Archaeology Sitemap - Page 6 2016-09-26

Pedestrian Survey
The archaeological technique of pedestrian survey, also called surface survey or reconnaissance survey, involves walking the surface of an archaeological site or large region in stratified patterns.

Hochdorf - Iron Age Home and Grave of a Celtic Chieftain
Hochdorf is the name of a rural residence and the grave of a Celtic chieftain, the Iron Age prince of Hohen Asperg, near Stuttgart, German, in the 6th century BC.

Palmyra - Roman Empire Trading Center in the Syrian Desert
The archaeological site of Palmyra was a trading link between the Roman empire and India and Pakistan.

Gobekli Tepe - Background
Gobekli Tepe is a fascinating cultic center, apparently shared by several Pre-Pottery Neolithic groups over 11,000 years ago.

Gobekli Tepe compared to Other Pre-Pottery Neolithic Sites in Turkey and Syria
Pre-Pottery Neolithic sites. Archaeology.

Architecture at Göbekli Tepe
The enclosures at Gobekli Tepe were built by hunter-gatherers, who assembled perhaps as many as 20 circular rooms out of mortared stone walls and enormous monolithic carved stone stelae.

Animal Carvings at Gobekli Tepe
Throughout each of the enclosures are sculptured reliefs of animals,

Interpreting Gobekli Tepe
Can scholars work out the meaning of an elaborate set of structures, 11,600 years after they were built?

Bibliography for Göbekli Tepe
More reference material on Gobekli Tepe.

The Main Plaza Aqueduct - Walking Tour of Palenque
The aqueduct of the main plaza of Palenque is one of many infrastructures of this type located all over the ancient city

The Temple of the Cross at Palenque - Palenque Walking Tour
The Temple of the Cross is one of the three main temples that formed Las Cruces Group

Temple of the Foliated Cross at Palenque - Palenque Walking Tour
The Temple of the Foliated Cross is one of the three main temples that formed Las Cruces Group

The Ball Court at Palenque - Palenque Walking Tour
Palenque, contrary to other Maya cities, counts with only one ball court located between the palace ad the North Group

The North Group at Palenque - Palenque Walking Tour
The North Group marks the northern limit of the ancient city of Palenque and it is constituted by a series of temples and small adoratories

The Temple of the Count at Palenque - Palenque Walking Tour
The Temple of the Count marks the west side of the North Group of buildings at Palenque. It received its name from the count of Waldeck, one of the explorers of Palenque, who lived in the temple for almost two years.

The Temple of the Inscriptions - Palenque Walking Tour
Temple of the Inscriptions is probably the most famous monument of Palenque. Here, in 1952, was discovered the tomb of Pakal the Great, ruler of Palenque.

Las Cruces Group at Palenque - Palenque Walking Tour
Las Cruces Group is one of the most famous and elegant group of temples of the site. It was constructed by order of one of pakal's son, Kan Bhalum.

Temple of the Sun at Palenque - Palenque Walking Tour
The Temple of the Sun is one of the three main temples that formed Las Cruces Group

Group IV at Palenque - Palenque Walking Tour
Group IV is one of the many elite residential compounds located around the site core of Palenque

Templo de la Calavera at Palenque - Palenque Walking Tour - Temple of the Skull
The Templo de la Calavera is one of the Temples that along with the Temple XIII and the Temple of the Inscriptions marks the south side of the main plaza of Palenque.

Temple XIII and Tomb of the Red Queen at Palenque - Palenque Walking Tour
Temple XIII of Palenque is one of the temples that close the south side of the main plaza and where in 1994 was discovered the second most important tomb of Palenque, the Tomb of the Red Queen

Palenque Walking Tour - Photo Gallery of the Maya Site of Palenque
Photo gallery and description of the main spots to see visiting the Classic Maya site of Palenque, Chiapas, Mexico

The Palace at Palanque - Palenque Walking Tour
The Palace of Palenque was the royal residence of several rulers who governed the city

Opal Phytolith Bibliography
A biography of recent articles on opal phytolith analysis. Page 2.

Opal Phytoliths - How do archaeologists use Opal Phytoliths
The analysis of opal phytoliths has become, over the past thirty years or so, a workhorse of archaeological science. Phytolith analysis is an example of how inventive researchers in archaeology use the hard science processes of botany and geology to illuminate the soft-science interpretations of our human past.

A Bibliography of Opal Phytoliths: Pearsall to Umlauf
A bibliography of the use of phytoliths in archaeology. Page 3.

Cultural Resource Management - a Process
Cultural Resource Management is, essentially, a process by which the protection and management of the multitudinous but scarce elements of cultural heritage are given some consideration in a modern world with an expanding population and changing needs.

Erlitou - What and Where is Erlitou
Erlitou is a very large Bronze Age (Shang or Xia Dynasty) site located 9 kilometers southwest of Yanshi City in Henan Province of China.

Bibliography of the Vindolanda Tablets
Recent journal articles and books about the Vindolanda tablets. Page 2.

Vindolanda Tablets - Letters Home from Hadrian's Wall
The Vindolanda Tablets are over 1300 slivers of wood on which are written the day to day details of life in a Roman Empire fort in Britain in the early centuries AD.

Caral: The Earliest Civilization in the New World
A collection of sites in the Supe Valley of Peru are proving to be the ancestral source of the Inca and other later civilizations of South and Central America. Caral and the other Supe Valley sites promise to teach us why people choose to become urban dwellers.

Structuralism
Structuralism, which started out as a theory of language, ended up impacting most of the social and historical scieces including archaeology during the latter half of the twentieth century.

Vitrified Forts - What are Vitrified Forts
There are, believe it or not, some 200 hillforts and other archaeological sites in the world which have been vitrified--exposed to heat so extreme that part of the buildings are converted to glass-like substances.

European Archaeology Graduate Schools
Universities throughout Europe which provide students with advanced degrees in archaeology

Aurignacian Period
The Aurignacian period (40,000 to 28,000 years ago) is an Upper Paleolithic stone tool tradition

Robert Eric Mortimer Wheeler [1890-1976]
Sir Mortimer Wheeler had to have been the most influential public archaeologist of the middle twentieth century, as a result of his three popular television series on archaeology.

Battlefield Archaeology
Battlefield archaeology is the archaeological investigations of the sites of military battles.

Chan Chan - Capital of the Chimu Kingdom
The World Heritage archaeological site of Chan Chan is located in the Trujillo province on the north coast of Peru, and it was the capital of the Chimú state between about AD 850 and 1470.

Introduction, Timeline and Advances of Ancient Mesopotamia
Mesopotamia is an ancient civilization that took up pretty much everything that today is modern Iraq, a triangular patch wedged between the Tigris River, the Zagros Mountains, and the Lesser Zab River.

Paviland Cave - The Red Lady Burial of Wales
Paviland Cave, or rather Goat's Hole Cave is a cave in South Wales dated to the Early Upper Paleolithic period between 30,000-20,000 years ago.

Pedra Furada (Brazil)
The archaeological site of Pedra Furada, Brazil, is a stratified rockshelter with a very early (and hence contested) date, a Paleoindian occupation, and some ancient cave art dated between 5000 and 11000 years BP.

Burzahom (India)
The site of Burzahom is a Neolithic settlement and cemetery in the Kashmir state of India, occupied between about 3000-1500 BC.

Zhoukoudian - Stratified Cave Site of Peking Man
Zhoukoudian is the name of a stratified cave and fissures in Fangshan District, about 45 km southwest of Beijing, China where several very ancient archaeological occupations have been identified.

