Archaeology Sitemap - Page 7 2016-09-26

Archaeologist as Mechanic
Travel along unpaved and rough back roads requires a lot of patience, and a sprinkle of auto mechanics

Packing in the Equipment
Packing in equipment to the site is typical for many archaeological field expeditions

Getting Started - Clearing Vegetation off the Elite Residence
Fieldwork at a new archaeological site begins with the removal of vegetation

Revealing the Wall at Toucan House
Excavation at this elite residence is illustrated.

Excavating Outside Toucan House
Excavation of the house exterior continues with trowels and brushes.

Lunch Break at Blue Creek
Lunch Break at Blue Creek. Archaeology.

Laboratory Work at the Maya Research Program
Much of the initial artifact processing during excavations is carried out on site.

Final Phase of Construction at Toucan House
The final phase of construction--the last time anyone lived in this elite Maya residence at Blue Creek--is exposed in this photo from the 2011 excavations.

Mapping the Elite Residence of Toucan House
Mapping excavations at Blue Creek is completed with the use of a total station and 3-d digital scanning.

Penetrating the Floor of the Elite Residence
In this phase of excavation, the plaster floor of the elite residence at Blue Creek is penetrated.

Burial Crypts Beneath Toucan House
Burials placed beneath house floors were identified at Toucan House.

Profile of the Excavated Residential Structure
A profile photograph of the excavated building illustrates its construction methodology.

Summing up the Excavation at Toucan House
Archaeologists learn a great deal from the excavation of sites, but they are finite resources that must be studied carefully.

Archaeology Dig in Progress - A Photo Essay
This photo essay illustrates the progress of how an archaeological site is excavated, from the first clearing to the laboratory work.

Fieldwork at Blue Creek by the Maya Research Program
A photo essay of the progression of an archaeological excavation at a Classic Maya period elite residence at the Blue Creek site in Belize.

Sources on the Shuar - Bibliography for the Headshrinkers of the Amazon
So, why is the Headshrinkers of the Amazon worth watching? Even though Headshrinkers doesn't give us much information about the people who still live in the Amazon rainforest, the video is worth watching, because it illustrates an odd thing discovered by anthropologists studying the Shuar: that westerners are obsessed with death and body parts.

Hunt for the Samurai Subs - National Geographic Week 2009
On Tuesday, November 17, 2009, Nat Geo presents a new video on underwater archaeological investigations searching for imperial Japanese submarines

Sources on WWII Japanese Submarine Wrecks - National Geographic Week 2009
Five purposely scuttled Japanese submarines were scuttled off Oahu in Hawaii in 1946; and four of them have been discovered by the Hawai'i Undersea Research Laboratory.

Bob Ballard at Gallipoli
Although I haven't seen this video—it wasn't included with the National Geographic Expedition Week press kit—according what they did send, Bob Ballard, surely the most popular underwater archaeologist ever, visits the waters off the Gallipoli peninsula in Turkey, in search of World War I shipwrecks.

Piers Gibbon and Head Shrinkers of the Amazon
The real focus of the Amazon Headshrinkers film from National Geographic is not, surprisingly enough, head-shrinking or the people who used to do it. But that's not uninteresting.

National Geographic Expedition Week 2009 - Search for the Amazon Headshrinkers
National Geographic Expedition Week 2009's Search for the Amazon Headshrinkers is disappointing; rather than focused on the people who actually did perform head-shrinking, it's focused on the explorer and his fascination with little shrunken heads.

Yanghai Tombs - Cemetery of Pastoral Nomads in the Turpan Oasis
The Yanghai Tombs include excellently preserved mummies and other organic materials of the Subeixi pastoral nomads of the Turpan Oasis,

Archaeological Evidence from the Yanghai Tombs of Turpan
The preserved remains of numerous plants at the Yanghai Tombs provide evidence that the people interred there had ties to the Mediterranean. Page 2.

The Xinjiang Qanat System of the Turpan Oasis
The system of wells and tunnels which tap the below-ground aquifers of the Turfan basin is one of the great engineering feats of the world.

What is a Qanat, Foggara, Khettera, or Kariz?
Qanats, also known as foggaras or khetteras or karezes, are ancient water control devices invented by the Persians some 3,000 years ago.

What Engineering Skill Does it Take to Build a Qanat?
Building a qanat requires great skill in engineering, great knowledge of local surface and subsurface environments, and great bravery.

When Was Qanat-Assisted Water Control Invented, and How Did it Spread?
Qanats were extensively used and spread throughout the world by the Persian, Roman and Islamic Empires

Sources and Help for Additional Research into Qanat Water Control
Recent investigations into qanats include a number of articles recommending the use of the 3,000-year-old technology to resolve modern water problems.

Environment and Archaeology of the Turpan Oasis
The Turpan Oasis, located in Xinjiang province of western China, was one of the most important stops on the ancient Silk Road. Here's why.

MtDNA, Dating and -- Is Sima de los Huesos a Burial?
Mitochondrial DNA and dating techniques used at Sima de los Huesos deposits provide interesting glimpses into the site's importance. Page 2.

Sima de los Huesos (Spain): Lower Paleolithic Site in the Sierra de Atapuerca
Deposits in the Sima de los Huesos site of northern Spain contain 28 hominid individuals, who together represent evidence of the evolutionary speciation of human kind, Neanderthal, Denisovan and us.

Bibliography for Sima de los Huesos
Recent bibliographic references for the Sima de los Huesos Lower / Middle Paleolithic site in the Atapuerca mountains of Spain. Page 3.

Water Control at the Mayan Site of Nakum, Guatemala
Recent investigations at Nakum have been conducted by the Nakum Archaeological Project, a joint Polish/Guatemalan project. Page 2.

Nakum - Maya Regional Center in Guatemala
Fifteen miles from Tikal, the regional center of Nakum in Guatemala harbors stunning architecture and considerable insight into the Maya civilization.

Archaeology Hotspot: Great Britain, A Book Review
Archaeology HotSpot: Great Britain is a reader-friendly introduction to the archaeology culture, personalities, and scandals of England, Scotland and Wales.

The Archaeological Evidence for Maya Beehives
Maya beehives were differently shaped and maintained than the standard bee boxes you see on the side of the road today. Page 2.

Ancient Maya Beekeeping: The Stingless Bee (Melipona beecheii)
Ancient Mesoamerican societies such as the Maya and Aztec practiced beekeeping for at least two thousand years before the European honeybee arrived.

The Future of Stingless Beekeeping
The ancient art of stingless beekeeping is being revived by small group of enthusiasts, indigenous farmers in the Yucatan peninsula. Page 3.

Stone Tools Recovered from Lomekwi3, Kenya
Three-dimensional images of the stone tools from Lomekwi 3 are online at the African Tools site, and they are very interesting indeed. Page 2.

Kenyanthropus platyops - 3.3 Million Year Old Tool Maker
Kenyanthropus platyops may or may not be a separate species, but it was at the type site that the earliest stone tools were made, 3.3 million years ago.

Dmanisi - Lower Paleolithic site in the Republic of Georgia
Dmanisi is a very old archaeological site, located in the Caucausus region of the Republic of Georgia, where very well-preserved ancient hominid remains have been found.

Beginner's Guide to the Maya Civilization
The Maya Civilization refers to several independent, loosely affiliated city states who shared a cultural heritage beginning about 2,500 years ago.

Maya Civilization Timeline and Partial Kinglist
Because the Maya developed writing, we have a documented timeline for the civilization that has some connection to real dates. Page 2.

