Practices of Archaeological Stratigraphy brings together a number of examples which illustrate the development and use of the Harris Matrix in describing and interpreting archaeological sites. This matrix, the theory of which is described in two editions of the previous book by Harris, Principles of Archaeological Stratigaphy, made possible for the first time a simple diagramatic representation of the strategraphic sequence of a site, no matter how complex. The Harris Matrix, by showing in one diagram all three linear dimensions, plus time, represents a quantum leap over the older methods which relied on sample sections only.
In this book 17 essays present a sample of new work demonstrating the strengths and uses of the Harris Matrix, the first ever published collection of papers devoted solely to stratigraphy in archaeology. The crucial relationships between the Harris methods, open-area excavation techniques, the interpretation of interfaces, and the use of single-context plans and recording sheets, is clarified by reference to specific sites. These sites range from medieval Europe, through Mayan civilizations to Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia.
This book will be of great value to all those involved in excavating and recording archaeological sites and should help to ensure that the maximum amount of stratigraphic information can be gathered from future investigations.
* Presents case studies which illuminate the Harris matrix method, invented by Edward C. Harris
* Senior editor is the inventor of this method and principle in the field
* Serves as a companion volume to Harris's Principles of Archaeological Stratigraphy
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