Lake Mungo, Australia Archaeological Site
Lake Mungo is the name of several archaeological sites, located in 13 inter-connected dry lake basins, located in western New South Wales, Australia.

Forensic Anthropology - Definition and Examples
Forensic anthropology is the study of human behaviors as they apply to the law. Here are more definitions of the study of forensic anthropology

Dzudzuana Cave - Early Upper Paleolithic Cave in Georgia
Dzudzuana is a rockshelter with important, stratified Early Upper Paleolithic occupations, located in the western part of the Republic of Georgia, 5 kilometers east of the similarly dated Ortvale Klde.

Cultural Evolution Theory Definition
Cultural evolution is the theory that culture changes over time as an adaptive response to stimulus.

Howiesons Poort and Stillbay - Middle Stone Age Howiesons Poort and StillBay
The most advanced industries of the Middle Stone Age are those of the Howiesons Poort and Stillbay industries of southern Africa

Western Sahara - Gobero - Ancient Life in the Western Sahara
Excavations at the site of Gobero in the Tenere Desert in West African Niger have provided scholars with a look into the climatic changes of the vast Sahara Desert.

Sahara Desert Weather - Ancient Changes in the Sahara Desert Weather
The Sahara Desert weather patterns have not always been hyper-arid--archaeological excavations in the Niger of western Africa have provided a glimpse into the history of climate change

West Saharan Excavations at Gobero
The site of Gobero is located on the tops of geologically-stable sand dunes adjacent to a long-abandoned lake bed in central Niger.

The Oldest Cemetery in the Sahara - the Kiffian Occupation at Gobero
The earliest substantive human use of Gobero is called the Kiffian, and it represents the oldest planned cemetery in the Sahara desert.

Tenerean Occupations at Gobero
The final substantial human occupation of Gobero is called the Tenerean occupation, between 5200 and 2500 BC.

Yeha - Archaeological Site of Yeha in Ethiopia
The archaeological site of Yeha, once thought to be pre-Aksumite, is believed to have had little contact with South Arabia.

Building J at Monte Alban - Zapotec Astronomical Observatory
The mysteriously-shaped Building J at the Zapotec site of Monte Albán in the state of Oaxaca, Mexico, has been thought to have been built for astronomical and ritual purposes

Calakmul - The Ancient Maya Site of Calakmul
Calakmul is an ancient archaeological site in Mexico, one of the great Maya civilization capital cities during the Late Classic period.

Controlling Water at Calakmul
Because little or no surface water is available in the area, an extensive hydraulic system was created at Calakmul, including 13 large reservoirs with a minimum total capacity of nearly 100 million liters.

Central Plaza and Structure II at Calakmul
The heart of Calakmul is a 1.75 square kilometer area with 975 different buildings, arranged around a large central plaza.

Structure II and the Tomb of Jaguar Paw at Calakmul
Structure II was first built during the Late Preclassic, but was substantially altered during the Late Classic period.

Structure VII at Calakmul
Structure VII is another enormous pubic building at the Maya civilization site of Calakmul

New Discoveries at Calakmul
In November of 2009, archaeologist Ramon Carrasco Vargas and colleagues reported on the discovery of a painted mural, located in the Chiik Nahb complex, an architectural group just north of the Central Plaza.

Drawing from Chiik Nahb Complex at Calakmul
Images in the murals in the building in Chiik Nahb include groups of men, women and a child engaged in cooking or carrying goods with a tumpline, or selling pottery.

Stele 51 at Calakmul
History of archaeological investigations at Calakmul

Guide to the Zhou Dynasty of China - The Confucian Age
The Zhou Dynasty (also spelled Chou) conquered the Shang rulers and ruled major parts of what is now China for over 700 years (ca 1046-221 BC).

Flotation Method in Archaeology
Archaeological flotation involves using water to process soil or feature fill to recover tiny artifacts.

Fremont Culture - Late Prehistoric Farmers of the Great Basin
Fremont Culture is the term archaeologists use to refer to the archaeological remains of Late Prehistoric people who farmed in the arid deserts of the Great Basin of the southwestern United States.

Searching for the Lost Continent of Atlantis
Atlantis has been sought for centures: a geological search for the lost continent of Atlantis includes a bathymetric investigation of an island in the right place, under the right circumstances--but at the wrong time.

Atlantis Rediscovered?: Right Place, Right Circumstances, Wrong Time
A search for the lost continent of Atlantis includes a bathymetric investigation of an island in the right place, under the right circumstances--but at the wrong time. Page 2.

Spartel Island Not Likely Atlantis: Marc-Andre Gutscher Responds
A note from Marc-Andre Gutscher concerning his article in Geology describes his revised conclusions concerning Spartel Island. Page 3.

Uluburun Shipwreck - Late Bronze Age Wreck Off Turkey
Uluburun is the name of a Late Bronze Age ship, wrecked off the coast of Turkey near Kas in the 14th century BC and about 50 meters below the water's surface and six miles from the coast.

Archaeomagnetic Dating
Archaeomagnetic dating is a method of assigning a date to a fireplace or burned earth area using the earth's magnetic field.

Obsidian Hydration - An Inexpensive, but Problematic Dating Technique
The dating technique called obsidian hydration is a favorite of archaeologists, both because it is relatively secure and because it is relatively inexpensive.

Sources on Sannai Maruyama
Sources and suggested reading for Sannai Maruyama

Cart Ruts - Architectural Elements of the Malta Temples
On the islands of Malta and Gozo are an architectural feature that may or may not have something to do with the famous Temples.

Xianrendong - Early Pottery in Central China
Xianrendong is a cave site in Jiangxi province in China, where some of the earliest pottery yet discovered have been found.

Hoabinhian - What and when was the Hoabinhian
The Hoabinhian Period is the name given to that section of Southeast Asian prehistory from about 13,000 to 3000 BC.

Skateholm - Late Mesolithic Site in Sweden
Skateholm is a group of nine sites located on an ancient lagoon in the Scania region of southern Sweden

Nenana Complex - What is the Nenana Complex
The Nenana Valley of central Alaska is the site of one of the earliest archaeological occupations in the North American continent

What Is the Kennewick Man Controversy About?
The Kennewick Man controversy began with a couple of guys sneaking into a boat race; but the saga includes all of what modern archaeology is about, including science, religion, and indigenous people's rights. This series discusses the Kennewick findings, the issues at stake and the progress of the court case.

Kuk Swamp - Early Evidence for Agriculture in New Guinea
Kuk Swamp, Papua New Guinea, is a crucial piece of the puzzle, understanding the beginnings of agriculture in Oceania and south Asia.

The Domestication History of Muscovy Duck (Cairina moschata)
The Muscovy Duck is the only known bird domesticate from the Americas, and, like its fellow American the guinea pig, it also exported out by Europeans

Archaeology Graduate Schools in Canada
A list of universities in Canada which have departments granting advanced degrees to prospective archaeologists.

Clovis, Black Mats, and Extra-Terrestrials
Although a lot of the hot news in archaeology these days is centered on Pre-Clovis, many scholars are focused on the end of the Clovis big game hunters.

Domestication and Dispersal of Coconuts
Coconuts were first domesticated at least 3500 years ago, in island south east Asia.

All About the Coconut Palm
The coconut palm (Cocos nucifera) is an important crop for an enormous range of products, and its history is a fascinating one.

Types of Coconuts
There are two broad types of coconuts, called dwarf and tall, and the types are part of the history of the origins of domestication

Coconut Domestication Bibliography
A bibliography of sources on coconuts and their domestication

Google Earth and Archaeology
Google Earth, software that uses high resolution satellite images of the entire planet to allow the user to get an incredible moving aerial view of our world, has stimulated some serious applications in archaeology--and seriously good fun for fans of archaeology.