Maya Civilization Important Facts
Facts about the economics, politics, warfare, rituals, architecture, and other interesting things to know about the Maya Civilization. Page 3.

Archaeological Sites of the Maya
Archaeological sites and ruins worth visiting of the Maya civilization, articles on the Maya, and odds and ends. Page 4.

Mesopotamian Reed Boats - The Earliest Boat Builders
Ancient boats made of reed basketry and covered in pitch were built about 7500 years ago in ancient Mesopotamia, the earliest boat building known.

The Red Lady of El Miron Cave - An Unusual Upper Paleolithic Burial
Evidence at the Upper Paleolithic

Were There Flowers at the Red Lady's Gravesite?
Recent evidence about the Red Lady of el Miron was the focus of an entire issue of the Journal of Archaeological Science in 2015. Page 2.

La Quemada - Classic Period Center in Zacatecas
La Quemada is an important Classic period archaeological site located in Zacatecas, Mexico, where scholars still wonder at the buildings and purpose.

Residential Patterns at La Quemada
What was it like to live in Classic period Zacatecas state, Mexico? Excavations at La Quemada have provided information about houses and agriculture. Page 2.

Palynology - The Archaeological Study of Pollen
Archaeological palynology is the study of pollen, the virtually indestructible, microscopic, but easily identifiable plant parts in archaeological sites.

How Were the Americas Populated? - Kennewick Man, Part 4
One of the most important questions faced by Kennewick Man researchers is what does this mean for the original colonization of the American continents?

Antique Reproductions - What You Should Know Before You Buy
Antique reproductions are an ethical way to own a piece of the past. Here are some tips to use before buying a reproduction.

Harvesting and Processing Copal Incense in Mesoamerica
Different varieties of copal are available on the market today and were in the past as well, depending both on what plant the resin came from and how it was processed. Page 2.

Copal, the Blood of Trees - Sacred Ancient Maya and Aztec Incense
Copal is an incense made from the resin of trees and burned by people of the Aztec and Maya civilizations in pre-Columbian ritual ceremonies.

Archaeology Digs in Europe
Numerous archaeology digs, field schools and other planned excavations are held each year throughout the countries in Europe. Here are a few of the recent listings.

Shamans - Religious Specialists in Altered States of Consciousness
A shaman is a type of religious specialist who uses altered states of consciousness to directly interact with gods and supernatural agents.

Tree Resins: The History of Human Exploitation of Saps and Syrups
Tree resins--syrups, saps, and oozings--have been harvested and exploited by humans for thousands of years for loads of uses: here are a few.

Dedicatory Offering of Maya Blue Copal at Chichén Itzá
A little bowl recovered from the bottom of Chichen Itza's sacred well tells us a bit about the ancient use of copal and sacrifice in the Maya religion.

Stone Boiling - Ancient Cooking Method
Stone boiling is what archaeologists and anthropologists call the cooking method where you put hot rocks into liquid, as a way of getting your soup hot. This method dates at least to Middle Paleolithic Period.

Chogha Golan or Choga Khulaman - Pre-Pottery Neolithic Site in Iran
Chogha Golan is the name of an important tell in the Mehran Plain of Iran, where early evidence for agricultural processes has been identified.

Mixed Cropping Agriculture Technique
Mixed cropping, also known as inter-cropping or co-cultivation, is a type of agriculture that involves planting two or more of plants simultaneously in the same field.

The Incense Road - Ancient International Trade in Spices and Resins
The Incense Road refers to the hazardous routes through the craggy desert of the Arabian peninsula used to deliver luxury goods to the Mediterranean.

Nabataeans and the Ancient Incense Road
Archaeological and historical studies of the ancient working Incense Road explain why the Nabataeans were what Pliny called the

Arabian Water Control of the Nabataeans
Water control, spice trade and recent research about the Nabataean culture of the Arabian peninsula, 2000 years ago. Page 2.

Beginner's Guide to the Nabataean Civilization
The Nabataean civilization were original nomadic traders who dominated the frankincense market--and the Incense Route--in Arabia about 2000 years ago.

Why Did People Move to Teotihuacan?
Why such a huge influx of foreigners arrived in Teotihuacan between 200-350 is something of a puzzle, but it may well have had to do with natural disasters. Page 2.

Residential Barrios of Teotihuacan - Immigrant Life in Prehispanic Mexico
The residential compounds of Teotihuacan hold evidence of the in-migration of tens of thousands of workers who flocked there between AD 200-350.

Ceiba - The Maya Symbol of the Universe
Ceiba is one of the highest tree one can find in the Tropics of Central America and it was considered by the ancient Maya a symbol of the universe....

The Great Serpent Mound of Ohio - Ancient Snake Effigy
The Great Serpent Mound is a 2,300 year old monument made of earth formed into the effigy of a snake, some 1,300 feet long on an Ohio hilltop.

The Serpent Motif at Great Serpent Mound
Recent research on the glorious Serpent Mound clarifies when it was first built, and when it was reused. Page 2.

Hadrian's Wall - Roman Empire Fortification between England and Scotland
Hadrian's wall is a rock wall built by the Roman emperor Hadrian to mark a northern boundary between Roman England and Scotland.

The Easter Island Collapse: What Science has Learned
For decades, scholars have debated what caused the collapse of the society of the Polynesian mariners who first colonized Easter Island. Here's the latest.

The Effects of European Contact on Rapa Nui
The effect of European contact with the islanders of Rapa Nui was the real catastrophe which befell the society on Easter Island. Page 2.

Figure D in the Sacrifice Ceremony at Sipán
Figure D in the Sacrifice Ceremony at Sipn. Page 12.

Mural Representation of the Warrior Narrative - El Brujo
Mural Representation of the Warrior Narrative - El Brujo. Page 4.

Carob Logs in Place over Elite Burial, Sipán, Peru
Carob Logs in Place over Elite Burial, Sipn, Peru. Page 9.

Documentary Film Production at Sipán
Documentary Film Production at Sipn. Page 10.

Figures B and C of the Sacrifice Ceremony
Figures B and C of the Sacrifice Ceremony. Page 7.

The Moche Sacrifice Ceremony
A fineline drawing of the Moche Sacrifice Ceremony. Page 3.

Primary Burial, New Tomb at Sipán
Primary Burial, New Tomb at Sipn. Page 13.

Moche Archaeology at Sipán
Moche Archaeology at Sipn

Pyramids at Sipán (Peru) Moche Archaeology at Sipán
Pyramids at Sipn (Peru) Moche Archaeology at Sipn. Page 2.

Staff of the Sipán Project, 2007
Staff of the Sipn Project, 2007. Page 8.

Reconstruction of the Tomb of Lord of Sipán (Sipán, Peru)
Reconstruction of the Tomb of Lord of Sipn (Sipn, Peru). Page 5.

Warrior Priest (Figure A), Sacrifice Ceremony
Warrior Priest (Figure A), Sacrifice Ceremony. Page 6.

Workmen Examine Copper and Gold Artifacts in Elite Burial
Workmen Examine Copper and Gold Artifacts in Elite Burial. Page 11.

Maya Riviera - Maya Archaeology to Visit on Mexico's Eastern Coast
Important Mayan sites open to visitors along the Riviera Coast of Yucatan and Quintana Roo, Mexico.

Proto-Indo European Language - Theories of its Origin
Proto-Indo-European (or PIE) is an ancient language reconstructed from a handful of words shared by over 400 ancient and modern Eurasian languages.

