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82 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back


study of past animals and plants


study of past civilizations and peoples

Louis and Mary Leakey

pioneered study of human evolution in Africa, discovered Australopithecus africanus and robustus

Gona stone tools

2.4 MA


Earliest instance of Acheulean tools is...?


oldest bone arrowhead

circa 61ka

Sibudu, SA

British occupation


Happisburgh, Norfolk, UK

Hesiod's speculative phase (5)

golden age - humanity lived among gods

silver age - lived 100 years under dominion of mothers

bronze age - tools made of bronze, lots of war

heroic age - Troy pirate raids

iron age - misery and sorrow, then-present day


first archaeologist

dug beneath temples to improve and learn about current/past culture

curiosity cabinets

Renaissance-Victorian personal collections of ancient artifacts

William Stukeley

demonstrated that great stone tombs in Northern Europe manmade before Romans

first excavations

Pompeii & Herculaneum

excellently preserved, 79 AD

Johann Winckelmann

father of classical archaeology

published Pompeii discoveries

Heinrich Schliemann

excavations at Troy and Mycenae

archaeological testing of Homer's Iliad and Virgil's Aeneid

found the mask of Agamemnon or whatnot

processual archaeology

archaeology should be explaining, not simply describing. conclusions must be tested and explanations must be based on explicit logical framework.

culture is system divided into subsystems


first step of processual archaeology

functional or ecological explanation


second step of processual archaeology

symbolic or cognitive aspects

differences between processual and traditional archaeology (7)

1) explanatory vs descriptive

2) culture process vs culture history

3) deductive vs inductive reasoning

4) testing vs authority

5) project design vs data accumulation

6) quantitative vs qualitative

7) optimistic vs pessimistic scope

Timescale for Lomekwi, Gona, and Oldowan

Lomekwi = 3.3ma

Gona = 2.6ma

Oldowan = 1.8ma

Aust. afarensis

discovered by Donald Johansson


Hadar, Ethiopia


robust clade

dietary specialization


Early Homo


small bodies, big brains

habilis or rudolfensis


homo erectus


that old guy without the teeth and severe arthritis - showcases compassion and care within a group

findings at Lomekwi

-cores often used for different things before flakes removed

-1m thick bed, many of the artifacts found rather vertically on slope. isn't it near a lake bed?

-Kenyanthropus found nearby - could it have made these tools?

-very large stone tools, larger than any other, new category of stone tools

single specimen on which whole species is named/branded


helps define what scientific name of taxon actually represents, but is not holotype

visibility threshold

does the earliest record of stone tools symbolize the origin of culture? what about the pieces that have decayed?

timeline of tools & culture

lomekwi - 3.3ma

gona - 2.6ma

oldowan - 1.8ma

controlled use of fire - 780ka (GBY)

hunting - 400ka (Schoeningen)

refitting sets

oldowan technology - able to fit flakes into original core

cultural sequences (5)

-stone, bronze, iron age

-paleolithic and neolithic

-lower middle upper vs early middle late

-regional variation and function

-time transgressive character

Naama Goren-Inbar

lead researcher for GBY

found wood, fruit seeds, pollen




pressure flaking, higher skill

hafting, spears

greater cutting edge per weight of material


bone, ivory, antler, stone

made by retouching blades, including scrapers and burins

Chauvet cave - oldest cave art

oldest portable art and musical instruments



mix of Mousterian and Aurignacian



Venus figurines

clay lion heads

backed bladelets

spread of Venus figurines could be spreading of cult of fertility

covered bodies with large bones - no predation



leaf points treated with heat

drive hunting? horses found at bottom of cliff in heaps, perhaps.

shoulder points, willow leaf points



harpoons, bone points

Lascaux cave

jewelry, sculpture, very cool cave art

beads, tubes, borers, beveled bases

Cro Magnon

~30ka on in SW France

modern specimens w/ robust features

supraorbital notch and supracillary arch, glabellar swelling

Aurignacian context

typically right on top of Mousterian/Neanderthal tools, no indication that they ever made contact

Chatelperronian questionability

Is the Chatelperronian a jumble of evidence or bad excavation?

Last glacial maximum


settling of glacial and periglacial land

What do rings of large bones mean?

foundation for houses in Upper Paleolithic

imply sedentary lifestyle for at least part of year

UP & religion

UP provides oldest evidence for religion and ideology - art and graves


12-8 kbp

greater sedentism, larger populations, specialized technology

Starr Carr

found bone pins, barbed harpoons, deer headdresses


study of human remains in archaeology


process of identifying an individual

sex, age, height, physical attributes, relationships


found in Gran Dolina, Atapuerca, Spain

ambiguous & debated


can determine what people had based on skeletons left behind

skeletal evidence of disease and trauma, DNA evidence from bacteria, parasites, and viruses, malnutrition and palaeodemographics from large sample sizes


geographic spread of ideas

migration and diffusion are causes of change

assumes that cultures represent ethnic units

Great Zimbabwe

monument in southeastern Zimbabwe

migrationists said it couldn't have been built by any African, must have been a Portuguese

Marxist archaeology

focuses on clashing interests, struggles between classes, and poor exploitation by elite

evolutionary, materialistic, holistic

changes are result of contradictions and antagonisms within society

evolutionary archaeology

human behavior consequence of evo

adaptive features of behaviors and practices in ecological way

optimal foraging theory

intake the most energy while using the least


self-replicating cultural units

post-processual archaeology

focus on individual, symbolic, and ideological aspects of past societies

material culture we study is product of individual's thoughts and actions

structuralist archaeology

human activities guided by underlying architecture of our minds


portable objects made by humans


non-portable artifacts


locations where artifacts and features are found


archaeological layer


location within context


relationship with other artifacts

primary v secondary context

primary = site has not been disturbed since original deposition

secondary = opposite, duh


solar or lunar based


ex: Victorian era


assemblages or artifacts from numerous sites are placed in chronological order

relative dating

something is older or younger than something else

numerical (absolute) dating

# years BP which something occurred

Nicholas Steno

"father of stratigraphy"

superposition, horizontality, lateral continuity

principle of superposition

layers of rock arranged in time sequence, oldest on bottom and youngest on top

principle of original horizontality

rock layers form in horizontal position, any deviation from this position are due to rocks being disturbed later

principle of lateral continuity

rock layers deposited in laterally continuous fashion, within confines of basin. Subsequent erosion may disrupt continuity

principle of cross-cutting relationships

truncations of rock layers must post-date layers that are cut

William Smith

Principle of faunal succession

strata identified by fossils


before Christ, anno domini


before common era & common era


before present = before 1950

half-life of carbon-14

t=5760 years

calibration of radiocarbon dates

radiocarbon info has to be translated into years because it's really hard to tell someone not in science what having 3/4 of the original sample means


deposit of volcanic ash

half life of potassium-40


geomagnetic polarity time scale

measuring how old something is by how many times it's switched between poles