Assignment on archeology

The instructions are more clear in the file attachment.

The stratigraphic diagram here shows the vertical arrangement of strata, with Stratum 1 being the highest. Strata have been assigned numbers; walls have been assigned letters. For purposes of this exercise, assume that only one basic kind of pottery and associated decoration was actually being produced (e.g., ” hand-made; burnished black surface”) in each period. Remember, however, that artifacts made in earlier times regularly appear in later levels because people are constantly digging down into earlier levels and bringing up old artifacts, or even bringing them in from other places, so do not be surprised if some strata have a chronological mix. The term “stratum” here is used very loosely as a way to describe a level that is homogeneous in soil color, texture, and other characteristics. In a real site such “strata” would likely be excavated in many separate units, not in a single pass. When strata are horizontally discontinuous (as when cut completely by a later feature such as a pit or are interrupted by walls), I indicate that by using the same stratum number for each segment of the stratum.

Don't use plagiarized sources. Get Your Custom Essay on
Assignment on archeology
Just from $13/Page
Order Essay

Your assignment is to reconstruct the occupational history of this site using the sectional diagram and other information provided. For the purposes of this assignment, we will 1) assume that this trench is representative of the entire site and 2) that if a datable artifact or feature belonging to a particular period is reported, it means that the site was actually occupied then. In real life, it often happens that some parts of a large site may have been abandoned at a particular time, while other parts were occupied, but we will ignore that possibility here. We will also assume 3) that if we do not have datable artifacts or features from a particular period, the site was abandoned then and 4) that any direct scientific dates have been calibrated using the best means possible.

First, identify the basic times of occupation and abandonment using the pottery data, datable artifacts and C-14 dates provided. By “times,” I mean continuous episodes of people occupying the site, which may extend across several archaeological periods. For example, “The site was occupied continuously between the Late Pleonastic and Middle Chiastic Periods, based on the presence of wheel-made pottery with red spirals on pale surface, white circles on dark surface, and white rectangles on dark surface in Strata X, Y, and Z. It was abandoned during Late Chiastic Period ….” Indicate briefly what evidence leads you to your conclusions. You do NOT

need to regurgitate all of the evidence given for each stratum. Second, identify any probable buildings and what features belong to them (these might include walls and floors between walls), any graves, or other features evident in the sectional diagram and with what latest period they are associated; if a more specific latest terminus post quem than a whole period is possible because of a more specifically datable item associated with it, provide that as well for any graves, buildings, or other features that you have identified. Third, answer the specific questions below.

1) Mitch Igan believes that there is a serious problem with Stratum 4, because the C-14 date on the log (625 ± 25 AD) is much earlier than the other datable material in the stratum. Al Aska says that there is at least one perfectly obvious reason for the apparent discrepancy. What is it?

2) Arie Zona believes that Stratum 5 and Walls A, B, and C provide the conditions for being a terminus ante quem for the strata underneath. Is this true or not and why?

3) Neb Raska argues that the Paleolithic stone tool found in Stratum 8 provides the latest terminus post quem (125,000 BC) for that stratum. Explain whether this is true or not.

4) Indi Anna believes that the walnut shell in Wall E, C-14 dated to 910 BC ± 50 must be wrongly dated, because 910 BC would be in the Early Chiastic Period, and she does not see any pottery of that kind, so the site was not occupied then. Is her reasoning correct? If not, how could that date fit in with what has been excavated?

Evidence from strata:

Stratum 1: Some aluminum cans and glass bottles dating between 1970-1990 AD; coin dating to 1974 AD.

Stratum 2: Many wheel-made white-glazed potsherds; few sherds of wheel-made blue glazed pottery; glass whiskey bottle dated to 1895 AD.

Stratum 3: Many sherds of wheel-made blue glazed pottery and some sherds of wheel-made pottery with purple glaze; coin of king Floomus III, known to have ruled between 1225-1255 AD

Stratum 4: Many sherds of wheel-made, purple glazed pottery, including some broken pots that mended up into whole ones; these were found at the bottom of the stratum, resting on top of Stratum 5’s upper surface. Several coins were found, including ones of Kings Snarkon II (ruled 940-970 AD), Kluless I (925-940 AD), and Queen Mask-Ara (890-900 AD). The stratum was full of ash and other burnt remains, including some charred wooden beams that the excavators believed might have fallen from a burning roof. The project director, Griselda Grimes, took a sample from the innermost growth ring of the thickest preserved beam. It was C-14 dated to 625 ± 25 AD.