Genetics and Proto-Indo European
DNA studies report on the ancient humans who have been identified as having played a possible role in the creation and spread of PIE. Page 2.

Sigatoka Sand Dunes - Salt Production at a Post-Lapita Village in Fiji
The Sigatoka Sand Dunes are on the island of Vitu Levi in Fiji, where a small, household-level production of sea salt occurred during the 7th century AD.

Introduction to the Lapita Cultural Complex - Colonizers of the Pacific
The Lapita culture or Lapita cultural complex is the founding cultural group who settled Melanesia and the Pacific islands between 3600 and 2900 years ago.

Palenque Aqueduct Systems - Water Control at the Maya Capital
Palenque's aqueduct system and classic Maya water management

Krasnyi Yar - Horse Domestication in Kazakhstan
Krasnyi Yar is a site in Kazakhstan where the earliest evidence yet for horse domestication has been discovered.

Mocha Island - Polynesian Settlement in South America
Mocha Island museum collections contain archaeological evidence that may support claims that Polynesian seafarers discovered South America, ca. 1000 AD

Archaeology of the Iliad: The Mycenaean Culture
Homer's classic tales of war and civilization the Iliad and the Odyssey are set in the culture that archaeologists call the Mycenaean. Here's a description of the Mycenaeans and how they lived their lives. Page 2.

Frankincense - History of the Ancient Aromatic Tree Resin
Frankincense, an aromatic resin from a tree which grows in arid Arabia, east Africa and India, is one of the best known, and most desired incenses in the world.

Frankincense and the Ancient International Spice Trade
Frankincense was part of the international Incense Road, that crisscrossed Arabia, Africa, India and the Mediterranean. Page 2.

When Were the American Continents First Colonized?
Scientists are sure that the original colonists of the Americas arrived at least 15,000 years ago--but how they got there is still under debate.

Beringia and Climate Control
How does the Bering Strait affect climate control? A collection of scholarly articles on the history of the Bering Land Bridge. Page 2.

Bering Land Bridge Between Russia and North America
The Bering Land Bridge allowed human population into the Americas some 15,000 years ago: and scholars suggest it may partly regulate global climates.

Archaeology and History Along the Silk Road
Archaeological investigations extend the known age of the ancient road connecting Asia and central Europe known as the Silk Road.

The Science and History of the Mysterious Nazca Lines
The Nazca Lines are large geometric animal and abstract geoglyphs from rocks in a desert in northern Peru.

Bibliography for the Nazca Lines
Recent research on the Nazca culture of South America, authors of the fabled Nasca Lines. Page 2.

Architectural Details of the Colosseum
A sophisticated system of subfloor constructions allowed the spectacles of wild animal fights and sea battles within the Roman Colosseum amphitheater. Page 2.

Recent Archaeological Studies of the Roman Colosseum
Recent investigations into the Roman Colosseum has revealed much about the mechanisms that enabled the spectacles and preservation of the amphitheater.

The Coliseum: Edgar Allan Poe's Poem About the Lone Ampitheatre
Like other Victorian writers, Edgar Allan Poe visited the Colosseum and came back a changed man. Here is one version (of several) of his poem written in 1833.

The Coliseum: Lord Byron's Child Harold and Archaeology
The Victorian poet Lord Byron visited the Roman Colosseum (spelled in his version the Coliseum), as did many of his fellow writers and poets.

The Qom Technique of Making Faience
Recent scholarly research on the making of faience, the ancient Egyptian method creating beautiful gem-like ornaments. Page 2.

Faience - The World's First High Tech Ceramic
Ancient faience is a manufactured material imitating bright colors and gloss of semi-precious gems first used in Egyptian jewelry about 5500 years ago.

Tobacco History - Origins and Domestication of Nicotiana
The history of tobacco begins someplace in the Andes Mountains of Bolivia or northern Argentina

Coosa - Mississippian Native American Polity in Southeastern United States
Coosa was a thriving Native American polity of 50-80 villages under a single paramount chief, visited by the Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto in 1540.

Towns of the Mississippian Coosa Polity
Towns that were at least partly associated with the Coosa polity of the Mississippian culture include mound centers like Little Egypt and Etowah Mounds. Page 2.

Beginner's Guide to the Maritime Silk Road
The Maritime Silk Road refers to the vast international networks of ships and trading ports, connecting Africa, Asia and India beginning about 2,000 years BC.

Sailing the Maritime Silk Road
The best known feature of the maritime silk road is the sailors: Zheng He and Sinbad and other fabled sailors, pirates and merchants of the Indian, Arabian and China seas. Page 2.

Black Drink - Source of Caffeine for Prehistoric North America
Black drink is the name given to a tea used by North American indigenous groups for ceremonies and other rituals, created from the American holly plant.

The Ritual Importance of Black Drink at Cahokia
Archaeological evidence in North America indicates that black drink was an important part of the Mississippian culture ritual, particularly at Cahokia. Page 2.

Flax Domestication History - When People First Used Flax Oil and Fiber
The history of the domestication of flax is a long one, with the cultivators picking several different traits to nurture over the course of some 5,000 years.

Later Flax History, and Resources for Further Study
Scholarly resources on the history of flax domestication. Page 2.

Beginner's Guide to the Culture and Ecology of Easter Island
Recent studies of the original culture of the people who settled Easter Island have revealed much about the agriculture, economy and architecture.

Archaeological Research on Easter Island
Recent scientific research on the archaeology of Easter Island includes evidence concerning the collapse, the making of moai and the economy of the Rapa Nui society. Page 2.

Macuahuitl - The Wooden Sword of Aztec Offensive Armory
The macuahuitl is a Nahua term referring to an offensive weapon used by the Aztecs in combat. It is sometimes called a sword even if this tool bears no resemblance with the European sword.

Social Aspects of South American Moche Society
Recent scholarly research into the ancient Moche culture of the northern coast of Peru. Page 2.

The Moche Culture - Guide to the History and Archaeology
The Moche culture were a highly ritualized South American society, who lived along the arid coast of what is now Peru between 100 and 800 AD.

Why Don't We Call Them Cro-Magnon Any More?
Cro-Magnons are what scholars now call Anatomically Modern Humans or Early Modern Humans, mostly because Cro-Magnon refers to to a specific archaeological site which isn't really typical of the rest

Early Modern Human Bibliography
A brief bibliography on early modern humans. Page 2.

Khao Sam Kaeo - Southeast Asian Port on the Maritime Silk Road
The Iron Age community of Khao Sam Kaeo was a crucial port used on the Maritime Silk Road between 400 and 100 BC.

Khao Sam Kaeo and Cultural Connections
Bead making at the site of Khao Sam Kaeo site on the Kra Isthmus in Thailand was a blend of Asian artisan techniques and materials. Page 2.

Aztec Conquest of the Otomi Capital of Xaltocan
Recent scholarly research on the ancient Aztec and Otomi capital city of Xaltocan, Mexico shows that the Aztec Conquest of Xaltocan was not typical. Page 2.

Xaltocan - Otomí Polity and Aztec Empire Site in Mexico
Xaltocan was the capital of the successful independent Otomi polity for several centuries before it was conquered by the Aztec Empire in 1430...

Aztecs - Guide to the Warfare, Rituals and Economics of the Aztecs
Facts and figures about the Aztec civilization, including population size, areal extent, crops grown and rituals practiced. Page 3.

Aztec Pyramids and Ruins - Study Guide to the Ruins of the Aztec Culture
Archaeological sites in the Aztec hegemony are not as well known as their Maya counterparts, in part because so many were destroyed at the Spanish colonization. But there are a few left... Page 4.

