Friday, 5 September 2014

Internet Archaeology

Internet Archaeology logo
The premier online archaeological journal has returned to its original open access policy. Internet Archaeology provides monographs and data papers under a Creative Commons 3.0 license.

This move has been met with considerable enthusiasm and Doug's Archaeology blog has celebrated the event by posting a number of apocryphal good reviews about the occasion.

For me, Dungworth, D. (1997). Iron Age and Roman copper alloys from northern Britain. Internet Archaeology, (2). Council for British Archaeology. doi:10.11141/ia.2.2 is the monograph that captured  most of my interest, and I am looking forward to studying it in depth over the weekend. So much of early Celtic art lacks XRF and other methods of metallurgical analysis, and distribution patterns are very difficult to detect in much of the material as while ordinary brooches often stayed enough within their original manufacturing area to detect their origin, "high status" objects with considerable decoration often strayed far from their original workshops.

Having such analyses done professionally can be expensive but some labs allow their staff to do such at little or no cost to members of the public for educational and non-profit projects. Also, scholars at universities often have a harder time obtaining samples for their intended projects than they do obtaining the means to use them. I highly recommend that collectors and metal detectorists take advantage of both open access material and the availability of scientific testing to create more studies, For example, the effect of agricultural practices on archaeological remains is neglected more than, say, the effects of agriculture on modern underground copper piping. As so many people seem to have a hard time extrapolating, nuanced studies are clearly needed.

In the meantime, enjoy the Internet Archaeology monographs and data papers. I'll see you on Monday.

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