Stratum 5: This was a very hard-packed stratum with a pebbly upper surface between Walls A & B & C, as well as extending outside of Walls A & C. It seemed to have been walked on repeatedly. A few sherds of wheel- made purple glazed pottery were found within the stratum but under the pebbly upper surface.

Stratum 6: Many sherds of wheel-made green glazed pottery; inscribed base of a marble statue, with the inscription suggesting it was an image of Queen Gloppula, spouse of King Klump I (ruled 320-280 BC).

Stratum 7: Many sherds of wheel-made green glazed pottery and red glazed pottery. Bone collagen, which is organic, was extracted from a burnt bone of a young goat. It was C-14 dated to 390 ± 30 BC.

Stratum 8: The only datable artifact found in this stratum was a stone tool of a type (a Mousterian flake made by the Levallois technique) that dates to 125,000 BC, the Middle Paleolithic Period

Stratum 9: Many sherds of wheel-made pottery with white zig-zags on dark surface, some sherds of wheel- made pottery with white rectangles on dark surface, and a few hand-made with yellow burnished surface.

Stratum 10: This was a very densely packed stratum with a few sherds of wheel-made pottery with white rectangles on dark surface buried in it. The excavators thought that both this stratum and Stratum 11 had been rammed down to make smooth surfaces.

Stratum 11: This was another very densely packed stratum with one sherds of wheel-made pottery with white rectangles on dark surface and many sherds of hand-made yellow burnished pottery buried in it. Three barley seeds were found in embedded in the upper surface of Stratum 11. Two were C-14 dated; the dates were 880 ± 35 BC and 870 ± 30 BC.

Stratum 12: Many sherds of hand-made yellow burnished pottery. Stratum 13: Many sherds of hand-made yellow burnished pottery.

Stratum 14: Many sherds of hand-made red burnished pottery, some sherds of hand-made pottery with plain black surfaces and a few sherds of hand-made pottery with plain red surfaces.

Stratum 15: The excavators noted that this seemed to be a carefully made rectangular pit that cut down into Strata 17 and 18. The bottom of the stratum had a few recognizable human bones and teeth. Three whole pots were found here, all hand-made with burnished red surfaces.

Stratum 16: Like Stratum 15, the excavators noted that this seemed to be a carefully made rectangular pit that cut down into Strata 17 and 18. One whole hand-made pot with a red burnished surface was found. One human bone and one human tooth were found. Collagen from the bone was C-14 dated to 1750 ± 75 BC.

Stratum 17: Many sherds of hand-made pottery with plain black surfaces.

Stratum 18: Some sherds of hand-made pottery with plain black surfaces and some sherds of hand-made pottery with plain red surfaces.

Stratum 19: Some sherds of hand-made pottery with plain red surfaces

Evidence from wall features:

Wall A: Constructed of ashlar blocks; no datable material with it

Wall B: Constructed of ashlar blocks; one of the blocks has an inscription on it, indicating it belonged to a building called the “Jockeion” that was constructed by the tyrannical king Beeball III and queen Arogantia. The excavators are quite sure that the block was original to the wall and not re-used from an earlier structure. Beeball III and Arogantia ruled between 870-885 AD.

Wall C: Constructed of ashlar blocks; no datable material with it Wall D: Constructed of rough fieldstones; no datable material with it

Wall E: Constructed of rough fieldstones; deeply embedded in the dirt and mortar between the stones was a walnut shell dating to 910 ± 50 BC.

Additional information:

This region has been investigated in previous excavations and archaeologists have developed a regional chronology based on the decoration of the pottery, which you may assume to be reliable; the various periods are described below. Once again, the details are fictitious. The periods are shown here going from the present backward in time. The Splenetic, Frenetic, and Litotic periods are historical ones for which we know the names and dates of many rulers. The Chiastic, Pleonastic, Periphrastic, and Fantastic periods are prehistoric. The only written evidence we have for those periods is on imported items from other cultures.