Google Earth and Archaeology - Trying Google Earth Out
Archaeology. Page 2.

Teotihuacan - The Ancient Ruins of Teotihuacan
The city of Teotihuacan was built in the highlands of central Mexico about 150 BC and became one of the largest cities in the world of the time.

Juan Ginés de Sepúlveda [1494-1573]
The Spanish priest Juan Ginés de Sepúlveda is best remembered as a participant in what must be among the most important debates in history, at least with regard to the Spanish colonies in Central and South America.

Sungir (Russia)
The Sungir archaeological site is an enormous Upper Paleolithic archaeological settlement and cemetery located outside of Vladimir, Russia

Walking Tour of Sannai Maruyama - Jomon Liffestyles
A photo essay on what archaeology has discovered about the Jomon as seen at the Sannai Maruyama site

Jomon Ceramics - Artifacts from Sannai Maruyama
Over 14,000 crates of artifacts have been excavated from Sannai Maruyama, primarily stone and bone tools.

The Sannai Maruyama Site
Sannai Maruyama is a National Historical Site and currently a major tourist attraction, with several reconstructed buildings and a museum exhibit open to the public.

Jomon Houses - Bark-Thatched Pit Dwellings at Sannai Maruyama
Bark-thatched huts were some of the houses used by the Jomon people living at Sannai Maruyama.

Houses of the Jomon - Pit Dwellings at Sannai Maruyama
Pit dwellings at Sannai Maruyama also included more complex houses, with thatched roofs and walls.

Six Pillar Buildings at Sannai Maruyama
One intriguing type of house seen at Sannai Maruyama is the six-pillared building.

Long Houses at Sannai Maruyama
A total of 11 large oval semi-subterranean pit dwellings are called long houses.

Large Six Pillar Structure at Sannai Maruyama
This 14.7 meter tower structure is a guess on the part of the archaeologists at Sannai Maruyama.

Burials at Sannai Maruyama
Burials at Sannai Maruyama took three forms: jar burials, pit burials, and stone circle burials.

Jomon Diets - Middens at Sannai Maruyama
Midden deposits were discovered in several parts of the Sannai Maruyama site, including two waterlogged ones.

Khmer Empire Water Management System
The Khmer Empire, also known as the Angkor civilization, were compelled to manage water through a complex of man-made canals and reservoirs, the result of which was to permanently alter the local hydrology.

Lead - Human Use of the Mineral Ore Pb
Lead is a mineral which can be toxic to humans: and it has been used in many different ways and different forms throughout human history.

Varna Bulgaria - Eneolithic/Copper Age Cemetery
The Balkan Copper Age cemetery site of Varna is located near the resort town of the same name, on the Black Sea in coastal Bulgaria.

Desert Kites - Ancient Hunting Technique Desert Kites
Desert kites are the name RAF pilots gave to the ancient hunting technique of building stone walls to herd animals to the slaughter. Now how did that happen?

Ile Ife (Nigeria) History and Archaeology
Ile-Ife is the traditional home of the Yoruba civilization, and an archaeological site located in southwestern Nigeria.

Hierakonpolis (Egypt) - Largest Predynastic Community in Egypt
Hierakonpolis is one of the largest predynastic towns ever discovered in Egypt; where wild and savage animals were kept.

Middle Kingdom Nubians at Hierakonpolis
By the Middle Kingdom, a small population of Nubians from far to the south were living and thriving at Hierakonpolis. Page 2.

The Mesoamerican Calendar: Ancient Shared Time Keeping
The Mesoamerican calendar was being used by all of the societies in Mesoamerica when the Spanish conquistador Hernan Cortes arrived in 1519.

Hopewell Culture - North America's Mound Building Horticulturalists
The Hopewell civilization (also called Adena in some regions) is a prehistoric culture of the American middle west.

Who Were the Aryans? Hitler's Persistent Mythology
The flawed and racist Aryan Invasion Myth was developed in the late 19th century to explain the blossoming of the Indus River Civilization.

The End of the Minoan Civilization - Earthquakes and Insurrection
What caused the end of the Minoan culture? Earthquakes, war with mainland Greece or an insurrection? Probably a bit of all three. Page 2.

Minoan Bronze Age - Minoan Civilization of Ancient Crete
We don't really know what the Minoans called themselves--the ancient early Bronze Age culture in Greece was named for the legendary King Minos.

Dilmun
Recent archaeological investigations at Dilmun have added to the historical record of the fabulous international trading community in the Persian Gulf. Page 2.

Dilmun - Mesopotamian Paradise and Trading Culture on the Persian Gulf
The Bronze Age trading center of Dilmun on the Persian Gulf coast was described as a paradise in the earliest cuneiform records of Mesopotamia.

The Palermo Stone: Key to Old Kingdom Egypt Royal Families
The Palermo Stone is one of seven fragments of the tremendously important Royal Annals of Ancient Egypt, an historical record of the early Old Kingdom.

Step Pyramid of Djoser - Egypt's Oldest Pyramid
The Step Pyramid of Djoser was the first of the great pyramids built in Egypt, during the Old Kingdom's 3rd Dynasty about 2800 BC.

Mesoamerican Digs
Each year, Mesoamerica is the focus of archaeological excavations for universities or other research teams. Here's a selection.

Field Schools and Scheduled Excavations in the Eastern USA
Schools in the eastern United States conduct loads of field schools. Here's a sample.

Cactus Hill (USA) - Possible Preclovis Site in Virginia
Cactus Hill is a buried multicomponent site on the Nottaway River of Virginia, with archaic, Clovis and, below that, a possible Pre-Clovis occupation.

Gault Site (Texas, US) - Clovis Workshop in Central Texas
The Gault site is a stratified multicomponent site with an extensive, artifact-rich Clovis component, located in central Texas.

Eridu (Iraq) - Earliest City in Mesopotamia - and the World?
The Sumerian city of Eridu (now called Tell Abu Shahrain) is located about 22 kilometers south of Nasiriya in Iraq, and it was first occupied about 5000 BC.

Guilá Naquitz (Mexico) - Key Evidence of Maize Domestication History
Guilá Naquitz is a small cave located Mexico's Valley of Oaxaca, which held key evidence about American plant domestication.

Exit Interview: Why People Quit Archaeology
While a career in archaeology sounds like an exciting and fulfilling career, the demands it places on one's life may not add up to a lifelong career.

Blackwater Draw - 12,000 Years of Hunting in New Mexico
Eleven thousand years ago, a small lake near Clovis, New Mexico, was populated with extinct forms of elephant, wolf, bison, and horse, and the people who hunted them.

Ban Chiang - Bronze Age Village and Cemetery in Thailand
In the northeastern part of Thailand, at the confluence of three small tributary streams in Udon Thani province, lies the Bronze Age village and cemetery site of Ban Chiang.

Kerma - African Capital, Rival to Egyptian Pharaohs
Kerma is the name of a Kushite kingdom and capital in the Sudanese Nubia, traders and rivals to the Middle and New Kingdoms in Bronze Age Egypt.

Archaeology Clubs for Amateurs - Getting Your Hands Dirty
Need a way to connect with other amateur archaeologists, hear about recent archaeological finds, or visit an archaeological dig? Join a club. Here's how to find the right one.

Jomon - The Holocene Hunter Gatherers of Japan Made Pottery
The Jomon Tradition were early hunter-gatherers in Japan, who may have invented pottery vessels and domesticated bottle gourds: or may have simply borrowed those early technologies from mainland China. They are also implicated in the early colonization of the Americas.

