Ways dating artifacts

24 Dec

There are two main categories of dating methods in archaeology: indirect or relative dating and absolute dating.

Relative dating includes methods that rely on the analysis of comparative data or the context (eg, geological, regional, cultural) in which the object one wishes to date is found.

Stratigraphic dating remains very reliable when it comes to dating objects or events in undisturbed stratigraphic levels.

For example, the oldest human remains known to date in Canada, found at Gore Creek, have been dated using soil stratification.

This approach helps to order events chronologically but it does not provide the absolute age of an object expressed in years.

Generally, each stratum is isolated in a separate chronological unit that incorporates artifacts.

An initial reading dates the specimen which is then calibrated by considering this date and its correspondence with the measurable level of carbon 14 stored over time in the growth rings of certain tree species, including redwood and pine bristol.

The results of radiocarbon dating are expressed in years and include a time range (eg, 630± 60 BP).

Typology Typology is a method that compares reference objects in order to classify them according to their similarity or dissimilarity and link them to a specific context or period.

This technique is frequently used when it is impossible to make use of absolute dating methods; it generally allows archaeologists to identify the period to which a cultural site or object belongs, without specifying the date of occupation.