Relative Periods

Modern

Splenetic

Late Frenetic Middle Frenetic Early Frenetic

Late Litotic Early Litotic

Late Chiastic Middle Chiastic Early Chiastic

Late Pleonastic Early Pleonastic

Final Periphrastic Advanced Periphrastic Developed Periphrastic Early Periphrastic

Late Fantastic Early Fantastic

Absolute Dates 1500 AD-present 1000-1500 AD

600 AD-1000 AD 200 AD-600 AD 250 BC-200 AD

450-250 BC 600-450 BC

800-600 BC 900-800 BC 1000-900 BC

1300-1000 BC 1500-1300 BC

1600-1500 BC 1900-1600 BC 2100-1900 BC 2700-2100 BC

4000-2700 BC 5700-4000 BC

Pottery manufacture & surface decoration wheel-made; white glazed
wheel-made; blue glazed

wheel-made; purple glazed wheel-made; orange glazed wheel-made; yellow glazed

wheel-made; green glazed wheel-made; red glazed

wheel-made; white zig-zags on dark surface wheel-made; white rectangles on dark surface wheel-made; white circles on dark surface

wheel-made; red spirals on pale surface wheel-made; black spirals on pale surface

hand-made; yellow burnished hand-made; red burnished hand-made; brown burnished hand-made; black burnished

hand-made; plain black hand-made; plain red

It is also known that this region was occupied during the Middle Palaeolithic (200,000-45,000 BC) and Upper Palaeolithic (45,000-9,000 BC), but only stone tools are known from this time.

Two pieces of information are provided for each pottery ware: “wheel-made” and “hand-made” refer to how the pot was formed by the potter; the other information refers to the color of the surface and the typical kind of decoration on the surface. “Glaze” is a kind of paint that melts when heated in a kiln and has a glassy surface.

It is helpful to start solving this kind of problem to write the periods found and latest terminus post quem for each stratum on the section to start determining the episodes of occupation and abandonment. I am including an extra copy of the section for this reason.The stratigraphic diagram here shows the vertical arrangement of strata, with Stratum 1 being the highest. Strata have been assigned numbers; walls have been assigned letters. For purposes of this exercise, assume that only one basic kind of pottery and associated decoration was actually being produced (e.g., ” hand-made; burnished black surface”) in each period. Remember, however, that artifacts made in earlier times regularly appear in later levels because people are constantly digging down into earlier levels and bringing up old artifacts, or even bringing them in from other places, so do not be surprised if some strata have a chronological mix. The term “stratum” here is used very loosely as a way to describe a level that is homogeneous in soil color, texture, and other characteristics. In a real site such “strata” would likely be excavated in many separate units, not in a single pass. When strata are horizontally discontinuous (as when cut completely by a later feature such as a pit or are interrupted by walls), I indicate that by using the same stratum number for each segment of the stratum.

Your assignment is to reconstruct the occupational history of this site using the sectional diagram and other information provided. For the purposes of this assignment, we will 1) assume that this trench is representative of the entire site and 2) that if a datable artifact or feature belonging to a particular period is reported, it means that the site was actually occupied then. In real life, it often happens that some parts of a large site may have been abandoned at a particular time, while other parts were occupied, but we will ignore that possibility here. We will also assume 3) that if we do not have datable artifacts or features from a particular period, the site was abandoned then and 4) that any direct scientific dates have been calibrated using the best means possible.

First, identify the basic times of occupation and abandonment using the pottery data, datable artifacts and C-14 dates provided. By “times,” I mean continuous episodes of people occupying the site, which may extend across several archaeological periods. For example, “The site was occupied continuously between the Late Pleonastic and Middle Chiastic Periods, based on the presence of wheel-made pottery with red spirals on pale surface, white circles on dark surface, and white rectangles on dark surface in Strata X, Y, and Z. It was abandoned during Late Chiastic Period ….” Indicate briefly what evidence leads you to your conclusions. You do NOT

need to regurgitate all of the evidence given for each stratum. Second, identify any probable buildings and what features belong to them (these might include walls and floors between walls), any graves, or other features evident in the sectional diagram and with what latest period they are associated; if a more specific latest terminus post quem than a whole period is possible because of a more specifically datable item associated with it, provide that as well for any graves, buildings, or other features that you have identified. Third, answer the specific questions below.