Lefkandi (Greece) - Village, Cemeteries and Temple to a Hero
Lefkandi is an archaeological site and cemetery near the modern village of Eretria on the island of Euboea

How Can I Study Archaeology in High School?
You don't have to wait until college to start getting ready for a career in archaeology. Here are some tips for the would-be archaeologist for back-to-school.

Peer Review - The Way Peer Review Works in the Social Sciences
The intent of peer review is to keep the quality of published articles high, and assure that poor or fallacious research does not get published. Hmm.

Letters of Reference - Applying to Graduate School and Letters from Employers
Should you use a letter from an employer as a referee in your graduate student application? Page 2.

Letters of Reference - Tips for Applying to Graduate School
It's so important to select the right person to write a reference for you. Here are some tips to get the best references for your buck.

Olduvai Gorge - Home of Ancient Humans in Tanzania, Africa
Olduvai Gorge in Tanzania is an ancient hominid archaeological site in Tanzania, with occupations dated to 1.8 million years ago.

History of Honey Bees and Human Management of Apis mellifera
The honey bee (Apis mellifera) was first managed--although not by any means domesticated--at least 8,500 years ago.

Archaeological Evidence of Honey Bee Domestication
An important site in the history of honey bees is Tel Rehov, Israel, an Iron Age with some of the earliest examples of honey bee management. Page 2.

The Ptolemies: From Alexander to Cleopatra
The Ptolemies were members of the final dynasty of Egyptian pharaohs, members of a Greek family based in Alexandria.

NOVA - Making North America, Part 3: Human - A Review
The last part of the NOVA series Making North America addresses the impact of humans on the continent, and warns us of potential hazards in our future.

Cairn - A Stacked Heap of Rocks with a Multitude of Uses
A cairn is a deliberately placed heap of rocks, that may represent one or more of numerous kinds of monuments built for numerous reasons and purposes,

Information About Fig Trees
Archaeological and botanical investigations lead researchers to believe that figs were the first plant domesticated in the world.

The Human Discovery of Fire
The discovery of fire was one of the earliest discoveries of humans. Fire's purposes are multiple, some of which are to add light and heat, to cook plants and animals, to clear forests for planting, to heat-treat stone for making stone tools, to burn clay for ceramic objects.

Fire Discovery Bibliography
Scholarly resources on the history of the use and control of fire. Page 2.

Priests - What an Anthropologist Means When She Calls Someone a Priest
The word

Henry Ford on Why History is Bunk - What Did He Really Say?
Henry Ford said 'History is bunk' in all kinds of ways; and the rest of us have pondered just exactly what he meant ever since. Turns out--so did he!

NOVA Making North America, Part 2: Life - A Review
PBS's NOVA series Making North America: Life takes us on a journey to discover the rise and fall of ancient animal life in the North American continent

Human Intervention into the Fig's Biological Processes
Recent archaeological studies into the domestication of the fig have suggested that the fig tree was propagated by human beings at last 11,400 years ago. Page 2.

What Does That Quote Mean? Archaeology FAQ
A Reader asks: What does George Orwell's quote,

The Etruscans - Experts at Gold and Copper and Annoying Romans
The Etruscans were experts at gold and copper metalwork and sailing who lived in Tuscany in central Italy between the 10th and 1st centuries BC

Bibliographic Sources for Bottle Gourd Domestication
Bibliographic references on the domestication of the bottle gourd. Page 2.

A Lesson in Applied Archaeology, Part 1
Part I of an interview with Clark Erickson of the University of Pennsylvania on his work with prehistoric agricultural fields in the Lake Titicaca region of Peru and Bolivia.

A Team of Scholars - A Lesson in Applied Archaeology, Part 1
Clark Erickson describes the team effort it takes to investigate how ancient agricultural fields work, in the Lake Titicaca region of Peru and Bolivia. Page 2.

What is Raised Field Agriculture? - A Lesson in Applied Archaeology, Part 1
Clark Erickson describes what a raised field is, how it differs from modern agricultural processes, and how the method sustained an important culture in the highlands of Bolivia and Peru during prehistory. Page 3.

Biskupin - Iron Age Hill Fort in Poland
Biskupin is the name of a fortified Iron Age settlement, where people lived in densely packed rows of houses on an island about 500 BC.

Danebury - Iron Age Hillfort in the United Kingdom
Danebury Hillfort is an archaeological site in Hampshire, England, built ca 550 AD as a regional center during the European Iron Age.

Antiques Roadshow Ethics - Studies in Archaeological Context
In 2000, the American version of Antiques Roadshow committed a serious faux pas by archaeological lights when it featured artifacts looted from an archaeological site. Page 3.

Art History versus Archaeology: Studies in Archaeological Context
A student of art and a student of archaeology nearly come to blows debating the moral aspects of a museum display of ancient pottery from around the world. Page 4.

What is Context in Archaeology?
An investigation of the concept of

Roman Figurine Found in Mexico: Studies in Archaeological Context
A tiny Roman artifact was recovered from a 15th-16th century site in the Mexican city of Toluca. But what does its context mean? Page 2.

Stratigraphy - Earth's Geological and Archaeological Layers
In archaeology, the study of stratigraphy involves looking at the geological and archaeological layers that make up an archaeological deposit to better understand the processes that created the site.

The Domestication History of Chickpeas - Ah! Garbanzo Beans!
Chickpeas were domesticated about 11,000 years ago in what is now Turkey; but the changes instilled by Neolithic people are unlike most other domesticates.

Bottle Gourd (Lagenaria siceraria) - Domestication History
The bottle gourd was domesticated at least three times, the earliest in Asia, some 10,000 to 12,000 years ago.

Three Age System - Categorizing European Prehistory
The Three Age System was tested and became standard practice after its publication by the Danish curator of the National Museum of Denmark CJ Thomsen

The Astounding Effects of Orderly Men - History of Archaeology Part 4
The science of archaeology was constructed with the help of four tidy 19th century thinkers: two museum curators, a biologist and a geologist.

Five Pillars of Archaeological Method - The History of Archaeology Part 5
By the beginning of the 20th century, five important pillars of archaeological method had been established, out of the works of three major scholars.

The History of Archaeology Part 1 - The First Archaeologists
The first archaeologists in the world were Bronze Age kings who dug up the ruins of their predecessors to establish their right to rule.

Neanderthals: Overview and Study Guide
A study guide to our distant cousins, the Neanderthals, including an overview, important facts, archaeological sites, suggestions for further reading and study questions.

Neanderthal Study Guide: A Few Important Facts
A few important facts about Neandertals, part of an intensive study guide about these human ancestors. Page 2.

Neanderthal Study Guide: Archaeological Sites of Neanderthals
A collection of archaeological sites which are considered the remnants of Neanderthal residences and hunting sites. Page 3.

Neanderthal Study Guide: Study Questions and Further Sources of Information
Study questions and sources for further reading about Neanderthals, part of an intensive study guide on our distant hominid ancestor, the Neanderthal. Page 4.

No Vikings in Wisconsin? A Bibliography of the Spencer Lake Mound Prank
Scholarly evidence of the prank perpetuated at Spencer Lake Mounds. Page 3.

The Image of Archaeology in Popular Culture
Dr. Holtorf discusses the methods he will use in his research project on the depiction of archaeologists in the popular culture. Page 2.

Archaeologists in Popular Culture
A new research project by Cornelius Holtorf promises to dig into the image of the archaeologist in popular culture; and whether that image harms or helps the aims of archaeology.

