Uncovering the past: A History of Archaeology

Uncovering the past: A History of Archaeology

by William H. Stiebing, William Steibing
     
 

Uncovering the Past is an absorbing history of archaeology that traces the study of ancient material culture from its beginnings as a hobby for Renaissance scholars to the sophisticated modern discipline we know today. Professor William Stiebing devotes the first part of his chronicle to the exploits of the colorful, dynamic excavators of archaeology's "Heroic Age.

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Overview

Uncovering the Past is an absorbing history of archaeology that traces the study of ancient material culture from its beginnings as a hobby for Renaissance scholars to the sophisticated modern discipline we know today. Professor William Stiebing devotes the first part of his chronicle to the exploits of the colorful, dynamic excavators of archaeology's "Heroic Age." One may wonder whether the adventures of Indiana Jones are really far-fetched after reading Steibing's account of Giovanni Belzoni's removal of the seven-ton colossus of Ramesses II, which was dragged by wooden platform and transported by boat from Egypt to London; or of clergyman John Peters' skirmish with Arab tribesmen, who surrounded his excavation site and finally pillaged and burned his camp; or of Heinrich Schliemann's quest to prove the authenticity of Homer's Iliad by searching for ancient Troy in Turkey.

The second part of the book shifts the focus to modern archaeology, describing how new methodologies and techniques such as area surveys, statistics, carbon-14 dating, and computer visualization are turning the former pastime of dillettnates into a rigorous science.

Uncovering the Past is an excellent introduction to archaeology, both for those who enjoy its romance and those who seek an accurate survey of its history and current status.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780879757649
Publisher:
Prometheus Books
Publication date:
01/28/1993
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
315
Product dimensions:
5.70(w) x 8.41(h) x 0.87(d)
Lexile:
1270L (what's this?)

Meet the Author

Table of Contents

Maps11
Figures13
Preface19
Introduction21
Pt. IArchaeology's "Heroic Age"27
Phase I - Exploration, Antiquarianism and Early Excavation (circa 1450-1860)
Phase II - Archaeology Comes of Age (circa 1860-1925)
1The Discovery of Prehistory29
IThe Six-Thousand-Year History of the Earth29
IIRecognition of Ice Age Art49
2Retrieving Egypt's Distant Past55
IThe Dawn of Egyptology55
IIEnding the Plundering75
3The Rediscovery of Near Eastern Civilizations85
IEarly Explorers in the Near East85
IIThe Discovery of the Sumerians, the Flood, and the Hittites109
4The Growth of Aegean Archaeology119
IRevival of Interest in Greek Monuments119
IISchliemann Discovers Aegean Prehistory124
5Recovering the Remains of Ancient Italy143
IThe Gradual Destruction of Ancient Rome143
IICareful Excavation Begins in Italy159
6Unearthing the New World's Past167
IDiscovery and Destruction of New World Civilizations167
IIThe Coming of Order and Stratigraphic Excavation: North America193
7Archaeology in the Far East and Sub-Saharan Africa199
IThe Wonders of the Ancient East199
IIFar Eastern Archaeology Becomes More Systematic213
8Reclaiming Sunken History227
IThe Dawn of Underwater Exploration227
IIThe Resurrection of the Vasa239
Pt. IIModern Archaeology249
9Phase III: Systematizing and Organizing the Past (1925-1960)251
10Phase IV: Toward a Scientific Archaeology (1960-Present)265
Appendix: Major Events and Discoveries in the History of Archaeology281
Recommended Reading289
Index301

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