1) Mitch Igan believes that there is a serious problem with Stratum 4, because the C-14 date on the log (625 ± 25 AD) is much earlier than the other datable material in the stratum. Al Aska says that there is at least one perfectly obvious reason for the apparent discrepancy. What is it?

2) Arie Zona believes that Stratum 5 and Walls A, B, and C provide the conditions for being a terminus ante quem for the strata underneath. Is this true or not and why?

3) Neb Raska argues that the Paleolithic stone tool found in Stratum 8 provides the latest terminus post quem (125,000 BC) for that stratum. Explain whether this is true or not.

4) Indi Anna believes that the walnut shell in Wall E, C-14 dated to 910 BC ± 50 must be wrongly dated, because 910 BC would be in the Early Chiastic Period, and she does not see any pottery of that kind, so the site was not occupied then. Is her reasoning correct? If not, how could that date fit in with what has been excavated?

Evidence from strata:

Stratum 1: Some aluminum cans and glass bottles dating between 1970-1990 AD; coin dating to 1974 AD.

Stratum 2: Many wheel-made white-glazed potsherds; few sherds of wheel-made blue glazed pottery; glass whiskey bottle dated to 1895 AD.

Stratum 3: Many sherds of wheel-made blue glazed pottery and some sherds of wheel-made pottery with purple glaze; coin of king Floomus III, known to have ruled between 1225-1255 AD

Stratum 4: Many sherds of wheel-made, purple glazed pottery, including some broken pots that mended up into whole ones; these were found at the bottom of the stratum, resting on top of Stratum 5’s upper surface. Several coins were found, including ones of Kings Snarkon II (ruled 940-970 AD), Kluless I (925-940 AD), and Queen Mask-Ara (890-900 AD). The stratum was full of ash and other burnt remains, including some charred wooden beams that the excavators believed might have fallen from a burning roof. The project director, Griselda Grimes, took a sample from the innermost growth ring of the thickest preserved beam. It was C-14 dated to 625 ± 25 AD.

Stratum 5: This was a very hard-packed stratum with a pebbly upper surface between Walls A & B & C, as well as extending outside of Walls A & C. It seemed to have been walked on repeatedly. A few sherds of wheel- made purple glazed pottery were found within the stratum but under the pebbly upper surface.

Stratum 6: Many sherds of wheel-made green glazed pottery; inscribed base of a marble statue, with the inscription suggesting it was an image of Queen Gloppula, spouse of King Klump I (ruled 320-280 BC).

Stratum 7: Many sherds of wheel-made green glazed pottery and red glazed pottery. Bone collagen, which is organic, was extracted from a burnt bone of a young goat. It was C-14 dated to 390 ± 30 BC.

Stratum 8: The only datable artifact found in this stratum was a stone tool of a type (a Mousterian flake made by the Levallois technique) that dates to 125,000 BC, the Middle Paleolithic Period

Stratum 9: Many sherds of wheel-made pottery with white zig-zags on dark surface, some sherds of wheel- made pottery with white rectangles on dark surface, and a few hand-made with yellow burnished surface.

Stratum 10: This was a very densely packed stratum with a few sherds of wheel-made pottery with white rectangles on dark surface buried in it. The excavators thought that both this stratum and Stratum 11 had been rammed down to make smooth surfaces.

Stratum 11: This was another very densely packed stratum with one sherds of wheel-made pottery with white rectangles on dark surface and many sherds of hand-made yellow burnished pottery buried in it. Three barley seeds were found in embedded in the upper surface of Stratum 11. Two were C-14 dated; the dates were 880 ± 35 BC and 870 ± 30 BC.

Stratum 12: Many sherds of hand-made yellow burnished pottery. Stratum 13: Many sherds of hand-made yellow burnished pottery.

Stratum 14: Many sherds of hand-made red burnished pottery, some sherds of hand-made pottery with plain black surfaces and a few sherds of hand-made pottery with plain red surfaces.

