The excavation and micro-excavation of archaeological contexts are, and always have been, destructive operations by definition. This study, although preliminary, has allowed the experimentation and application of computed tomography and engineering softwares (used for the creation and manipulation of three-dimensional surfaces) in micro-stratigraphic archaeological excavations, with the objective to overcome the very destructiveness that is intrinsic to the traditional method. For this purpose, a Roman cremation urn from the monumental necropolis in Via Emilia est – Tangenziale Pasternak (Modena) was chosen as a test subject. The application of this approach consented the analysis of both context and remains as close as possible to their original condition, exhibiting minor fragmentation in comparison with the traditional method which in turn allowed a clearer determination of the individual’s biological profile. Moreover, also in virtue of the observation of elements which were not detected by the traditional method, virtual micro-excavation is to be considered a promising approach for the investigation of particular archaeological contexts, enabling greater preservation and enhancing both documentation and analysis.

Comparing traditional and virtual approaches in the microexcavation and analysis of cremated remains.

Owen Alexander Higgins;Antonino Vazzana;Lucia Martina Scalise;Laura Buti;Sara Conti;Eugenio Bortolini;Gregorio Oxilia;Stefano Benazzi
2020

Abstract

The excavation and micro-excavation of archaeological contexts are, and always have been, destructive operations by definition. This study, although preliminary, has allowed the experimentation and application of computed tomography and engineering softwares (used for the creation and manipulation of three-dimensional surfaces) in micro-stratigraphic archaeological excavations, with the objective to overcome the very destructiveness that is intrinsic to the traditional method. For this purpose, a Roman cremation urn from the monumental necropolis in Via Emilia est – Tangenziale Pasternak (Modena) was chosen as a test subject. The application of this approach consented the analysis of both context and remains as close as possible to their original condition, exhibiting minor fragmentation in comparison with the traditional method which in turn allowed a clearer determination of the individual’s biological profile. Moreover, also in virtue of the observation of elements which were not detected by the traditional method, virtual micro-excavation is to be considered a promising approach for the investigation of particular archaeological contexts, enabling greater preservation and enhancing both documentation and analysis.
JOURNAL OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL SCIENCE: REPORTS
Owen Alexander Higgins, Antonino Vazzana, Lucia Martina Scalise, Federica Maria Riso, Laura Buti, Sara Conti, Eugenio Bortolini, Gregorio Oxilia, Stefano Benazzi
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/760152
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