Aztecs - Study Guide Sources and Study Questions for the Aztecs
Many papers and books have been written about the Aztec; here's a list of the most important and useful, as well as some study questions. Page 5.

Beginner's Guide to the Aztec Empire of Central Mexico
The Aztec empire was the last great precolumbian civilization on the American continents. This study guide is a capsule description of the important elements of the Aztecs, some facts and figures, some study questions, and a list of suggested readings.

Aztec Culture - Timeline and King List
The Aztec culture had 10 kings ruling over the capital city of Tenochtitlan, beginning with Acamapichtli and ending with the doomed Cuauhtemoc. Page 2.

Chronology of Easter Island - Important Events on Rapa Nui
The dates of the events of Easter Island have been debated for as long as people rediscovered the island: this timeline summarizes the latest information.

El Arenal-1 - Evidence for Precolumbian Polynesian Contact in Chile
The site of El Arenal-1 in Chile, contains documented evidence of precolumbian contact by Polynesian seafarers to the coast of Chile.

The Statues that Walked - Moving Easter Island's Moai (Book Review)
A book review of the 2011 book about Easter Island, written by scholars Terry Hunt and Carl Lipo, that discusses a possible method used to move the enormous moai.

The Mystery of Easter Island - Moving the Moai (Video Review)
The Mystery of Easter Island is the latest and best of the videos on Rapa Nui, in which the famous moai are made to walk across the landscape.

Hallstatt Culture - Early European Iron Age Culture
The Hallstatt culture is what archaeologists use to describe the earliest group to invent and adopt iron smelting in central Europe.

Guide to the European Iron Age
The European Iron Age is that period in Europe when the production of iron created a burgeoning growth of urban dwellings.

Social Changes during the European Iron Age
Archaeology. Page 2.

Rano Raraku - The Volcanic Source for the Moai Statues of Easter Island
The giant carved statues on Easter Island were quarried from one of two locations on Easter Island: and they hold some secrets to their manufacture.

Megafauna - A Definition of the Largest Animals
Megafauna is a term used by archaeologists and paleontologist to refer to large-bodied mammals, that is, any mammal weighing more than 100 pounds (45 kilograms)

Time Team Archaeology
The madly popular reality television series called Time Team debuted on Channel 4 in the United Kingdom in 1994, with its American cousin starting debuting on PBS in 2009. Each episode in the program sends a team of professional archaeologists into the field to investigate a new site, and educate its viewers on the ancient, and not so ancient history of our planet.

The Moche Ceremonial Complex of El Brujo (Peru)
El Brujo is the name of a Moche culture complex, and a major religious center of the Moche between the first and seventh centuries AD.

Huaca de la Luna - Moche City Center in Peru
Huaca de la Luna is a large Moche settlement located within the greater Moche site and adjacent to the Huaca del Sol.


A Beginner's Guide to the Neolithic Period in Human History
The Neolithic period, broadly defined, is when human beings began to produce their own food--growing plants and tending animals.

Aztecs and the Aztec Civilization
Aztecs are the collective name given to seven Chichimec tribes of northern Mexico

Archaeology of the Iliad: The Mycenaean Culture - Homeric Questions
Homer's classic tales of war and civilization the Iliad and the Odyssey are set in the culture that archaeologists call the Mycenaean. Here's a description of the Mycenaeans and how they lived their lives.

Upper Paleolithic Textiles from Dzudzuana Cave
Archaeological investigations at Dzudzuana Cave in the Republic of Georgia have recovered flax (Linum usitatissimum) fibers from four Upper Paleolithic occupations, the oldest some 32,000 years old.

Dzudzuana Cave - Upper Paleolithic Site in Georgia
Dzudzuana Cave, where dyed flax fibers dated to ~27,000-32,000 years RCYBP were discovered, is located in the Republic of Georgia, just a handful of kilometers from the similarly dated Ortvale Klde site.

Evidence for Upper Paleolithic Textiles
Previously reported evidence for the Upper Paleolithic use of textiles comes from Dolni Vestonice and Pavlov, both in the Czech Republic, both dated to the Late UP and dated between 29,000-32,000 BP, or approximately the age as Dzudzuana Cave.

Textile and Cordage Use in the Upper Paleolithic
Paleolithic textile technology included a range of plant fibers and a broad variety of basketry, hunting tools and woven materials apart from clothing.

Ancient America: Archaeology of American Civilizations
The continents of North and South America were 'discovered' by the European civilizations in the late 15th century AD, but their civilizations were vast and complex long before the first European landed. The following are a taste of the complexity of the civilizations of ancient America.

Black Death - The Second Great Bubonic Plague Pandemic
The Black Death was the name given to an episode of the devastating bubonic plague in Europe between 1348 and 1351 - but it wasn't the first one.

Bibliography for the Medieval Black Death
Recent scholarly research about the medieval black death. Page 2.

East Smithfield Plague Cemetery - Medieval Black Plague Burials
The cemetery of East Smithfield, England, is where at least 2,400 victims of the Black Plague were buried in the mid-14th century. It has become the focus of considerable scientific research.

Bibliography for East Smithfield Plague Cemetery
Bibliography on East Smithfield cemetery, a 14th century mass burial in London England, for victims of the Black Death. Page 2.

Stonehenge: A Summary of Findings at the Megalithic Monument
Stonehenge is a megalithic rock monument of 150 enormous stones set in a purposeful circular pattern, the main portion of it built about 2000 BC.

Stable Isotope Analysis in Archaeology - A Plain English Introduction
This essay is a vastly over-simplified discussion of why stable isotope research works. If you are a stable isotope researcher, the imprecision of the description will drive you mad; but it is a fairly accurate description of the natural processes used by stable isotope researchers today.

Who Were the Historic Vikings?
The Vikings were a farming culture, who originated in Scandinavia about the 4th century AD, and began to spread out and conquer the Europe in the 9th century AD. They were mostly defeated or subsumed into other cultures by the 13th century AD.

Solstice at Stonehenge - Winter 2010
Revellers gather for a sunrise service at Stonehenge on December 22, 2010 in Wiltshire, England. Hundreds of people gathered at the famous historic stone circle to celebrate the sunrise closest to the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year. (Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)

Stonehenge - Summer Solstice 2005
A thick white mist bringing in the midsummer sunrise is helped along by this guy jumping off the top of one of the stones at Stonehenge

Stonehenge - Winter Solstice 2006
There are, after all, two solstices in the year, but I suspect the weather rarely cooperates on the Salisbury Plain in December.

Stonehenge - Summer Solstice 2007
The dawn of 2007's summer solstice was one of those gaudy high-colored exotic mornings that you sometimes get on our lovely planet.

Stonehenge - Summer Solstice 2008
The sunrise didn't permit any great environmental photos in 2008, but I suspect this is what most of the solstice day is like at Stonehenge

Stonehenge Solstice - Summer 2010
AMESBURY, ENGLAND - JUNE 20: Solstice participants wait for the midsummer sun to rise over the megalithic monument of Stonehenge on June 20, 2010 on the edge of Salisbury Plain, west of Amesbury, England. Thousands of revellers began gathering for Sunset at the 5,000 year old stone circle to see the sunrise on the following day, which is the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere and is known as the Summer Solstice.

