remained part of the Eastern Roman Empire until the 7th century.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: area excavation; open-area excavation, extensive excavation CATEGORY: technique 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 gridsystem. 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 prehistoricsettlement patterns.
CATEGORY: site DEFINITION: Neolithic settlement site of the Cucuteni-Tripolye culture in the Ukraine. Found were smelted copper ingots suggesting trade contacts with the Carpathian-Balkan region.
CATEGORY: technique DEFINITION: A procedure for excavating a circular feature such as a mound, barrow, pit, etc. by laying out trenches. Material is extracted from four quarters of the feature, starting with the two opposite each other and ending with the other two. The quadrants are slightly offset, so that the outer face of the east balk of one is continuous (in reverse) with the outer face of the east balk of its opposite, going through the center of the feature. After the recording of the sections, the balks may be removed and the rest of the center excavated. Before the complete removal of the feature, it allows a look at all four quarters, at two complete cross-sections, and at part of the center, allowing a better interpretation of the stratigraphy of the site.
CATEGORY: flora DEFINITION: A cereal grass and its edible grain that is used to make rye bread and rye whiskey. Rye cultivation probably originated in southwestern Asia about 6500 BC, migrating westward across the Balkan Peninsula and over Europe. Today rye is grown extensively in Europe, Asia, and North America. It is mainly cultivated where climate and soil are unfavorable for other cereals and as a winter crop where temperatures are too cool for winter wheat. The plant, which thrives in high altitudes, has the greatest winter hardiness of all small grains, growing as far north as the Arctic Circle.
CATEGORY: culture DEFINITION: A people originally of Iranian stock who migrated from Central Asia to the Ural Mountains between the 6th-4th century BC and eventually settled in most of southern European Russia and the eastern Balkans. These nomadic tribes were related to Scythians and became a political and cultural force whose influence extended into central Asia and Transcaucasia, as well as into western Europe where the Sarmatians challenged the Romans before themselves being driven back by the Huns c 370 AD. Sarmatian art was strongly geometric, floral, and richly colored. They made jewelry in the form of rings, bracelets, diadems, brooches, gold plaques, buckles, buttons, and mounts and exceptional metalwork was found in the tombs, including gold openwork plaques, bronze bracelets, spears, swords, gold-handled knives, and goldjewelry and cups. The Sarmatians were also very experienced in horsemanship and warfare.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: sectioning, section drawing CATEGORY: technique 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'.
CATEGORY: site DEFINITION: Settlement mound in eastern Macedonia, northern Greece, which has produced an important stratigraphy for the chronology of the north Aegean. Sitagroi began with a Middle Neolithic occupation dated c 4500 BC, and continued into the Early Bronze Age in the 3rd millennium BC. The site was chosen for excavation to clarify the relationships between the cultural sequence in the Aegean and the Balkans during those times. The excavation established that finds of Gumelnitatype preceded by a considerable period of time finds of Troy I type. The site also supports claims for the primacy of southeast European metalworking over that of Anatolia and that coppermetallurgy was an independent development in the Balkans.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Sopot Lengyel CATEGORY: culture DEFINITION: Eneolithicculture of the northwest Balkans (north Bosnia and east Slavonia, Yugoslavia) of c 4300-3700 BC. The pottery of this group shares affinities with the dark burnished waretradition of the south Balkans and the incised and monochrome tradition of the north Balkans. Few cemeteries are known, but there is plenty of settlement evidence (tells, open sites). It is viewed as a regional variant of either the Lengyel or the Vincaculture.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: spondylus CATEGORY: fauna DEFINITION: Mediterranean mussel shell from which ornaments (bracelets, beads, disks) were made, found all across the Balkans, up the Danube Valley, and even on the Saale and the Main. It was traded for this purpose into central Europe in the Early Neolithic. Spondylus shell ornaments occurred in contexts of the First Temperate Neolithic and Linear Pottery culture (Czechoslovakia, Germany, the Netherlands).
CATEGORY: technique; feature DEFINITION: Sections on the faces of balks which are left standing during the course of an excavation.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: Starcevo culture CATEGORY: site; culture DEFINITION: Earliest Neolithicculture of the western Balkans, named for a settlement site on the north bank of the Danube opposite Belgrade, Serbia. It is part of a broad complex of cultures that includes Karanovo I, Kremikovci, Körös, Maritza, and Cris -- c 6000-5000 BC. Settlements in the southern Balkans are generally tells; in Serbia they are usually flat sites. It has given its name to a widespread potterystyle and it seems to represent the earliest farming occupation of the area, although hunting and food-gathering remained important. The pottery is often coarse and rusticated, but finer fluted and channeled wares and simple painted ones are found in later levels. A bonespatula, perhaps for scooping flour, is a distinctive type for the culture. It developed into the Vincaculture.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: stripping excavations CATEGORY: technique DEFINITION: A method of excavating whereby a large horizontal area is dug instead of a deep vertical one; clearing excavations in which large areas of overburden are removed to reveal horizontal distributions of data without leaving balks. This excavation layout is designed to investigate a large area for a modest outlay of effort. It has the disadvantage that no longitudinal section is available for study, only transverse ones, and that the site can never be seen in its entirety. It is a little used method with the introduction of technology.
Thrace or Thracia
CATEGORY: site DEFINITION: Ancient and modern region of the southeastern Balkans; in ancient times, the part north of Greek settlement extending to the Black Sea. In the 5th century BC, it included modern Bulgaria and Romania. Most Thracians became subject to Persia in c 516-510 BC. It was assimilated (356-342 BC) by Philip II of Macedon and later provided Philip's son, Alexander the Great, with troops during his conquests. In 197 BC, Rome assigned much of Thrace to the kingdom of Pergamum. In the 1st century BC, Rome became more involved in the affairs of the region and emperor Claudius I annexed the entire Thracian kingdom in 46 AD. Thrace was subsequently made into a Roman province. The emperor Trajan and his successor, Hadrian, founded cities in Thrace, notably Sardica (modern Sofia) and Hadrianopolis (modern Edirne). In about 300 AD, Diocletian reorganized the area between the Lower Danube and the Aegean into the diocese of Thrace. Archaeological sites are the homes of Democritus, the 5th-century philosopher, and of Protagoras, a counselor of Alexander the Great; and the Roman highway Via Egnatia.
CATEGORY: site; culture DEFINITION: The type site, in the Balkans near Kiev, of a Neolithic-Copper Age culture which formed in the Western Ukraine and east Romania (Cucuteni culture) in the 4th millennium BC. It is best known for its villages of up to 100 timber longhouses, and for fine polychrome vessels painted with curvilinear and geometric designs. They also had copper and gold objects. Tripolye people practiced shifting agriculture, frequently moving their settlements. The Tripolyeculturecame to an end with the expansion westwards of steppe cultures of kurgan or single-grave type. The Cucuteni-Tripolye culture was a Neolithic European culture that arose in Ukraine between the Seret and Bug rivers, with an extension to the Dnieper River, about 3000 BC.
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 excavationgrid squares so that different stratigraphic layers could be correlated across the site in the vertical profiles.
CATEGORY: technique DEFINITION: An excavation strategy in which archaeologists open large areas of a site at a single time but leave balk walls between units to preserve stratigraphy.