Stratum 15: The excavators noted that this seemed to be a carefully made rectangular pit that cut down into Strata 17 and 18. The bottom of the stratum had a few recognizable human bones and teeth. Three whole pots were found here, all hand-made with burnished red surfaces.

Stratum 16: Like Stratum 15, the excavators noted that this seemed to be a carefully made rectangular pit that cut down into Strata 17 and 18. One whole hand-made pot with a red burnished surface was found. One human bone and one human tooth were found. Collagen from the bone was C-14 dated to 1750 ± 75 BC.

Stratum 17: Many sherds of hand-made pottery with plain black surfaces.

Stratum 18: Some sherds of hand-made pottery with plain black surfaces and some sherds of hand-made pottery with plain red surfaces.

Stratum 19: Some sherds of hand-made pottery with plain red surfaces

Evidence from wall features:

Wall A: Constructed of ashlar blocks; no datable material with it

Wall B: Constructed of ashlar blocks; one of the blocks has an inscription on it, indicating it belonged to a building called the “Jockeion” that was constructed by the tyrannical king Beeball III and queen Arogantia. The excavators are quite sure that the block was original to the wall and not re-used from an earlier structure. Beeball III and Arogantia ruled between 870-885 AD.

Wall C: Constructed of ashlar blocks; no datable material with it Wall D: Constructed of rough fieldstones; no datable material with it

Wall E: Constructed of rough fieldstones; deeply embedded in the dirt and mortar between the stones was a walnut shell dating to 910 ± 50 BC.

Additional information:

This region has been investigated in previous excavations and archaeologists have developed a regional chronology based on the decoration of the pottery, which you may assume to be reliable; the various periods are described below. Once again, the details are fictitious. The periods are shown here going from the present backward in time. The Splenetic, Frenetic, and Litotic periods are historical ones for which we know the names and dates of many rulers. The Chiastic, Pleonastic, Periphrastic, and Fantastic periods are prehistoric. The only written evidence we have for those periods is on imported items from other cultures.

Relative Periods

Modern

Splenetic

Late Frenetic Middle Frenetic Early Frenetic

Late Litotic Early Litotic

Late Chiastic Middle Chiastic Early Chiastic

Late Pleonastic Early Pleonastic

Final Periphrastic Advanced Periphrastic Developed Periphrastic Early Periphrastic

Late Fantastic Early Fantastic

Absolute Dates 1500 AD-present 1000-1500 AD

600 AD-1000 AD 200 AD-600 AD 250 BC-200 AD

450-250 BC 600-450 BC

800-600 BC 900-800 BC 1000-900 BC

1300-1000 BC 1500-1300 BC

1600-1500 BC 1900-1600 BC 2100-1900 BC 2700-2100 BC

4000-2700 BC 5700-4000 BC

Pottery manufacture & surface decoration wheel-made; white glazed
wheel-made; blue glazed

wheel-made; purple glazed wheel-made; orange glazed wheel-made; yellow glazed

wheel-made; green glazed wheel-made; red glazed

wheel-made; white zig-zags on dark surface wheel-made; white rectangles on dark surface wheel-made; white circles on dark surface

wheel-made; red spirals on pale surface wheel-made; black spirals on pale surface

hand-made; yellow burnished hand-made; red burnished hand-made; brown burnished hand-made; black burnished

hand-made; plain black hand-made; plain red

It is also known that this region was occupied during the Middle Palaeolithic (200,000-45,000 BC) and Upper Palaeolithic (45,000-9,000 BC), but only stone tools are known from this time.

Two pieces of information are provided for each pottery ware: “wheel-made” and “hand-made” refer to how the pot was formed by the potter; the other information refers to the color of the surface and the typical kind of decoration on the surface. “Glaze” is a kind of paint that melts when heated in a kiln and has a glassy surface.

It is helpful to start solving this kind of problem to write the periods found and latest terminus post quem for each stratum on the section to start determining the episodes of occupation and abandonment. I am including an extra copy of the section for this reason.

Homework Writing Bay
Calculator

Calculate the price of your paper

Total price:$26
Our features

We've got everything to become your favourite writing service

Need a better grade?
We've got you covered.

Order your paper