Scale is one of the most critical values used in archaeological analysis and greatly affects what data are collected for a study (click here for additional information on scale (Links to an external site.)?Links to an external site.?). Three scalar values used in archaeology are the microscale (e.g. artifact deposits), the mesoscale (e.g. a site), and the macroscale (e.g. a region). Consider the role of scale in archaeological investigations and demonstrate its effect by providing examples of materials or things that can be researched at each level. How does scale influence the research and analysis of human civilizations? Use evidence and examples from the lectures or videos in your writing. When wrapping up this section, be sure to smoothly transition to the next topic.
In the research work, the archaeologist often needs to have a characterization of the studied area, in which one or another archaeological monument is located. After all, the placement of many monuments is subject to a certain topographic regularity. For monuments occupying a large territory, it is important to know the topographical features of its individual parts, the location of ravines, cliffs, streams, wells, fords, etc.
To identify these features and generalize the information available, they usually go to the studied area. Depending on the task, the exploration can be regional (at the macroscale level), local (at the mesoscale level) or monuments’ (at the microscale level). The regional exploration covering vast territories is used for initial general acquaintance with the region or region being studied, as well as for solving common, broad archaeological tasks (Carver, 2013). The exploration by area is necessary for a continuous survey of the area. It is especially important when studying the choirs of ancient cities with densely located settlements and a system of allotments. The study of sites (local exploration) gives tangible results only when exploring areas: the entire study area is divided into separate sections, each of which is surveyed by intersecting routes, preferably repeated. For the local exploration, it is necessary to have a good topographic basis, on which individual monuments and monuments systems are applied with the help of tools.
The monuments’ exploration is aimed at in-depth study of monuments as well as the choice of a monument for subsequent excavations. If an exploration is carried out in order to determine the numerical ratio of monuments of different categories, epochs or cultures, a special attention should be paid to ensuring that the various natural or individual microzones, where they are located are represented evenly (Carver, 2013). The monuments of this or that type may turn out to be especially numerous or, on the contrary, rare in the zone that was preferred during the archaeological exploration.
Thus, the history of a country cannot be studied without archaeological materials, monuments of material culture, unusually diverse and thanks to modern methods of research giving rich information about its history and culture. A huge number of separate categories of things (ceramics, dishes, objects of everyday life and cult, tools, statues, reliefs, frescoes, etc.) are kept in different museums around the world.
In his 2009 article Jason Ur takes what he calls a “holistic landscape approach.” Using Ur 2009, review what landscape archaeology can add to our knowledge about ancient civilizations. Why is it important to look beyond the archaeological site? What kind of information is added to the analysis and interpretation of ancient civilizations?
The preservation of the historical and cultural heritage is a vital necessity for a modern society. The study of the nature of the landscape allows not only to solve the problems of localization of historical objects and their interrelations but also to analyze the existing system, for example, the location of the population on the land surface is a set of territorial systems of different rank interconnected. The archaeological landscape is understood as the territory of ancient nature management, where archaeological finds and archeological monuments meet with a certain frequency and regularity (Ur, 2009). The scientific value is represented not only by the location of the artifacts (monuments of archeology) but also by the entire territorial complex, and, accordingly, the landscape acquired the quality of the archaeological site and archaeological heritage. Thus, the holistic landscape approach, taking into account archaeological artifacts, allowed the development of methods for reconstructing landscapes from the Neolithic to the Middle Ages, revealing anthropogenic changes in landscapes leading to a change in the landscapes themselves, the causes of the origin, and the history of the development of the settlement system