Archaeological Evidence of Amelia Earhart's Fate
Amelia Earhart's disappearance in 1937 has long been a fascinating mystery. In this article, Thomas F. King, Senior Archaeologist of the TIGHAR project, reports on recent archaeological evidence concerning what happened to the aviation pioneer and her copilot, and why it may be only a matter of time before the remaining evidence is eroded away.

Amelia Earhart's Fate: The Nikumaroro Hypothesis
The TIGHAR project searching for traces of Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan was begun in the 1980s, and the earliest archaeological investigations were focused on Nikumaroro island. Page 2.

Amelia Earhart's Fate: Material Evidence
Ric Gillespie's TIGHAR crew spent some time talking to the Nicumaroro island colonists, none of whom live there today, having only lived on the island from 1941 to 1963. Page 3.

Amelia Earhart's Fate: Excavating the Seven Site
In the early 1940s, a human burial was discovered on Nicumaroro island that TIGHAR believes might have been the remains of Amelia Earhart--but the bones are missing. Page 4.

Amelia Earhart's Fate: TIGHAR's Next Step
Fieldwork in 2006 was focused at the

History of Domestic Cats
The modern day cat was permanently domesticated about 4000 years ago, in Egypt; but archaeologists say it may have been closer to 10,000 years ago.

Scholarly Research on the Domesticated Cat
Recent scholarly articles on the science and history of cat domestication. Page 2.

Hisarlik (Turkey) - Scientific Excavations at Ancient Troy
The site of Hisarlik in Turkey, is the probable location of Troy, a principal setting in the Greek poet Homer's great masterpiece, The Iliad.

Priam's Treasure - Hisarlik's Early Bronze Age Gold and Bronze Hoard
Priam's Treasure is what Heinrich Schliemann called a collection of ancient gold and bronze artifacts that could not have been owned by Troy's Priam. Page 2.

Was the Ancient City of Hisarlik the Ancient City of Troy?
Heinrich Schliemann believed that the site of Hisarlik was in fact the ancient city of Troy, site of Homer's Trojan War stories. But was he right?

Heinrich Schliemann and the Discovery of Troy
Heinrich Schliemann, that quintessential archaeologist of the 19th century, claimed to have discovered the real site of Troy. But did he?

AMS (Accelerator Mass Spectrometry) Radiocarbon Dating
AMS radiocarbon dating is a form of radiocarbon dating that is more precise and requires less carbon than conventional radiocarbon methods.

Cuncaicha Rockshelter - Peruvian Hunter-Gatherer Life at 14,000 Feet
Cunchaicha Rockshelter in the high altitudes of the Andes Mountains Peru is among the oldest human occupations in the world at such an elevation.

Muisca Culture - Ancient Gold Workers of the Colombian Andes
The Muisca society were famed gold-workers living in the eastern highland savanna of Colombia from about AD 600-1550.

Material Culture - Artifacts and the Meaning(s) They Carry
Material culture refers to the objects created and kept by ancient societies, that hold a wealth of information about the people who made them.

Torralba and Ambrona - Lower Paleolithic Sites in Spain
Torralba and Ambrona are Lower Paleolithic sites which are not what their excavators thought they were, but still crucial to the study of human behavior.

Tlatelolco - Aztec Tenochtitlan's Sister City in Mexico
Aztec Tlatelolco was a sister city to Tenochtitlan in Mexico; the site of the last stand against the Spanish and the first college in the Americas.

Ivory Bangle Lady - Roman Empire Elite Burial Ivory Bangle Lady
The Ivory Bangle Lady is the name archaeologists have given to an elite burial of a Roman woman from North Africa, buried in the Roman town of York.

Settlement Patterns - Studying the Evolution of Societies
One of the core concepts of the study of archaeology is settlement pattern studies, when archaeologists focus on an entire region, rather than a single site.

The Amazons: Lives and Legends of Warrior Women - A Review
Adrienne Mayor's book The Amazons describes the women of Bronze Age Steppe Societies as a revelation to any woman who thinks she is liberated today.

Plates and Bowls from Qumran
Plates and Bowls from Qumran. Archaeology. Page 11.

Qumran Cave 4
The Dead Sea Scrolls are some 900 fragmented and complete documents recovered from eleven caves located off the western shore of the Dead Sea in Israel. Some of these caves are natural openings in the rugged limestone and dolomite cliffs; others were carved into the soft marl terrace. Written between 250 BCE and about 68-70 CE, the Dead Sea Scrolls are the earliest copies we have of many ancient Jewish manuscripts.

Lustreware - Medieval Islamic Pottery Technique
Lustreware is a decorative technique invented by the 9th century AD Abbasid potters of the Islamic Civilization in what is today Iraq.

Mount Sandel - Mesolithic Settlement in Ireland
Mount Sandel is the name of a small cluster of the oldest houses in Ireland, first built about 9,000 years ago.

Danger Cave - Paleoindian Site of Danger Cave
Danger Cave, located in western Utah in the American southwest, contains evidence of 11,000 years of occupation in the desert southwest.

Viking Silver Hoards - Stores of Ancient Norse Booty
Viking silver is another name referring to a hoard is a stash of (mostly) silver coins, ingots, personal ornaments and fragmented metal left in buried deposits throughout the Viking empire between about AD 800 and 1150.

Sedentism - The Ancient Process of Building a Community
Sedentism is the term archaeologists use to describe the process of settling down.

The Dawn of Humanity - Newly Discovered Homo Naledi Video Review
The Dawn of Humanity explains the significance of the Homo naledi finds in South Africa: coupled with open source publication of the scientific data. Wow.

Can Rising Star Cave be a Lower Paleolithic Cemetery?
Archaeology. Page 2.

Mohenjo-daro - Indus Civilization Capital City in Pakistan
Mohenjo-daro (also spelled Mohanjo-Daro and translated as

Debitage - Waste Flakes from Ancient Stone Tool Processing
Debitage is the collective term used by archaeologists to refer to the sharp-edged waste material left over when someone creates a stone tool

Codex - Ancient Books of Prehispanic Americas
A codex (plural codices) is the technical name for an ancient book or manuscript, specifically those of pre-hispanic America.

Anyang: Enormous Bronze Age Shang Dynasty Capital in China
Decades of excavation at the ancient Chinese city of Anyang have produced over 50,000 written texts from at this Bronze Age capital of the Shang Dynasty.

Big Dig: The New Yorker Looks at Heritage Management in Turkey
Elif Batuman's August 2015 article in The New Yorker is an outsider's view of (some of) the problematic issues of heritage management.

Complexities of Global Cultural Resource Management
Archaeology, like the tango, is not for the rickety of soul. It is expensive, ethically thorny, underpaid, and difficult to learn how to do properly. Page 2.

Lepenski Vir - Mesolithic Village in the Republic of Serbia
The site of Lepenski Vir is located in the Iron Gorge region of Serbia, and a key to understanding Mesolithic ritual and farming practices.

Guide to the Mesolithic Period
The Mesolithic period in European history includes the history of the complex hunter-gatherers who developed the technology to cultivate crops.

Domestication of Cacao - The Delightful Chocolate Bean
Criollo cacao (Theobroma cacao spp cacao) is the name of a small tropical tree with large ovate fruit, native to the northern Amazon of South America but found in ancient planted groves throughout central America.

The Battle for Hamoukar - Evidence for Warfare in Ancient Mesopotamia
The on-going joint excavations at the Mesopotamian site of Hamoukar in Syria by the Oriental Institute and the Syrian Department of Antiquities have discovered evidence of a large organized battle at the site which took place about 3500 BC.