Winter Solstice 2011
WILTSHIRE, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 22: Druids, pagans and revellers cheer as the sun rises at Stonehenge on December 22, 2011 in Wiltshire, England. The unseasonable warm weather encouraged a larger than normal crowd to gather at the famous historic stone circle to celebrate the sunrise closest to the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year. (Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)

Summer Solstice 2012
Summer solstice at Stonehenge in 2012 was marred by buckets of rain: but it didn't stop revellers from attending and celebrating the longest day.

Stonehenge - Summer Solstice 2004
The summer solstice of 2004 at Stonehenge had an amazing darkish mist, for a truly weird effect

Solstice at Stonehenge
A collection of amazing pictures taken by professional photographers of the Neolithic monument of Stonehenge during the Solstice celebrations.

Stonehenge - Summer Solstice 2006
A man stands on top of Stonehenge as the sun rises over Salisbury Plain on June 21, 2006 in Amesbury, England.

Stonehenge - Summer Solstice 2003
A reveler greets the sun as it rises above Stonehenge on the day of the Summer Solstice June 21, 2003 in Wiltshire, England.

C3, C4, and CAM Plants: Understanding Plant Processes
Most plants fall into three groups, based on their chemical makeup: C4, C3, and CAM; archaeologists are particularly interested in C3 and C4 plants. Here's why.

Monumental Architecture - A Definition
Monumental architecture refers to large man-made structures of stone or earth.

Songo Mnara - Swahili Coast Site in Tanzania
The Songo Mnara site is a stonehouse community closely associated with Kilwa culture, and located on the island of the same name off the coast of Tanzania

Discovery of the Mural Paintings of Bonampak
Although known to the local Lacandon Maya people, Bonampak's mural paintings were first seen by non-Maya eyes in the early 20th century

Bonampak Murals Room 1 - The Courtly Ceremony
The mural paintings of Room 1 portray a scene of courtly life, with an elaborated ceremony, centered around the king Chan Muwan and the royal family.

Bonampak Murals Room 3 - Battle Aftermath and Bloodletting Rituals
The Bonampak murals from Room 3 depict the events after the successful battle at court and the royal family performing a bloodletting ritual....

Eastern North American Neolithic - Neolithic in Eastern North America
Eastern North America was one of several starting points for agriculture in the American continents.

Archaeology Digs in Asia
Each year, archaeology digs are undertaken all over Asia, including field schools and professional excavations. Here's a sample.

Bonampak Paintings Room 2 - The Mural of the Battle
The Mural of the Battle, from room 2 at Bonampak, is probably the most famous example of Maya painting. The scene portrays in detail images of one-to-one combat, captive taking, and weaponry...

Pre-Aurignacian Levels Discovered at the Kostenki Site
Archaeological and chronological data from the Kostenki site in Russia have convinced researchers that beneath a previously identified 40,000 year-old Aurignacian component representing Early Modern Humans is an early, previously unknown Initial Upper Paleolithic component, with secure dates at least as early as any other known modern human occupation in Europe.

Vindolanda - Roman Outpost at Hadrian's Wall
Vindolanda was one of a handful of Roman forts constructed along the Stanegate Road near the border of what is today Scotland and England.

Archaeology at Britain's Vindolanda Site
Recent scholarly studies on the archaeology of Vindolanda and the Vindolanda tablets. Page 2.

Bonampak - Home of Famous Maya Murals in Chiapas, Mexico
Bonampak is a classic Maya site in Chiapas, Mexico, famous for the extraordinary mural paintings that entirely cover the walls of one of its buildings...

Lives in Ruins - Marilyn Johnson's New Book about Archaeologists
Marilyn Johnson's 2014 book, Lives in Ruins: Archaeologists and the Seductive Lure of Human Rubble is a perceptive look at the practitioners of the dark art.

Urban Archaeology - What is Urban Archaeology
The branch of archaeological science called urban archaeology is concerned with the study of cities.

Provenience, Provenance, Let's Call the Whole Thing Off
After my poll concerning whether one uses 'provenience' or 'provenance' to refer to the origin location of a particular object, I've received a fairly

Andean Preceramic Period - First Settlement of the Andes Mountains
The earliest part of Andean chronology is the preceramic period, which starts with the first colonization of South America.

What is a Field School? Experiencing Archaeology for Yourself
Want to gain experience in archaeology? Thinking about a career or just looking for some interesting things to do with your summer vacation? Then the field school is for you.

Roads of Rome - The Viae Publicae of the Roman Empire
Roman roads (called Viae Publicae in Latin) were an extremely important construction project for imperial Rome, as they allowed for communication and control of the vast Roman empire throughout Europe.

Cave Paintings - Peering into the World's Ancient Art Studios
Some of the world's oldest art is also the loveliest - cave paintings throughout the world. Here you'll find several of the best examples.

Iron Age Sites - Archaeological Sites of the European Iron Age
Iron Age occupations found in central, northern and western Europe have many similarities.

Rougiers - Medieval Walled Village of Rougiers
The medieval rural walled hilltop village near Rougiers, France was occupied in the 12th century, and then deserted.

Oppida is the word given to the archaeological remains of fortified settlements throughout Europe by archaeologists, from a word used by Julius Caesar.

Heuneburg - German Hillfort called Heuneburg - Heuneburg Germany
Heuneburg is the name of an early Iron Age (Hallstatt period) urban center, one of the oldest centers north of the Alps.

Fortified Settlement - Archaeological Site Type
A fortified settlement is a dwelling, village or urban settlement in prehistory (or history for that matter) that has defensive structures such as moats, enclosures or ramparts

Crickley Hill - Neolithic and Iron Age Fort of Crickley Hill
Crickley Hill is an important Neolithic and Iron Age occupation in Gloucestershire, primarily known for its archaeological evidence of a violent history.

Viking History - Guide to the Ancient Norse
The Viking Age was a time of great change on the European continent. The Viking Age traditionally refers to the period in northern Europe between the first Scandinavian raid on England, in AD 793, and ends with the death of Harald Hardrada in 1066, in a failed attempt to attain the English throne.

Chili Peppers - Domestication of Capsicum
Evidence for the domestication of chili peppers suggests that it was domesticated in South America.

Bibliography for the Chili Pepper: Recent Scholarly Research into Capsicum
Recent archaeological and other scientific research on the history of the domestication of chiles. Page 2.

African Iron Age - Timeline and Definition
In Africa, unlike the Europe and Asia, the Iron Age is not prefaced by a Bronze or Copper Age, but rather all the metals came at once.

Fountains and Water Control on the Inca Road
Because the Inca road crosses so many different kinds of terrain, water and water control was an important part of the construction and planning.

Qollqa - Storage on the Inca Trail - Qollqa
Inca storage houses or silos alled qollqa or colca in Quechua can be found in many places along the Inca road.

Tampu - Inca Roadside Lodgings called Tampu
Along the Inka Trail system were dotted tampu (or tambu), roadside lodgings at a day's walk apart, approximately one every 20 kilometers of the roadway.

Bridges on the Inca Trail
Bridges on the Inca Road were built of a very wide variety of methods, including pontoon rafts, wood beams or stone slabs.

Inca Road Sources and Further Information
Bibliographic sources for the photo essay on the Inca Road system.

Road Construction on the Inca Trail
Since wheeled vehicles were unknown to the Inca, the surfaces of the Inca Road did not need to be smooth and flat. Some of the roadways were paved with stone, but most were natural dirt pathways between 1-4 meters in width.

Inca Shrines on the Inca Road
One feature commonly found on the Inca road are shrines--carved rock features in many places along the road where people could worship, rest, and enjoy the view.

Tunnels on the Inca Trail
Tunnels were excavated in some places along the trail to allow for passage of people and animals.

