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Lecture Notes Oct. 13 2011

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Bonnie Glencross

Stratigraphy • Archaeological strata refer to the accumulation of natural and cultural debris in successive layers. • Laws of Stratigraphy:  Superposition: the deeper the layer = the older the layer  Original horizontality: disturbances in the layers. Layers are still consecutive, but take a different shape due to possible geological processes  Lateral continuity: a dip in the top layers.  Cross-cutting: a hole that has been dug into the bottom layers from the top layers, meaning that newer materials can be found lower than older ones. Could be caused by natural processes such as erosion, or man-made such as a hole being dug deep into the ground by people. • Unconformities represent periods of time where erosion or no deposition occurred. • To confirm stones or bones from a particular strata are contemporaneous, effects are made to reassemble/refit or to see if the individual pieces can be conjoined. • The Harris Matrix relationships:  No direct stratigraphic connection  Superposition  Original continuity Approaches to Excavation • Archaeological resources are non-renewable • Permits and permission:  Ontario Heritage Act: It is illegal for anyone but a licensed archaeologist to knowingly disturb an archaeological site.  Cemeteries Act: Prohibits disturbance of burial sites. Those who have knowledge of a burial site must contact
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