Publication

A dual geochemical-phytolith methodology for studying activity areas in ephemeral sites: Insights from an ethnographic case study from Jordan

Vos, D., Jenkins, E. & Palmer, C., 2018, In : Geoarchaeology. 33, 6, p. 680-694 15 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

This study aims to contribute to the interpretation of ephemeral sites by exploring the efficacy of geochemistry and phytolith analysis to identify activity areas in seasonally occupied ethnographic sites. The application of a portable X-ray fluorescence (XRF) instrument and phytolith analysis to soil samples from six Bedouin campsites at Wadi Faynan, Jordan, provided insights about anthropogenic enrichment patterns and the effects of short periods of abandonment on these. The compatibility of the two analysis techniques and means to combine the results of both are addressed. The results of this study suggest that soil signatures can be found in ephemeral sites following abandonment, even in dynamic and harsh environments. The efficacy of the geochemical analysis to indicate variance within the data was found to be greater than that of the phytolith analysis in these case studies, while certain trends within the phytolith results were more useful in identifying specific activities. Due to the compatibility of the geochemical and phytolith data, it is proposed that a serial or parallel approach should be taken for their statistical analysis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)680-694
Number of pages15
JournalGeoarchaeology
Volume33
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Externally publishedYes

    Keywords

  • bedouin, ethnoarchaeology, ephemeral, geochemistry, phytoliths, CHEMICAL-ANALYSIS, SOUTHERN JORDAN, BEDOUIN TENT, HOUSE FLOORS, GUATEMALA, SEDIMENTS, ANCIENT, SPACE, GEOARCHAEOLOGY, ORGANIZATION

ID: 94189186