Inca Trail - Photo Essay of the Ancient Road System
The Inca trail system was an essential part of the success of the Inca Empire, which included an estimated 40,000 kilometers of road way

Recent Research at Gorham's Cave
Archaeology. Page 2.

Gorham's Cave, Gibraltar - The Last Neanderthal Standing
Evidence for modern human behavior from Neanderthals at Gorham's Cave on the Rock of Gilbraltar includes hashmarks carved into the back of the cave.

Swahili Economy
The Swahili economy was primarily but not exclusively based on international trade

Thule Tradition in the High Canadian Arctic
The Thule Tradition is the name given to the ancestors of the modern day Inuit peoples of the Canadian High Arctic, who have lived in the region for at least a thousand years.

A Bibliography of the Thule Tradition
Recent scholarly articles on the Inuit Thule Tradition suggests a reassessment of the timing and origins of the Thule people is necessary. Page 2.

Underwater Archaeology Digs
Several universities around the world conduct the specialized form of field school that takes place under the lakes and oceans of our planet. Here's a selection of archaeology digs taken in the watery deep.

Archaeology Tour Operators
An archaeology tour is an escorted vacation package tour that specializes in visiting and learning about archaeological sites. Here's a selection of companies that provide archaeology tours for vacationers. The companies listed here have been selected to exclude volunteer dig opportunities or tours that involve collecting, legally or otherwise, artifacts to take home.

Kathu Pan - Middle Paleolithic Spearpoint Use in South Africa
Kathu Pan is an archaeological site in central South Africa, where evidence of very very early use of spears is in evidence.

Bloodletting Definition in Archaeology
Bloodletting is an ancient rite, practiced throughout the world, but most particularly in Central American cultures such as the Olmec and Maya.

Norwegian Immigrant Anna Byberg in Minnesota
What life was like in a dugout dwelling, in the 19th century Minnesota. Page 2.

What is a Feature to an Archaeologist?
A feature is a word archaeologists use when they don't know what it is they've discovered.

How and When Sheep were First Domesticated
The sheep (Ovis aries) is one of the earliest animals ever domesticated, from the mouflon and more than 10,000 years ago.

Bibliography of Sheep Domestication
Scholarly articles on the domestication of sheep. Page 2.

Tipi Rings - Archaeological Remains of Tipis
Tipi rings are rings of boulders, remnants of Plains Indian tipis in North America, their stories told by oral history, ethnography, and archaeology.

Scholarly Research on Tipi Rings
Recent scholarly research on Plains Indian tipi rings. Page 2.

The Ancient Cache of Mummies: Determining Who Was Who in Ancient Egypt
Identifying the names of ancient Egyptian mummies is not as simple as one might think.

Ancient Medical Books of the Egyptians
Archaeologists have identified a dozen of medical manuscripts, written by the ancient Egyptians of the Middle and New Kingdoms.

Modern Studies into Ancient Egyptian Medicine
Recent scholarly research into ancient Egyptian medicine. Page 2.

Cave Paintings - Parietal Art of the Ancient World
Cave art refers to paintings, murals, drawings, etchings, carvings, and pecked artwork on the interior of rockshelters and caves.

Bibliography of Cave Art
A bibliography of recent articles on rock art and cave painting. Page 2.

Eel Point - Paleocoastal Site in the Channel Islands of Eel Point
Eel Point is an archaeological site located on the central western shore of San Clemente Island, a Channel Island located off the California coast.

Arene Candide - Upper Paleolithic Burial of Arene Candide
The site of Arene Candide is a large cave located on the Ligurian coast of Italy near Savona, in which the richly appointed grave of an Upper Paleolithic young man was discovered.

Megamiddens in the Later Stone Age of South Africa
The megamiddens of South Africa are enormous heaps of mussel shells, deposited between 3000 and 2000 years ago, along the shore line of the Western Cape province of South Africa, north and west of Cape Town

What Are Mega-Middens?
A megamidden is a shell midden--a trash heap made up primarily of the shells of mussels--with an extremely large volume.

The Later Stone Age and Megamiddens
The people who built the huge mounds of shell lived during the Later Stone Age in South Africa, between about 6,500 and 4,400 years ago.

Black Mussels - Choromytilus meridionalis
Black mussels were the main resource found inside megamiddens.

How Were Megamiddens Created?
Archaeologists believe the main purpose of the megamiddens was, of course, shellfish processing, and probably drying of meat for later use.

Experimental Archaeology and Megamiddens
How long does it take for a megamidden to be built, and what was the intent of builders?

Rock Art and Megamiddens
Rock art is known from Elands Bay and Steenbokfontein caves in South Africa, both with megamidden period occupations.

Living on the Coast of South Africa
The megamiddens of South Africa are enormous heaps of mussel shells, deposited between 3000 and 2000 years ago, along the shore line of the Western Cape province of South Africa, north and west of Cape Town,

Bibliographic Sources for Megamiddens
Bibliographic sources for the megamiddens of South Africa

Aleutian - Prehistory of Aleutian Islands, Alaska - Aleutian
The history of the Aleutian, and the Aleutian Tradition in archaeology.

Cassava or Manioc - the Domestication of Cassava
Cassava (Manihot esculenta), also known as manioc, tapioca, yuca and mandioca, is a domesticated species of tuber, originally domesticated on the southwestern border of the Amazon Basin.

Crescents - North American Chipped Stone Tool Type
Crescents are a type of chipped stone tool--but scholars have yet to decide exactly what its function was.

Exporting Chinese Porcelains - A History
Chinese porcelains were produced and exported from kilns to the outside world beginning in the 13th century AD, an early example of how international trade began.

Alexandria - Egyptian Capital of Alexander the Great
Alexandria was the capital of Egypt, conceived and built for the conqueror Alexander the Great.

Middle Stone Age Sites - Howiesons Poort and Still Bay and Related Sites
Middle Stone Age archaeological sites in southern Africa are teaching us considerable amounts of information about the development of early modern human behaviors.

Mumba Rockshelter (Tanzania)
The Mumba Rockshelter (or Mumba-Hohle) is a Middle Paleolithic and Late Stone Age site located in the Rift Valley of Tanzania, near the shore of Lake Eyasi.

Dynastic Rulers of Palenque - Maya King List
Known rulers of the Maya civilization city of Palenque, Chiapas, Mexico

What Is Horticulture?
The archaeological use of the term horticulture is used to describe a subsistence strategy between hunting and gathering and full fledged agriculture.

Salt Production History and Uses of Salt
Making salt was one of the early inventions of humans, used to preserve a range of foods, leather and even human bodies.

Destruction of the Bamiyan Statues - Taliban vs Buddha
In March 2001, six months before the September 11th bombing of the World Trade Center in New York City, the Taliban destroyed two ancient statues of the Buddha in an attempt to cleanse the country of Afghanistan of what they perceived as Hindu heresy.

Chalchiuhtlicue, the Aztec Goddess of Water
Chalchiuhtlicue was the Aztec goddess of running water as well as the patron of navigation and childbirth

What is the Mousterian Method?
The Mousterian industry is an ancient Middle Stone Age method of making stone tools, associated with our hominid relatives the Neanderthals in Europe and both Homo sapiens and Homo neanderthalensis in Africa.

Ancient People of the Northwest Coast
Ancient people and history of the American Northwest Coast. Learn more about ancient Northwest Coast Native Americans.

What Is Processual Archaeology?
Processual Archaeology is the study of process, that is to say, investigations of the way humans do things, and the way things decay.