Lattara - Celtic Resistance to Roman Influences in France
The Celtic Iron Age community of Lattara was remarkably resistant to the effects of Etruscan, Greek and Roman influences brought by international trade.

Resisting the Roman Influence at Lattara
The Celtic-speaking residents of Lattara adopted elements of Roman cuisine and house construction, but eschewed the social stratification of Roman society. Page 2.

High and Low Chronologies of the Mediterranean Bronze Age
Figuring out the calendar dates of the ancient pharaohs and the rest of the Mediterranean communities of the Bronze Age is tougher than it seems.

Dating the Santorini Eruption and the End of the Minoan Civilization
Archaeology. Page 2.

The Invaders - Humans, Neanderthals and Dogs - A Review
Pat Shipman's book

Mississippian Chiefdoms
Mississippian chiefdoms were the seats of political power for the Native American groups who lived in the American midwest and southeast between about 1100 and 1500 AD.

Guide to the Paracas Culture
The Paracas culture is what archaeologists call the cultures who were ancestral to the Nasca.

Bibliography of the Paracas Culture
Archaeology. Page 2.

Karakorum: Genghis Khan's Capital City
Karakorum was the 13th century AD capital city of the great Mongol emperor Genghis Khan, located on a cold, windswept plain in Mongolia, about 215 miles west of Ulan Bator.

Workshops and the End of Karakorum
Workshops in Karakorum, how it was abandoned and eventually burned, and sources on the ancient capital of the Mongol Empire. Page 2.

Gomphotheres - Extinct Elephant in the Americas
Gomphotheres were ancient elephants, who lived in the Americas but were dying off by the time that the first humans arrived there, some 20,000 years ago.

Scientific Research on Gomphotheres
Recent scientific research on the ancient American elephant known as the gomphothere. Page 2.

Aztalan - Mississippian Mound Center in Wisconsin
Aztalan is a large Mississippian mound center, located on the west bank of the Crawfish River near Lake Mills in Wisconsin.

The De Soto Chronicles - Spanish Expedition in the American South
The Hernando de Soto Expedition to North America lasted from 1539-1543, and several first hand narratives exist of the men who traveled with him.

La Florida - Garcilaso de la Vega's Account of the Mississippians
Luckily for us, Garcilaso de la Vega (the Inca) wrote extensively about his travels in North America. Page 2.

Board Game History - The Art and Archaeology of Ancient Gaming
The history of board games is at least 4500 years old, as combined religious rite, divination aid, political ploy, and a way to pass an idle Sunday afternoon.

Shipwrecks - Archaeological Study of Ancient Nautical Disasters
There are untold thousands of archaeological shipwrecks in the world; here is a selection of the few that have been excavated.

58 Holes - The Ancient Game of Hounds and Jackals
The ancient board game of 58 Holes was invented about 2200 BC, and it is a precursor to the modern child's game of Chutes and Ladders.

20 Squares - The Royal Game of Ur
The board game called 20 squares is an ancient game similar to backgammon, invented at least 4500 years ago in the Bronze Age Mediterranean region.

Kiva - Ancestral Pueblo Ceremonial Structures
A kiva is a ceremonial structure used by ancient and modern Puebloan societies through the American southwest,

Chetro Ketl - Great House of the Anasazi in Chaco Canyon
Chetro Ketl is a Great House in the Chaco Culture National Historical Park of New Mexico, important for the pioneering use of the tree ring dating method.

The Prehistoric Use of Turquoise - Mining a Blue Green Beauty
Turquoise is found in deposits throughout the world and it was cherished for its beauty by many prehistoric societies, most particularly by those of the American continents

Dugouts and Dugout Dwellings: Immigrant Housing in 19th-century Minnesota
Dugouts were a kind of housing used by European pioneers as first homes as they established their farmsteads in the northern middle west of the United States.

Was there Pre-Columbian Contact between Polynesia and America?
Several strands of evidence suggest, but by no means conclude, that there may have been pre-columbian contact between the cultures of Polynesia and South or Central America

Bibliography for Transpacific Crossings
A bibliography of recent literature about archaeological evidence for prehistoric contacts between the American continents and Polynesian seafarers. Page 2.

Sources on Polynesian Connections in the Americas
Recent archaeological studies of the evidence of Polynesian contacts with the Americas. Page 3.

The End of Chaco Canyon's Dominance
Chaco Canyon's fall has often been attributed to an inability for Chaco's residents to feed themselves. But ... that's not what the evidence shows. Page 2.

The Rise and Fall of Chaco Canyon: The Bonito Phase
The political and economic center of Chaco Canyon in the American southwest flourished between the 9th and 12th centuries AD. Why? And why did it end?

Anasazi - An Introduction to Ancestral Puebloan Societies
The people known as Anasazi, or more properly Ancestral Puebloan, were the people who built Chaco Canyon and the Great Houses that were connected to it.

Anasazi Timeline - Chronology of the Ancestral Pueblo People
Archaeologists define the Anasazi chronology as beginning during the Late Archaic period, and ending 3,000 years later when Chaco Canyon was abandoned.

Breeding Scarlet Macaws in Prehistoric North America: Casas Grandes
The scarlet macaw was an exotic creature in the American Southwest, appearing no later than 1000 AD. How it got there is a continuing mystery.

The Extent and Timing of Casas Grandes Macaw Breeding Program
While only a little of the story about scarlet macaws has been discovered, there are archaeological hints that are slowly revealing the fascinating tale. Page 2.

Arbon Bleiche 3 - Neolithic Lake Dwelling in Switzerland
Arbon Bleiche is the name of a lake or pile dwelling, located on the shores of Lake Constance, Switzerland for fifteen years during the Neolithic period.

Mammoth Bone Dwellings - Houses Made from Elephant Bones
In central Europe about 16,000 years ago, some stylish hunter gatherers built their houses out of ancient elephant bones. What a great idea!

Recent Research on Mammoth Bone Huts
Recent archaeological investigations into the occurrence of mammoth bone huts. Page 2.

Dynastic Rulers and Chronology of Maya Tikal
The chronology of the rise and fall of the Maya civilization city state of Tikal in Guatemala and a list and what is known of its known rulers is provided here.

Dynastic Rulers of Tikal
A listing of the rulers of ancient Tikal, beginning with the legendary and semi-divine Yax Moch Xoc to the mundane last king, Dark Sun. Page 2.

Mummies Alive! Program 6: Hero of Herculaneum - A Review
The Mummies Alive! Hero of Herculaneum uses forensic pathology to attempt to understand the events around the last few moments of the doomed Roman city.

Mummies Alive! Program 2: Buried in a Bog (Review)
Mummies Alive! Buried in a Bog is a program airing on the Smithsonian Channel, describing the elite life and gruesome death of an ancient Irish king.

Mummies Alive! The Gunslinger Mummy (A Review)
The Smithsonian Channel's 2015 program

Mummies Alive! Program 4: The Pharaoh's Secret (Review)
In the history of Ancient Egypt, the pharaoh Seqenenre Tao played a critical role, in spite of his mysterious, violent death during a military loss.

Mummies Alive! Program 5: Inca Maiden (A Review)
Mummies Alive! Inca Maiden reports on the latest information concerning the burial called the Inca Ice Maiden, a perfectly preserved human sacrifices.

Map of the Silk Road - Interactive Map of the Silk Road


Maya Archaeological Ruins in Yucatan


5500 Year-Old Shoe from Areni-1
The 5500-year old shoe discovered at Areni-1 is rather like a moccasin or pampootie, a sole-less piece of leather not meant to last a very long time. Page 2.

Areni 1 - Chalcolithic Site in Armenia
Areni 1 is a dry karst cave in southwestern Armenia where early evidence of shoe construction and wine making have been identified.

