What is Fieldwalking?
Fieldwalking is the term given to the activity of looking for artefacts on the surface of a field or a specific area. It is mostly undertaken in ploughed fields, where some artefacts have been brought to the surface through ploughing. Teams of people work together to cover as much ground as they can.
Fieldwalking can be undertaken in two different ways – either by the transect or grid method.
Transect walking is where a team line up spaced between 15, 20 or 30 m apart and walk the whole length of the field, they then move across and walk back, still evenly spaced, looking for artefacts as they go.
Grid walking is where a field has been marked out with squares of either 5 meters, or 20 meter. In each square there is one person who will walk across the square covering the whole area. This is a more intense form of fieldwalking as it ensures that each area is thoroughly searched.
Once an artefact has been found it is marked, usually with a small flag, to show where it is. When all of the fieldwalking has been completed the artefact locations are recorded by a GPS system and then uploaded onto a map. This shows where the artefacts are located.
The location of artefacts in a field is very important as it shows their distribution. If there are a large number of artefacts in one small area then there is a large possibility that there are further artefacts buried under the ground, and this area would be considered for possible excavation.
Archaeology Wow!! – The Pilate Stone
The Pilate Stone is a carved limestone block with inscriptions.
It was discovered in 1961 at the old Roman city of Caesarea Martima, Israel, by Antonio Frova, and measures 82 cm high and is 65 cm wide. There are four lines of inscription upon the stone, which would have once been placed at the front of a building in the city.
What makes the Pilate Stone so special is the translation of the inscription. It is archaeological evidence that Pontius Pilate was the Prefect of Judea at the time of Jesus.
There are two interpretations as to what the whole inscription was,
1) Pontius Pilate, Prefect of Judea, has given this Tiberieum to the citizens of Caesarea.
2) Pontius Pilate, Prefect of Judea, has made this Tiberieum and dedicated it to the Augustan Gods.
Which ever one it is, it’s importance is significant to Christians around the world, that part of the Bible can be proved as fact.
The Pilate Stone can be viewed at the Israel Museum.
Archaeological Site Guide – The Qal’at al-Bahrain, also known as the Bahrain Fort or Fort of Bahrain
Qal’at al-Bahrain is an archaeological site discovered in 1954 and located on the island of Bahrain, in the Arabian Gulf.
The site was designated in 2005 as a World Heritage Site due to its cultural and historical importance.
The site covers a little over 16 hectares and is an artificial mound 12 m high and comprising of 7 layers. It dates back to 2300 BC and has been inhabited by the Kassites, the Portuguese and the Persians.
In 1400 BC a wall was built enclosing what had been a few clustered buildings. It was once the capital of the Dilmun civilization and an ancient harbour. The situation of the site meant that it became a center for exchange between the Chinese and those living in the Mediterranean. It was also an important political center.
The present fort dates from around the 6th century and has some unique architecture, like in the image above. In folklore it is believed to have been a meeting place of the Gods and the ancestral home of the Sumerians.
Finds at the site include, pots, vessels, copper items, spearheads, fishing equipment, molds, crucibles and seals. To date only 25% of the site has been excavated – so there is still a lot of work to do!!
Great Books to Read…….
Great Web Pages to Look At…….