Symbolic Associations: Assessing the Co-occurrence of Ash and Turquoise in the Ancient U.S. Southwest
Ash provides a ritually meaningful medium through which to alter or close spaces. In the U.S. Southwest, the patterned deposition of ash in archaeological contexts has been linked to practices of purification and the preservation or suppression of social memory. Turquoise also carries important symbolic meanings in the region, with notable links to moisture, sky, and personal and familial vitality. In archaeological contexts of the Pueblo Southwest, turquoise is often associated with ash or related features like hearths, suggesting an intentional link. This material linkage may represent a broader North American pattern as the association of ash/hearths and turquoise is apparent in multiple cultural contexts. We explore evident connections throughout North America before intensively examining co-occurrences at sites in the Homol’ovi Settlement Cluster, a late prehispanic series of ancestral Hopi pueblos in northeastern Arizona. We address the prevalence and contextual patterning of ash, hearths, and turquoise within the Homol’ovi pueblos to assess their potential role in feature and structure closure practices. We consider the likely symbolism of archaeological patterns using traditional Pueblo perspectives.
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Symbolic Associations: Assessing the Co-occurrence of Ash and Turquoise in the Ancient U.S. Southwest. Samantha Fladd, Saul Hedquist, E. Charles Adams, Stewart B. Koyiyumptewa. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 443955)
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min long: -124.365; min lat: 25.958 ; max long: -93.428; max lat: 41.902 ;
Abstract Id(s): 19952