Death from Above: Using Remote Sensing Data to Examine Mortuary Landscapes along the Nile 4th Cataract

Author(s): Christopher Sevara; Brenda Baker

Year: 2015


The Bioarchaeology of Nubia Expedition project area stretches for over 30 kilometers along the right bank of the Nile in northern Sudan, from the modern village of Abu Tin at the top of the Great Bend west to the area across from Shemkhiya. Many of the numerous archaeological resources located within the concession have principal funerary components from multiple time periods, and their placement in the landscape with regard to specific topographic and environmental features is difficult to ignore. We use a combination of 2- and 3-dimensional historic and modern remote sensing data combined with in-field survey and excavation results to examine issues such as topographic prominence, intervisibility, and other spatial and contextual relationships between archaeological objects and the natural environment in our study area. Combined with a GIS-based, broad-brush style interpretation of modern land use based on historic landscape characterisation approaches, these methods allow us to begin situating funerary monuments in the wider context of the landscape. This work, in turn, helps us understand archaeological resources in the region as interconnected components of a larger cultural dynamic with complex relationships to people and the environment in both the present and the past.

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Cite this Record

Death from Above: Using Remote Sensing Data to Examine Mortuary Landscapes along the Nile 4th Cataract. Christopher Sevara, Brenda Baker. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 395718)


Geographic Keywords

Spatial Coverage

min long: -18.809; min lat: -38.823 ; max long: 53.262; max lat: 38.823 ;