Archaeometry of Pre-Columbian Sites and Artifacts (Getty by David Scott, Pieter Meyers

By David Scott, Pieter Meyers

Archaeometry is the applying of clinical tools and analyses to the learn of tradition in its archaeological context. Garnered from a convention known as to review the fabric tradition from North and South the United States, the book's twenty essays on a large diversity of matters characterize the complete scope of analysis during this box. They comprise papers by way of Ron L. Bishop at the compositional research of pre-Columbian pottery from the Maya zone, Heather Lechtman at the fabrics technology of fabric tradition from the Andes, and J. Michael Elam and others on resource id and hydration courting of obsidian artifacts.

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The presence of this distinctive plate and FIGURE I la,h. Illustrations of other Palenque-like pottery at the western sites of El Retiro, Miraflores, and Las (a) wide everted-rim tripod plate, Colmenas offers a special opportunity to investigate aspects of Palenque's relation­ red-black-orange, Otolum ship to the smaller centers. A previous observation based on neutron activation data was that the western ceramic complex, Palenque; and (b) short (stubby) vertical-neck sites produced the Otolum everted-rim plate locally as well as importing it from globular jars with thickened rims, Palenque (Bishop 1 975).

What becomes clear as we continue to seek the "best fit" among our data sets is that several alternative models will need to be evaluated. 35 BISHOP Pattern Variation Among Maya Painted Pottery The formal or typological nature of the Palenque pottery discussed above had little more than infrequent modal correspondence or generalized resemblances to the pottery produced at other major Maya civic-ceremonial centers of the southern lowlands. In the core area, painted decoration gave expression to strong ceramic tra­ ditions.

Unfortunately, no generally accepted theoretical framework has yet been devel­ oped that promotes the necessary level of interdisciplinary integration. This consti­ tutes a great limitation on archaeological interpretation, for only within a theoretical context, whether explicitly or implicitly stated, are significant questions about the past distinguished from those that are less significant, where descriptive data derived from scientific measurement are transformed into a systematized body of archaeo­ logical knowledge.

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