Capacocha Ceremony - The Evidence for Inca Child Sacrifices
The capacocha ceremony is the name of an Incan ritual, that included child sacrifice and burial in the high altitude mountains of the vast Inca Empire.

Evidence Supporting Llullaillaco as a Capacocha Ceremony Site
Archaeological evidence from the Llullaillaco site at 22,000 feet above sea level supports the identification of the site as an Incan capacocha ceremony. Page 2.

Inca Ice Maiden: Child Sacrifices on Mount Llullaillaco, Argentina
The Inca Ice Maiden is the unofficial name of a nearly-perfect mummy of a 13-year-old girl, sacrificed in an Inca capacocha ceremony 500 years ago.

When and Where Were Camels Domesticated?
There are two species of quadruped animal of the deserts of the world, both of which have implications for archaeology: the Bactrian and the Dromedary

Lactose Intolerance and Lactase Persistence: Got Milk?
Why some people can drink milk without becoming ill and others cannot is a genetic trait that arose from our domestication and dependence on other mammals.

Bibliography for Lactose Intolerance
A collection of bibliographic sources for the history of lactose intolerance and lactase persistence. Page 2.

Dairy Farming - The Ancient History of Producing Milk
Dairy farming--the tending of cattle, sheep, goats, horses, and camels for the use of their milk and milk products--is at least 9,000 years old.

Bibliography for Dairy Farming
Scholarly sources for the history of dairy farming. Page 2.

The Dancing Girl of Mohenjo-Daro
A 4500 year old statuette of a lovely girl from the ancient Harappan town of Mohenjo-Daro dances across space and time into our imaginations.

Archaeology Elements at Willandra Lakes
A brief description of some of the important sites and investigations at the Willandra Lakes Region in New South Wales, Australia. Page 2.

Willandra Lakes Sites - Evidence of Early Human Occupation in Australia
The Willandra Lakes Region World Heritage Area sites include Lake Mungo in Australia contain archaeological evidence for some of the oldest human occupation in the continent.

Chronology and Kings of the Nabataean Civilization
The Nabataeans may have had a mysterious origin, but their chronology includes the growth and flourishing of a mighty trade power, 2000 years ago.

The Colosseum - Roman Death Trap - NOVA Video Review
NOVA's 2015 video on the architecture and history of the Roman Colosseum presents new data concerning the mechanical functioning of the epic sports arena.

Petra: Lost City of Stone - A Video Review
A 2015 video by WGBH and NOVA introduces the viewer to the ancient, eclectic and cosmopolitan capital of the Incense Route, Petra, Jordan.

Ode (Owed) to the Time Team: A Special for Mick Aston
The Time Team was a mix of science and entertainment: and long time fans desperately want a special in honor of the late Mick Aston.

Ceibal, E-Groups and the Origins of the Maya
Excavations at the Middle Preclassic Maya site of Ceibal have revealed much about the early history and rise of what was to become the Maya Civilization.

Did Anybody Live at Ceibal?
Archaeology. Page 2.

Pea (Pisum sativum L.) Domestication - The History of Peas and Humans
The domestication of peas occurred about 11,000 years ago, making it among the earliest plants ever adapted by human beings for our personal use.

Studying the History and Genetics of Peas
Archaeology. Page 2.

Cenotes - Sinkholes to the Maya Underworld in the Yucatan Peninsula
Cenotes are sacred geological formations found in the Yucatan peninsula, and the only place where the ancient Maya could obtain freshwater.

Recent Archaeological Investigations in Cenotes
A summary of some recent investigations into the study of the Maya sinkholes known as cenotes, used for ritual and sources of drinking water. Page 2.

The Sacred Well of Chichen Itza; - History and Archaeology
Excavations beneath the murky water of the Well of Sacrifices at the Maya archaeological site of Chichén Itzá relate a fascinating story of sacrifice.

Human Remains from the Well of Sacrifices at Chichén Itzá
The evidence for human sacrifice--especially that of children--is inescapable from the collections of the Great Cenote at Chichen Itza. Page 2.

The Northern Frontier of Mesoamerica
The Northern Frontier of Mesoamerica is a rocky arid region, and it was a cultural desert except for 400 years during the Classic period in Mesoamerica

House of the Vestals - Luxury Life in Pompeii
The House of the Vestals is the name of a deluxe residence in the northwestern part of the doomed city of Pompeii, Italy.

Secrets of the Dead: Resurrecting Richard III
Resurrecting Richard III, a new video from PBS Secrets of the Dead, demonstrates how Medieval armorers dressed a king with a curved and twisted spine.

Archaeological Hearths - Features With Benefits
The archaeological remnants of a campfire provide a wealth of information about human behaviors, including subsistence, technology and social practices.

Research on Archaeological Hearths
Recent scholarly research on the archaeological feature known as a hearth, includes how to recognize the remnants of a fire when there's nothing visible. Page 2.

Were There Giants in Prehistory?
I received an email recently from Doug Weller, who is one of the great resources of our profession. Doug is the moderator of the long-lived

Is Anthropology a Science? #AAAFail
A long-standing debate in anthropological circles has become a recent and white-hot discussion on many science blogs--so hot both the New York Times and Gawker

When Did Early Modern Humans Get to Europe?
New research at Kent's Cavern and Grotta del Cavallo have added to recent controversy concerning the innovative capabilities of Neanderthals.

Olmec Heads
Olmec Heads, known more formally as Colossal Heads or Cabezas Colosales, are enormous three-dimensional heads carved out of volcanic basalt ~3,000 years ago.

Ongoing Issues of the Olmec Colossal Heads
Current discussions about the Olmec Heads in the literature, and a list of sources. Page 2.

Secrets of the Dead: Carthage's Lost Warriors (review)
The Secrets of the Dead video called Lost Warriors of Carthage is baloney--fun baloney, but baloney none the less.

Choquequirao (Peru) - Royal Estate of Topa Inca Yupanqui
Choquequirao is a virtually untouched Incan royal estate, known primarily to adventurous hikers, and not far from Machu Picchu.

Roman Aqueducts: Water Control of the Ancient Romans
Roman engineering saw its peak with water control, still seen in the lovely Roman aqueducts 2,000 years later.

Bibliography for Roman Aqueducts
Archaeology. Page 2.

Sacbe - Ancient Maya Road System
Sacbe (plural sacbeob) is the Maya word for stone road, and it refers to the vast transportation network used by the Maya city states to connect to one another.

Mogao Caves - 11th Century Buddhist Shrines in China
The Mogao Caves were excavated in the 9th and 10th century AD by Buddhist monks to house, create and protect one of the largest collections of Buddhist murals and sculpture in the world today.

Bibliographic Sources for Opium Poppy
Archaeologoical evidence for the history of how the opium poppy was domesticated, and a list of the important sites. Page 2.

Opium Poppy: Domestication and History
Scientists are still debating the history of how and when the opium poppy (Papaver somniferum) was domesticated, and what it was used for initially.

Sacbe Routes through the Yucatan
Sacbeob crossed the Yucatán peninsula, connecting the Maya capitals with a formal, processional route that was both trade and political connections . Page 2.

Faxian: 5th Century Chinese Monk and Travel Writer
Faxian was a Buddhist monk in China who visited many Buddhist countries along the Silk Road in the 5th century AD.

Faxian's Travels in Pakistan and India
Faxian spent years wandering through India and Pakistan before returning home. Page 2.

Caravansaries along the Silk and Achaemenid Roads
On the open Silk Road, camel caravans stayed in caravansaries; and even the Achaemenid Royal Road had waystations. Page 2.