Archaeology Master's Degree Program Options
Looking for a specific degree to study archaeology? Here's the place to start your search.

Indus Civilization Script and Seals Slideshow
Recent investigation of seals from the ancient Indus Civilization suggest that the glyphs represent a full, as-yet-deciphered language.

What is a Stamp Seal - Indus Civilization Scripts
Indus civilization writing is found on stamp seals, pottery, tablets, tools, and weapons. The images in this photo essay are of so-called stamp seals.

What are the Seals of the Indus Civilization Like
Indus civilization stamp seals are usually square to rectangular, about 2-3 centimeters on a side, although there are larger and smaller ones. They were carved using bronze or flint tools, and they generally include an animal representation and some glyphs.

What Does the Indus Script Represent?
So if Indus seals weren't necessarily stamps, for sending goods to another place, what are they?

Comparing Indus Script to Other Ancient Languages
What Rao and his associates did was compare the relative disorder of the Indus script to that of other languages and non languages.

Letter of Intent Tips - Graduate School Application
A letter of intent addressed to each graduate school you apply to is your opportunity to show your strengths and that you recognize your weaknesses.

Bibliographic Sources for Istanbul
Recent scholarly research on the ancient history of Istanbul, also known as Constantinople. Page 2.

Istanbul is Constantinople
Istanbul, otherwise known as Constantinople or Byzantium, has a 2500 year old history on our planet, and its stunning architecture documents the best work of the Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman empires.

Post-Processual Archaeology Definition
Post-Processual Archaeology is...

Chauvet Cave (France) History and Archaeology
Chauvet Cave is one of the oldest rock art sites in the world, dating to the Aurignacian period in France, about 30,000-32,000 years ago; although its date has been questioned recently.

Chauvet Cave Bibliography
Recent scholarly studies of the paleolithic cave art site of Chauvet, France. Page 2.

Itzamná - Mayan God of Creation, Writing and Divination
Itzamna is one of the most important ancient Maya gods. He was considered the god of creation and the inventor of writing, and divination...

What Is a Tell and How Do Ancient Cities Become Buried?
How do ancient cities become buried? Archaeologists working in modern and ancient cities face the same problems with layers and layers of occupation debris stacked up over the centuries.

Acheulean Handaxe - First & Most Long-Lived Human Tool
Acheulean handaxes are a type of stone tool made by our earliest hominid ancestors.

Site Formation Processes Definition in Archaeology
In archaeology, the term Site Formation Processes refers to the events that created an archaeological site.

Tezcatlipoca - Profile of the Aztec God of Night
Tezcatlipoca was the Aztec god of night, north direction and patron deity of Aztec kings

BCE and CE - Common Era Calendar Designations
BCE (or B.C.E.) and CE (or C.E.) definitions and proper usage examples.

Swahili Culture Guide
Swahili culture refers to a sophisticated, literate Islamic society run by traders and sultans along the eastern coast of Africa.

Pottery History - An Archaeologist Looks at Pots
The history of pottery is one of change and innovation, collaboration and competition: and the technology is at least 20,000 years old.

Viking Sites - Archaeological Ruins of the Vikings
The Vikings, also known as the Norse, were great explorers who criss-crossed Europe and settled villages between Russia and Canada.

Pottery History - An Archaeologist Looks at Pots
The history of pottery is one of change and innovation, collaboration and competition: and the technology is at least 20,000 years old.

Ancient Islam Cities
The earliest cities that belong to the Islamic civilization were built in the Year One AH, or AD 622.

Snaketown (USA)
The archaeological site of Snaketown belongs to the Hohokam culture of the American southwest, and is located on the Gila River in the Sonoran Desert of central Arizona.

Bibliography of Agriculture: Part 1. Mary J. Adair through Elisabeth Hildebrand
An extensive bibliography of agriculture in archaeology, divided into three parts. Part 1: Mary J. Adair through Elisabeth Hildebrand

Bibliography of Agriculture: Ofer Bar-Yosef through Lynn Ceci
A list of references on agricultural origins and other topics, from Ofer Bar-Yosef through Lynn Ceci. Page 2.

Bibliography of Agriculture: C. M. Christensen through Philip Drucker
A bibliography of farming in the ancient past, from C. M. Christensen through Philip Drucker. Page 3.

Bibliography of Agriculture: Mary Dunn through Gayle Fritz
References about farming and gardening in archaeology, from Mary Dunn through Gayle Fritz. Page 4.

Bibliography of Agriculture: from Hiroshi Fujiwara to Elisabeth Hildebrand
A reference list of agricultural papers from from Hiroshi Fujiwara to Elisabeth Hildebrand. Page 5.

North America Archaeology - Guide to North American Archaeology
Introduction to North America Prehistory, Places and Cultures of North America Prehistory

Remarkable Creatures - Book Review of Remarkable Creatures
Remarkable Creatures is a novel about two historical characters--women who played an important role in the birth of paleontology in the early 19th century.

Who Built the Megalithic Monuments - and Why You Should Visit Them
Megalithic monuments are huge hunks of stone that were assembled or brought together by our prehistoric ancestors for reasons of their own. Here's the latest ideas on what

Northeastern Mexico Archaeology - Prehistory of Northeast Mexico
Prehistory of Northeast Mexico, Northeastern Mexico Archaeology, Prehistory of the Northern frontier of Mesoamerica

Roquepertuse - Iron Age Celtic Shrine and Alcoholic Beverage History
Roquepertuse is an Iron Age site, with a famous cultic shrine constructed by its Celtic occupants. But it was also a bit of the history of making alcoholic beverages, a cult in and of itself.

Pont du Gard and Aqueduct of Nimes (France)
The Pont du Gard is an aqueduct built by the Romans between 40 and 60 BC, to take public water across the Gard river.

Mayan Bloodletting Ritual - Maya Blood Sacrifices
Bloodletting rituals and sacrifices were a widespread practice among the ancient people of Mesoamerica.

Woolley and the Royal Cemetery at Ur
The ancient city of Ur was excavated by C. Leonard Woolley in the 1920s and 1930s. This photo essay includes several photos taken and plans of the site drawn during Woolley's excavations, provided by the University of Pennsylvania's Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology.

Excavating Ur - Tell al-Muqayyar
The remains of Ur are buried within a tell called Tell al-Muqayyar, an artificial hill located in far southern Iraq.

Excavating the Royal Cemetery at Ur
>Woolley conducted excavations at Ur for 12 seasons, excavations paid for by the British Museum and the University of Pennsyvlania; five of those seasons (1926-1932) were concentrated on the Royal Cemetery.

Plan of the Tomb of Queen Puabi
Queen Puabi's Tomb, PG/800, measured 4.35 x 2.8 meters and was built of limestone slabs and mud brick. On a raised platform in the tomb, a skeleton of a middle aged woman lay wearing an elaborate gold, lapis lazuli and carnelian headdress.

Great Pit of Death at Ur
Although ten of the Royal Tombs at Ur contained the remains of a central or primary individual, interred with one or more additional skeletons; six of them were what Woolley called

The King's Grave at Ur
PG/789, the so-called King's Grave, was located right next to Queen Puabi's but underneath the Great Death Pit.

Aterian - Middle Stone Age Aterian
The Aterian is a distinctive stone tool industry of North Africa, dated between 90,000 and 40,000 years ago, and made by anatomically modern humans.

Pasargadae - Achmaenid Dynasty Capital of Pasargadae
Pasargadae was the ancient capital city of the Achaemenid Dynasty built by Cyrus II (also known as Cyrus the Great) in the 6th century BC.

