Integrative Approaches in Ceramic Petrography
Publication Year: 2016
Ceramic petrography, a microscopic examination of the mineral content and structure within ceramic thin sections, reveals the origin and movement of pottery and sheds light on the technology of the artifact. Practiced by archaeologists since the 1930s, ceramic petrography was less commonly practiced until recently. Integrative Approaches in Ceramic Petrography highlights new results from this field and incorporates it prominently within current archaeological work.
Thirteen papers cover a broad spectrum of regional and temporal contexts with case studies that provide practical examples combining petrography with scientific, ethnographic, and experimental methods. The varied uses of ceramic petrography and the insights it has generated, illustrate the significance of this method for understanding past societies and the volume’s conclusion provides an astute overview of the field.
Published by: University of Utah Press
Title Page, Copyright
List of Figures
List of Tables
Mary F. Ownby, Isabelle C. Druc, and Maria A. Masucci
Petrographic analysis of ceramics has contributed greatly over many decades to archaeological research addressing topics on ceramic production, technology, and exchange that relate to larger issues of population movement, social change, identity, and cultural interaction. One of...
1. Petrography First: Issues of Identification and Sourcing Volcanic Ash Temper in Maya Pottery
Anabel Ford, Frank J. Spera, and Connie Christensen
Archaeological study of ceramics in the Maya area (fig. 1.1) has traditionally focused on surface characteristics and general aspects of shape that provide the basis for chronological assessments. The assumptions have been that style and manufacture are local and change can be traced...
2. The Importance of Petrography for Interpreting Compositional Data: A Case Study of Tanque Verde Red-on-Brown
Mary F. Ownby
Petrography has contributed to archaeological research since the 1930s, but its popularity waned in the 1970s with the development of chemical techniques such as neutron activation analysis (NAA), inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) and laser-ablation...
3. The Organization of Ceramic Production and the Origins of Complexity in the Late Prehispanic Coastal Societies of Ecuador
Maria A. Masucci, Hector Neff, Michael D. Glascock, and Jeff Speakman
Ethnohistoric accounts place the coastal plain regions of Ecuador as part of the territories of a set of related groups that included the Manteños or Paches along the central coast and the Guancavilcas to the south, although ethnohistorians and colonial accounts disagree on the boundaries...
4. Petrography and pXRF at San Pedro de Atacama, Northern Chile: Exploring Ancient Ceramic Production
Emily M. Stovel, Beatriz Cremonte, and Ester Echenique
Here we review two recent attempts to broaden our understanding of ancient San Pedro life through archaeometric studies of household and burial ceramic remains. We juxtapose recent petrographic studies of local ceramics with an ongoing effort to characterize local ceramics using...
5. Technical Comparisons of Halaf and Ubaid Sherds from Tell Ziyadeh: A Pilot Study
This chapter presents a pilot project focused on the Halaf and Ubaid period sherds excavated at Tell Ziyadeh, a site located in the Khabur River basin of northern Syria, in order to achieve a better understanding of the prehistoric pottery from Tell Ziyadeh for an upcoming larger project...
6. Petrography in the Age of Instrumental Characterization: An Example from Honey Bee Village, Pima County, Arizona
James M. Heidke
Anna Shepard’s insights regarding the necessity of characterizing the temper in larger lots of sherds than it is practical to analyze petrographically often seem to have been lost on the discipline, especially since the advent of instrumental characterization studies. Shepard repeatedly...
7. The Contribution of Petrography to Understanding the Production and Consumption of Early Helladic Ceramics from Nemea, Mainland Greece
Clare Burke, Peter M. Day, and Daniel J. Pullen
The Aegean Early Bronze Age (EBA ca. 3100–2100 BC) has been a focus of scholarly attention as the prelude to the early state organizations of the Middle and Late Bronze Ages (ca. 2000–1600 BC and 1600–1000 BC). A key aspect of this research has been to account for the emergence...
8. The Use of Loess in Pottery Manufacture: A Comparative Analysis of Pottery from Yinxu in North China and Linearbandkeramik Sites in Belgium
James B. Stoltman
This chapter focuses upon the use of loess in the manufacture of prehistoric pottery. Loess is “windblown dust,” composed predominantly of silt-size particles of quartz, “that covers wide areas in northern Europe, eastern China and the Mississippi Valley” (Bates and Jackson 1984:301)...
9. Clay Pellets in Hohokam Red-on- Buff Pottery: Shifts in Pottery Recipes and the Organization of Ceramic Production
Sophia E. Kelly
The Hohokam economy developed on a social and environmental landscape characterized by large, stable population centers and subsistence intensification in a desert ecosystem. The cultural developments in the Hohokam region are rooted in the tradition of deep sedentism in central...
10. Looking for the Right Outcrop: Ceramic Petrography in the Peruvian Andes
Isabelle C. Druc, Kinya Inokuchi, Victor Carlotto, and Pedro Navarro
In 2010 a series of compositional analysis was initiated to study the production and provenance of the ceramics found at the archaeological site of Kuntur Wasi, in the department of Cajamarca, Peru. Kuntur Wasi is a ceremonial site of the Formative Period occupied during most of the first...
11. Petrography and Behavior When the Minerals Do Not Change: Textural Analysis of Disaster Impacts on Historic Hidatsa Potting Practices, North Dakota
Kacy L. Hollenback
In archaeology, petrography is used to address questions of provenance and technology (Orton et al. 1993:133; Rice 1987:372–382). This study focuses on technology and asks: “What can analyses of temper tell us about human behavior?” By combining petrographic techniques...
12. Field-Based Experiments Replicating Ceramic Fabrics: Late Bronze Age Cookwares from Two Mediterranean Sites
Jerolyn E. Morrison and Mara T. Horowitz
Experiments designed to replicate ancient ceramic fabrics are valuable for testing hypotheses about the relationships between locally available potting materials (such as clay and temper) and the ancient production of ceramics (Moody et al. 2012:121, 122). The method employed in this...
13. Point/Counter Point II: The Accuracy and Feasibility of Digital Image Techniques in the Analysis of Pottery Tempers Using Sherd Edges
Patrick C. Livingood and Ann S. Cordell
Digital imaging analysis has been proposed as an efficient alternative to traditional petrography for some applications (Daniels and Lipo 2008; Gonzalez and Woods 2007; Hansen 2000; Livingood 2007, 2010; Russ 2006; Velde and Druc 1998; Whitbread 1991; see Reedy 2006 for a review...
14. Ceramic Petrography: Integration, Adaptation, and Innovation
Ian K. Whitbread
Ceramic petrography plays a pivotal role in technological and provenance studies of archaeological ceramics. It bridges fieldwork and laboratory contexts, from hand specimen examination with a hand lens or stereomicroscope to thin-section analysis using a polarizing microscope...
List of Contributors
Page Count: 288
Illustrations: 77 illustrations, 19 maps
Publication Year: 2016
OCLC Number: 975186785
MUSE Marc Record: Download for Integrative Approaches in Ceramic Petrography