Rest Houses and Way Stations - Rest for the Weary Traveler in the Ancient Past
Any ancient road worth its salt had roadside inns for the weary travelers. Archaeological evidence of way stations and posting houses are at least 2,500 years old.

Paisley Caves - Pre-Clovis Western Stemmed Tradition Sites in Oregon
Paisley Caves are a set of seven rockshelters in south central Oregon which are believed to contain the first evidence of human use of the Pacific Coast to colonize the American continents.

Chinchorro Mummies - Burial Customs of the Chinchorro Culture
Chinchorro mummies are burials of the Chinchorro culture of South America, the oldest and most stylistically individual mummies in the world.

Denisova Cave - Only Evidence of the Denisovan People
Denisova cave is a rockshelter located in the Altai mountains, with evidence for hominid occupation beginning 175,000 years ago.

Caravansary - Roadside Inn and Waystation on the Silk Road
A caravansary is a type of roadside inn or way station, which was located on the hundreds of connecting roads making up the ancient Silk Road connecting most of the known world.

Viking Economics - The Economic System of The Vikings
Over the 250 years of the period called the Viking Age, the economics of the people known as the Vikings changed and adapted, and sometimes failed.

Viking Settlement - How the Norse Lived
Viking settlers lived not so much in villages, but rather on isolated, regularly spaced farmsteads surrounded by grain fields, and led by chieftainships with multiple farmsteads.

Pit House - Ancient Residential Structure
A pit house (also spelled pithouse) is a type of dwelling that was excavated partly into the earth, from a few inches to more than three feet.

Eggplant Domestication, History and Genealogy
The eggplant domestication history is a mysterious one, that scholars have yet to figure out.

Wari Empire - South American Society
The Wari Empire (sometimes spelled Huari) was the first urban and state level society in the sierra region of the Andes

Lower Paleolithic (Early Stone Age)
The Lower Paleolithic period (2.7 million to 200,000 years ago) is the first archaeology, that is to say, that period when the first evidence of what scientists consider human behaviors occurred.

Ritual Ceremonies of the Moche Civilization: The Warrior Narrative
The Warrior Narrative is a sequence of ritual events that is hypothesized to have taken place in Moche society, and illustrated in Moche iconography.

Nazca - Timeline and Definition of the Nazca Civilization
The Nazca (often spelled Nasca in archaeological texts) civilization was located in the Nasca region as defined by the Ica and Grande river drainages, on the southern coast of Peru between about AD 1-750.

Nasca Archaeology Sources
Recent scholarly research on the Nasca civilization. Page 2.

Gran Dolina - Lower Paleolithic Cave in Spain
Gran Dolina is a cave site in the Sierra de Atapuerca region of central Spain, with human occupations dated between 300,000 and 880,000 years ago.

Avocado History - Domestication and Spread of Avocado Fruit
The avocado (Persea americana) is a plant domesticated by ancient Americans, discovered and cultivated in central Mexico perhaps 7,000 years ago.

Vitis vinifera - The Origins of the Domesticated Grape
The history of the modern grapevine is difficult to figure out scientifically--because it's been the focus of experimentation for 8,000 years or more.

DNA and Grape History
Although much speculation about where various wines were created exists in the world, science has only found supporting evidence for a few. Page 2.

Ceque System - Sacred Ritual Pathways of the Inca
The word 'ceque' means 'line' in the Inca language Quechua but in reality it meant many things to the Inca, some of which we probably will never understand.

Ethnicity Bibliography: Erikson to Levy
As you might imagine, there are oodles of articles on ethnicity in archaeology. Here are some of the most important. Page 3.

Ethnicity Bibliography: Lightfoot to Sanjek
As you might imagine, there are oodles of articles on ethnicity in archaeology. Here are some of the most important. Page 4.

Ethnicity Bibliography: Schroedl to Williams
As you might imagine, there are oodles of articles on ethnicity in archaeology. Here are some of the most important. Page 5.

Ethnicity: Why Archaeology is a Semi-Soft Science
Ethnicity is one of those concepts that was tailor-made to doom archaeology as a

Ethnicity Bibliography: Armstrong to Emberling
As you might imagine, there are oodles of articles on ethnicity in archaeology. Here are some of the most important. Page 2.

Tomb of Lady Dai (Han Dynasty China)
Lady Dai was the wife of the Marquis of Dai during the Han Dynasty of China about 200 BC, and her tomb included amazingly preserved silk clothing.

Lord of Sipan (Moche Culture, Peru)
The Royal Cemetery of Ur, excavated by the British scholar Leonard Woolley back in the 1930s, included sixteen tombs of Mesopotamian royal personages.

Hochdorf (Iron Age Germany)
The European Iron Age had its share of royal personages, including the unknown chiefdom buried in grand style at Hochdorf, Germany.

Darius the Great (Persian Empire)
Darius the Great was an important king of the Persian empire, as you can see by the amazing rock cut tomb cut for him and three other kings in Iran.

Tutankhamun's Tomb
King Tut's tomb was probably not the most elaborate of New Kingdom Egypt tombs, but it is the one found largely intact.

Tomb of the Terracotta Soldiers (Qin Dynasty China)
The tomb of Shi Huang Di, the Tiger of Qin, contained 7,000 life-sized terracotta soldiers, and thousands of other less-well known sculptures of Qin's court.

Tomb of Eung Tae (Chosun Dynasty Korea)
Eung Tae, the son of a government official of the Joseon dynasty in 16th century Korea, was buried with perfectly preserved letters written by his grieving family.

Royal Cemetery at Ur (Mesopotamia)
The Royal Cemetery of Ur, excavated by the British scholar Leonard Woolley back in the 1930s, included sixteen tombs of Mesopotamian royal personages.

Pyramids of Giza (Old Kingdom Egypt)
The Giza pyramids are spectacular, and even though they were looted of their glories thousands of years ago, they still stand testament to the pharaoh's power.

Cyrus the Great (Achaemenid Dynasty, Persian Empire)
Cyrus the Great was an important imperial king who founded the first dynasty in Persia; his above ground tomb was excavated in the 1970s,

Bibliographic Sources for Tenayuca
A collection of bibliographic sources for the Chichimec capital city of Tenayuca, Mexico.

Coatepantli at Tenayuca
The striking

Tzompantli Altar at Tenayuca
The Altar of the Skull Rack at Tenayuca hid a burial pit.

Tenayuca - Capital City of the Chichimecs
This photo essay introduces you to the little known 15th century late Post-Classic Aztec/Chichimec capital city of Tenayuca, located just a few miles north of Mexico City and open to the public.

Environmental Setting and Geography of Tenayuca
Tenayuca's main pyramid is located in the middle of San Barolo Tenayuca, a few miles north of Mexico City.

Foundation and Historic Development of Tenayuca
Tenayuca was likely founded as early as the Epiclassic period (600-800 AD), but it reached its heyday beginning in the 13th century.

Tenayuca Conquered - Aztec and Spanish Conquests
Tenayuca was conquered twice: once by the Aztec empire, and once, about a hundred years later, by the Spanish.

Architectural Features of Tenayuca
Early archaeological studies identified the basic construction methodology of the Chichimec founders of the city of Tenayuca

The Main Pyramid at Tenayuca
The Main Pyramid of Tenayuca is similar in construction to the Aztec Templo Mayor in Mexico City.

Sculptural Art at Tenayuca
Sculptural art represented at Tenayuca includes references to the Aztec calendar and fire serpents.

Traveling to Toucan House
Just because you're working at an archaeological dig doesn't mean you don't have a long commute.