Archaeological Excavation by J. P. Droop

By J. P. Droop

J. P. suspend (1882-1963) was once a classical box archaeologist. After graduating from Trinity university, Cambridge, in 1904 he labored as a box archaeologist for the British college at Athens, and used to be appointed Chair of Classical Archaeology at Liverpool collage in 1914. This quantity was once meant as a consultant to functional archaeological excavation and was once first released in 1915 as a part of the Cambridge Archaeological and Ethnological sequence. on the time of booklet, archaeology used to be commencing to develop into a extra medical and educational self-discipline, as could be noticeable in Droop's arguments at the value of archaeological context and information of stratification on web site. the improvement of excavation as a scientifically established perform is proven through the emphasis on making plans of the positioning, not like previous courses to excavation. This quantity presents insights into the advance of the speculation in addition to the perform of archaeology.

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One particularly bitter disappointment we met with there, on visiting a site known to us as having been partially worked a few years before. The undug portion was fairly extensive and looked very hopeful with traces of walls appearing and with prehistoric island pottery lying thickly over a good area, but our hopes were dashed by the discovery of one of those round spaces where the Greeks of to-day use the ox, unscripturally muzzled, to tread out their corn; often these floors are paved, but this one was cut down to the living rock only six inches below the surface.

II] PARTICULAR F. 31 Site-choosing. " The truth of the matter is that there is not very much to say about the catching of the hare. " Would, indeed, that there were a "dowsing" rod that we could use, but the choosing of a site is chiefly guesswork, yet always guess-work guided by signs and tokens, ancient worked blocks, portions of old wall, or the like. The surest indication of ancient habitation is the presence of ancient potsherds, which being both characteristic of their period and indestructible make the most descriptive of labels; intrinsically, too, they are as valueless as the stones on the hillside, so that they are not likely to have been moved except possibly downhill by the forces of denudation, and in Greece if none are to be found the spot is probably not worth consideration.

A circle is drawn from the pole as centre with the then length of shadow as radius. A watch is kept, and when in the afternoon the shadow lengthens again to touch the circle, that is to just the same length, the point at which it does so is marked by another peg. A line is drawn from each peg to the pole, and the line that bisects the resulting angle1 points due North and South. For ordinary excavation work there is not much need for a theodolite and at the present time I confess that I have forgotten how to use one.

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