Guitarrero Cave - Archaic Archaeological Site in Peru
Located near Yungay, Peru, Guitarrero Cave contains evidence of human occupations beginning at least 10,000 years ago, and perhaps as early as 12,500 years ago.

Field Schools and Scheduled Excavations in the Middle USA
Numerous field schools are also conducted in the American middle west and mid-south. Here's a selection.

Tiwanaku Empire Timeline and Description
The Tiwanaku Empire (also spelled Tiahuanaco) dominated portions of what is now Peru, Argentina, Chile, and Bolivia in South America for six hundred years (AD 550-950)

Vaihingen - Linearbandkeramik Site in Germany
Vaihingen is an archaeological site located on the Enz river of Germany, associated with the linearbandkeramik period between about 5300 and 5000 years BC.

Multiregional Hypothesis - Archeology and Human Ancestry
The Multiregional Hypothesis argues that our earliest hominid ancestors radiated out from Africa and Homo sapiens evolved from several different groups of Homo erectus in several places throughout the world.

Upper Paleolithic Cave Art Site Lascaux Cave
Lascaux Cave is a rockshelter in the Dordogne Valley of France with fabulous cave paintings, dated to between 15,000 and 17,000 years ago. Sadly, it is no longer open to the public.

Skhul Cave - Middle Paleolithic Site of Skhul Cave
Skhul Cave is an important Neanderthal site located on Mount Carmel is modern-day ISrael.

The History and Origin of Shoes & Footwear
Shoes are the use of typically organic materials (cloth, plant matter, wood, leather) to protect our feet, and they were likely invented some 40,000 years ago.

A Collection of Anthropology Definitions
Anthropology is the study of human beings; their culture, their behavior, their beliefs, their ways of surviving; but that's just my opinion. Here is a collection of other definitions.

Arctic Small Tool Tradition - The Introduction of Bow and Arrow in North America
Arctic Small Tool Tradition, Introduction of Bow and Arrow in the Arctic, Intoduction of Bow and Arrow in North America, refer to this page to learn more about Arctic Prehistory

Ancient Hunting - Types of Ancient Hunting
Hunting is one of the earliest methods we humans learned to feed ourselves; and here you'll find descriptions of many technologies and adaptations were used over the millennia and different parts of the world.

Top 10 Archaeological Sites in Mexico
What to visit in Mexico, archaeological sites in Mexico

Defining Archaeology and Allied Disciplines
What is the difference between anthropology and archaeology? What's paleontology and what's paleoanthropology? What do the scientists think they are?

Mesolithic Sites in Europe - European Mesolithic Sites
The Mesolithic period was a time of change, when hunter-gatherers began to exploit fish and other localized resources. Here is a listing of Mesolithic sites in Europe

Destination Little Bighorn Battlefield
The Battle of Little Bighorn was the site of the first intensive battlefield archaeology studies, conducted between 1985 and 1989, by Richard Fox, Douglas Scott and Melissa Connor who investigated the dry hills of southeastern Montana for cartridge cases, bullets, army equipment, clothing fragments and skeletal remains: all that was left of George Armstrong Custer and his doomed 7th calvary.

Bibliography of the Archaeology of the Swahili Coast
A list of books and articles about the medieval culture of the eastern coast of Africa called the Swahili Coast.

Toumai - Type site of Sahelanthropus tchadensis
Toumai is the nickname of Sahelanthropus tchadensis, a hominoid and possible ancestor of the human race from 7 million years ago.

Kharaneh IV - EpiPaleolithic site in the Azraq Basin of Jordan
Kharaneh IV is an epipaleolithic site located in the Azraq Basin of Jordan, with archaeological evidence for some of the earliest structures in the region.

Jerf el Ahmar - Prepottery Neolithic A Village in Syria
Jerf el Ahmar is a prepottery Neolithic site located on the Euphrates River of North Central Syria. Located near several other important PPN a sites, Jerf el Ahmar has evidence of early use of wild barley.

Silk Road - The Archaeology and History of the Silk Road
The Silk Road (or Silk Route) is the name given to a network of trade routes crossing Asia, first reported to have been used during the Han Dynasty [206 BC-220 AD] in China

Coba - Lowland Maya Center
Cob is the name of a large lowland Maya city located between two large lakes in east central Quintana Roo, Mexico.

Nabta Playa - Early Evidence of Cattle Domestication
Nabta Playa is an archaeological site in the western deserts of southern Egypt, where some of the earliest known evidence of domesticated cattle have been identified.

Pastoralism is the name given to the way of life in which people herd animals.

Windover Bog Site - Archaic Pond Cemetery
At the Early Middle Archaic Windover Bog site, a pond cemetery on Florida's Atlantic coast near Cape Canaveral, site conditions have preserved a wealth of information about the use of fiber seven to eight thousand years ago.

Picol Passo and the Art of Maiolica
Cipriano Picol Passo was a medieval potter who wrote three books on the potter's art, describing the methods and techniques of maiolica pottery.

Khotan - Ancient City on the Silk Road
Khotan in the Xingjiang Uygur Autonomous Region of China, , anciently known as Yutien was an important stop on the Silk Road.

Belitung Shipwreck - Tang Dynasty International Trade
The Belitung shipwreck is a 9th century Arab or Indian vessel wrecked off the coast of Belitung Island in Indonesia, carrying a cargo of Chinese Tang Dynasty ceramics.

Ancient Computer - Recent Investigations of the Antikythera Mechanism
The 2012 video from PBS called Ancient Computer describes the results of the recent studies of the Antikythera Mechanism, a 2100 year old astronomical computing mechanism perhaps developed by Archimedes

Ultimate Tut - Secrets of the Dead
The 2013 video from PBS's Secrets of the Dead series answers many of the questions surrounding the tomb of the most famous pharaoh, Tutankhamun

The Human Family Tree - A DVD Review
The Human Family Tree is a 90 minute long video in DVD format,

Floods, Famine, and Emperors
Archaeologist Brian Fagan proposes what most archaeologists will recognize as an old chestnut: climate change is seen as a--if not the--major determinant of cultural change. This revolutionary book points to the enormous amount of data being gathered on the climatic phenomena known collectively as ENSO--the El Nio Southern Oscillation.

Secrets of the Dead: Caveman Cold Case - Video Review
The episode of Secrets of the Dead called Caveman Cold Case is an excellent discussion of two Neanderthal cave sites and what archaeologists have learned about our not-so-distant cousins.

Monte Alban - Building J
Building J is probably the most famous construction of Monte Albán. . Page 7.

Locomotion and Ardipithecus
Although at 4.4 million years old, the Ardipithecus ramidus is not old enough to be the common chimpanzee/human ancestor—but its body shape and stature is substantially different from its perceived descendant, Australopithecus. Page 8.

Copper History
Copper is a beautiful element when it has been worked, a truism known to our human ancestors at least as long as 9,300 years ago.

Saar - Village of the Dilmun Culture on Bahrain
Saar is the name of a village belonging to the early Dilmun culture, where excavations in the 1990s have given us a glimpse of lifeways of Dilmun.

Azilian Culture - The Federmesser Transition from Upper Paleolithic to Mesolithic
The Azilian culture, also known as Federmesser, is the name given to the cultures that suffered through the climatic transition in Europe from steppe tundra to woodland.

Khmer Road System - Angkor Wat's Transportation Corridors
The Khmer Empire, also known as the Angkor Civilization, built an extensive road system to move economically important goods around its vast country.