tDAR Logo tDAR digital antiquity

archaeological science (Other Keyword)

1-14 (14 Records)

Ancient explosives from Jerusalem identified on the analysis of the mysterious sphero-conical ceramic vessels using archaeological chemistry (2016)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 405015] Carney Matheson. Cory Vickruck. Chris McEvoy. Robert Mason.

Thick-walled small stoneware Sphero-conical vessels have been found throughout the Middle East between the 10th and 14th centuries. Researchers have proposed that these vessels could have been used as smoking pipes, grenades or containers holding medicines, mercury, beer or perfume. The unusual nature of the ceramic, being the only highly fired stoneware produced in the Middle East, together with the very thick walls, would indicate an unusually dedicated function that only existed between the...


Ancient Glass Studies from 1st-2nd Millennium AD Africa: What Have We learned and Where Are We Going (2015)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 396527] Thomas Fenn.

The study of ancient glass in Africa has undergone a resurgence in the past 10+ years, particularly with regards to the integration of new and varied analytical approaches. Glass from Roman, Byzantine and Islamic Era contexts are increasingly undergoing scrutiny to explore modes of manufacture, access to raw materials, provenance of raw materials and finished glass goods, and the role that glass production and consumption played in those societies, to name a few. Advances in instrumental...


A Comparison of Elemental Analysis Methods for Sediment Geochemistry (2017)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 430016] Catherine Scott.

This poster will present preliminary interpretations from a study comparing different techniques of elemental analysis for sediment geochemistry, the goal of which is to determine the "best" technique to answer the questions at hand. "Sediment geochemistry" here refers to the collection of sediment samples and the elemental analysis of these samples in order to map activity areas across archaeological sites. This study used sediment samples collected from a modern, abandoned village called Eski...


Corrosion concerns and metal soap formation in shea butter-containing Forawa brass vessels from Ghana (2015)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 397424] Sebastian Warmlander. Vanessa Muros. Ellen Pearlstein. Kym Faull. David Scott.

Twenty-three forowa metal vessels from Ghana, housed in the Fowler Museum at UCLA, were investigated with regard to manufacture and deterioration. Technical examination revealed that all vessels were manufactured from skillfully hammered brass sheets, and purpose-built for storing shea butter, a multi-purpose substance derived from shea nuts. Most vessels contain remnants of shea butter, which has become discolored: while shea butter extracted using native methods is off-white to yellow, the...


A Culture of Innovation in Archaeological Science at McMaster University (2017)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 431382] Aubrey Cannon. Andrew Roddick.

Archaeological science has exploded globally in the past several decades, a pattern that is evident in the range and sophistication of scholarship at a variety of Canadian institutions. McMaster University, however, has played, and continues to play, a particularly important role in the development of archaeological science. In this introductory paper, we explore the genealogy and early impact of a number of pioneering scholars at McMaster. We highlight the pivotal role of the Canadian...


Does technology hinder or assist story-telling? A critical theory approach to archaeological representation and relational data (2017)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 431200] Steve Kosiba.

Advances in archaeological science are throwing new light on old concerns about representations of the past. Methods such as GIS allow archaeologists systematically to analyze multiple variables at once and rapidly to view data from various vantage points. Critics argue that such methods lose sight of the experiential aspects of history—the cultural differences that influenced how different people participated in social life and told stories about their past. This paper argues that this critique...


Entering the Viking Age (2017)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 430725] Charlotte Hedenstierna-Jonson.

Often depicted as a time of local but powerful chieftains, mounted elite warriors and spectacular boat inhumation burials, the Vendel period preceded the Viking Age in Swedish history writing. While contacts with Central Europe and beyond were extensive the societal structure in Scandinavia was still small scale, spread out and built on personal relations. But times were changing and from the mid 8th century several new features evolve: the emergence of town like structures, changes in scale and...


Experimental Iron Smelting at Meroe, Sudan (2017)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 429350] Michael Charlton. Jane Humphris.

The Royal City of Meroe, situated 250km north of Khartoum in the Republic of Sudan, was a capital of the Kingdom of Kush from the 4th Century BC. Famed for its pyramids and other monumental architecture, Meroe was also home to extensive bloomery ironworks exemplified by numerous slag mounds scattered across the site. Superficial investigation of furnace and slag remains were undertaken in the 1980’s and raised numerous questions about the technology. New archaeometallurgical research was...


Large changes environmental changes following commercial whaling in the Eastern Canadian Arctic (2016)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 403099] Paul Szpak.

Stable isotope records from dovekie (Alle alle), ringed seal (Pusa hispida) and bowhead whale (Balaena mysticetus) bones recovered from archaeological sites in eastern North American High Arctic (northwestern Greenland and eastern Canadian Arctic) reveal little auks declined an entire trophic level in the 20th century, following stability between the 12th and early 20th centuries. Conversely, bowhead whale trophic level remained stable and ringed seal trophic level slightly increased across the...


Materials Processing in the Production of Ceramic Bronze-Casting Molds from the Zhouyuan area, China, c. 1100-771 BCE (2017)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 430963] Matthew Chastain. Jianli Chen. Xingshan Lei.

The extraordinary bronze ritual vessels of Shang- and Zhou-period China were cast in multi-part ceramic molds, constructed from many individually formed mold sections. This piece-mold casting method was unique to ancient China, and an essential component of the technology appears to have been the use of a specialized type of ceramic paste to form the casting molds. This ceramic material was soft, porous, and rich in silica, making it quite unlike pottery clays in terms of composition,...


Obsidian Characterization at the McMaster Archaeological XRF Laboratory: Case-Studies from the Italian Island of Sardinia (2017)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 431392] Kyle Freund. Tristan Carter.

The McMaster Archaeological X-ray Fluorescence Laboratory (MAX Lab) was established in 2010 with the goal of using compositional analyses of archaeological objects to engage with broad-level questions about past human behavior. In this context, obsidian has been the primary artifact type analyzed, taking form through the sourcing of artifacts to the geological sources from which they originated. As an example, this presentation focuses on prehistoric obsidian exploitation on the central...


Spatial Association between Rapa Nui (Easter Island) Ahu and Freshwater Sources (2017)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 430528] Carl Lipo. Robert Dinapoli. Alex Morrison. Terry Hunt.

The famous ahu and moai monuments of Rapa Nui (Easter Island, Chile) are features associated with multiple relatively small-scale communities distributed around the island. These communities are marked archaeologically by repeated sets of domestic architectural classes surrounding ceremonial features (i.e., ahu and moai) that potentially served to functionally integrate local populations. Described in this fashion, this settlement pattern offers the potential to explain the substantial...


Sustainable research in archaeological science: Examples from high-and low resolution biogeochemical studies of archaeological shell (2017)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 431391] Meghan Burchell.

Advances in archaeological sciences demonstrated the (almost) unlimited potential to apply new methods and techniques to existing and under-utilized archaeological collections. Developing programs of research using innovative and multi-disciplinary approaches to the analysis of material cultural, hard tissues, sediments and organic remains are critical to move the discipline of archaeological sciences forward. More critical, is the balance between technical skills one learns to become an...


Technologies and the State: analyzing the impact of economic growth through archaeological science (2017)

Citation DOCUMENT [ID: 429332] Sandra Lopez Varela.

Mexico’s government attempts to eradicate poverty through infrastructure building and welfare policies have changed the social dimension of griddle and basket making at Cuentepec, in the State of Morelos Mexico. For generations, the house embodied the knowledge of making griddles and baskets, evoking people to remember fragments of the social practices of distant pasts and collectively lived histories. The act of remembrance is compromised with the building of welfare landscapes. Memory is...

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America