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Predict and Confirm: Survey and Excavation at Three Candidate Sites in Wadi Quseiba, Jordan in search of Late Neolithic Occupation

Author(s): Philip Hitchings ; Edward Banning

Year: 2015

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In 2012 and 2013, a team from University of Toronto surveyed the Wadi Quseiba drainage in northwest Jordan. The survey had two goals. The first was to discover evidence of Late Neolithic habitation and landscape use. Many large villages declined or were abandoned at the end of the Pre-Pottery Neolithic and we sought to augment our knowledge of Late Neolithic sites to help learn why this might be. The second was to increase the efficiency and reliability with which sites are located. To this end we experimented with Bayesian optimal-allocation methods. Following the survey, small-scale excavations in 2014 on three "candidate sites" revealed convincing evidence of Neolithic occupation. One site, WQ335, had surfaces and possible architecture along with many diagnostic artifacts from the Late Neolithic Wadi Rabah phase (ca. 7.5ka BP). Another, WQ117, revealed round pit structures along with many diagnostic Yarmoukian phase (ca. 8.5ka BP) artifacts, including a pebble figurine. A third site, WQ120, revealed later (Iron and Roman) remains over probable Pre-Pottery Neolithic elements. This paper will discuss results of the 2014 excavations and their role in confirming predictions based on survey results.

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Predict and Confirm: Survey and Excavation at Three Candidate Sites in Wadi Quseiba, Jordan in search of Late Neolithic Occupation. Philip Hitchings, Edward Banning. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 398287)


Geographic Keywords
West Asia

Spatial Coverage

min long: 25.225; min lat: 15.115 ; max long: 66.709; max lat: 45.583 ;

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