BRONZE AGE: Second age of the Three Age System, beginning about 4000– 3000 bc in the Middle East and about 2000–1500 bc in Europe. It followed the Stone Age and preceded the Iron Age and was defined by a shift from stone tools and weapons to the use of bronze. During this time civilization based on agriculture and urban life developed. Trading to obtain tin for making bronze led to the rapid diffusion of ideas and technological improvements. Bronze artifacts were valued highly and became part of many hoards. In the Americas, true bronze was used in northern Argentina before ad 1000 and its use spread to Peru and the Incas. Bronze was never as important in the New World as in the Old. The Bronze Age is often divided into three periods: Early Bronze Age (c. 4000–2000 bc), Middle Bronze Age (c. 2000–1600 bc), and Late Bronze Age (c. 1600–1200 bc) but the chronological limits and the terminology vary from region to region.
4 Nisan 2015 Cumartesi
BRETON ARROWHEAD: A type of barbed and tanged arrowhead, highly symmetrical in form, with slightly concave or convex sides and flared barbs and the tang the same length as the barbs. It is characteristic of the Early Bronze Age in northern France and southern Britain.
BRASS: General name for alloys of copper with zinc or tin, with the proportions about 70–90% copper and 10–30% of the other base metal. It is possible that due to difficulties in introducing the zinc ore calamine into the melt, brass appeared later in use than bronze (copper and tin) and other copper alloys. Mosaic gold, pinchbeck, and prince’s metal are varieties of brass differing in the proportions of the ingredients. Corinthian brass is an alloy of gold, silver, and copper.
BRADSHAW FIGURES: Small, red, painted figures in scenes of the Kimberley region of Western Australia, named for Joseph Bradshaw who discovered them.
|Dancing Bradshaw figures|
BP: the abbreviation for “before present,” used especially in radiocarbon dating. The fixed reference date for before present has been established as ad 1950. Thus, 4250 bp would mean 4250 years prior to 1950, or 2300 bc. The year 1950 was the latest that the atmosphere was sufficiently uncontaminated to act as a standard for radiocarbon dating. The lower case “bp” represents uncalibrated radiocarbon years; the capitals bp denote a calibrated radiocarbon date, or a date derived
from some other dating method, such as potassium–argon, that does not need calibration.
BOW: An offensive weapon for shooting arrows or missiles and used in hunting and war. It generally consists of a strip of bendable wood or other material with a string stretched between its two ends. The arrow or missile is shot by the recoil after retraction of the string. The weapon was first used in the Upper Paleolithic by the Gravettians. Some Mesolithic examples have been preserved in peat bogs, but often all that remains is an arrowhead or wrist guard.
BOUT COUPé: in British archaeology, a well-made cordiform or subtriangular refined biface from northwest Europe. It may be a diagnostic Mousterian tool.
BOUFFIOULX STONEWARE: the Bouffioulx region has been producing ceramics for almost 500 years. Many artists contributed to the revival of the Bouffioulx genre in the first part of the 20th century when producing hand-thrown stoneware artworks, known today as the grès d’art of Bouffioulx.
BORED STONE: A rounded stone of various sizes with a bored hole in the middle, found in central and southern Africa and dating back 40,000 years. Some were used as weights on digging sticks.
BONDI POINT: A small, asymmetrically backed point, named for Bondi, Sydney, which is a component of the Australian Small Tool tradition. It is usually less than 5 cm (2 inches) long and is sometimes described as a backed blade. Some examples suggest that the points were set in wooden handles or shafts. It occurs on coastal and inland sites across Australia, usually south of the Tropic of Capricorn. The oldest examples come from southeast Australia, dating from about 3000 bc, and the most recent are 300–500 years old. The Bondi point was not being used by Aborigines when Europeans arrived.
BOLT: An iron arrow or missile, especially stout and short with a blunt or thickened head, discharged from a crossbow or other engine. [quarrel]
BOLAS STONE: Weighted balls of stone, bone, ivory, or ceramic that are either grooved or pierced for fastening to rawhide thongs and used to hunt prey. The bolas, still found today among some of the peoples of South America and among the Inuits, usually consists of two or more globular or pear-shaped stones attached to each other by long thongs. They are whirled and thrown at running game, with the thongs wrapping themselves around the limbs of the animal or bird on contact. Bolas stones have been found in many archaeological sites throughout the world, including Africa in Middle and Upper Acheulian strata. [bola, bola stone, bolas; bolases (pl.)]
BODKIN: 1. A sharp slender instrument for making holes or for other functions. It may be shaped like a dagger, stiletto, or hairpin. 2. A blunt needle with a large eye for drawing tape or ribbon through a loop or hem.
BOATSTONE: A boat-shaped stone atlatl – a throwing-stick weight – put on the shaft to give great propulsion to a thrown dart. Unlike the bannerstone, it was apparently lashed to the stick shaft. [bannerstone, birdstone]
3 Nisan 2015 Cuma
BLUNT: A point that abruptly terminates part way up the blade with no true distal point for piercing. Typically the point is chipped in a mild excurvate or straight edge. Some feel that the point may have been used in hunting as a “stunning” weapon. However, most blunts show signs of being a conserved, former projectile, reworked into a handheld or hafted scraper.
BLOCK STATUE: A type of sculpture introduced in the Middle Kingdom (2055–1650 bc), that represents the subject squatting on the ground with knees drawn up close to the body, under the chin. The arms and legs may be wholly contained within the simple cubic form, with the hands and feet protruding discretely. The 12th dynasty block statue of Sihathor in the British Museum is the earliest dated example. The block statue of Queen Hetepheres, in the Egyptian Museum at Cairo, is also one of the earliest examples of this type.
BLATTSPITZEN: A category of stone artifact with complete or nearly complete flaking on both sides and points at one or both ends. They are found in some late Middle and early Upper Paleolithic industries of central and eastern Europe.
BLADE: A long, narrow, sharp-edged, thin flake of stone, used especially as a tool in prehistoric times. This flake was detached by striking from a prepared core, often with a hammer. Its length is usually at least twice the width. The blade may be a tool in itself, or may be the blank from which a two-edged knife, burin, or spokeshave was manufactured. This term, then, is used by archaeologists in several ways. (1) It can refer to a fragment of stone removed from a parent core. The blade is used to manufacture artifacts in what is known as the blade and core industry. (2) That portion of an artifact, usually a projectile point or a knife, beyond the base or tang. (3) In certain cultures, small artifacts are called microblades. It was a great technological advance when it was discovered that a knapper could make more than one tool from a chunk of stone. The Châtelperronian and Aurignacian were the earliest of the known blade cultures – associated with the arrival of modern humans. Industries in which many of the tools are made from blades became prominent at the start of the Upper Paleolithic period. A typical blade has parallel sides and regular scars running down its back parallel with the sides. A “backed blade” is a blade with one edge blunted by the removal of tiny flakes. Blades led to another invention – the handle. A handle made it easier and much safer to manipulate a sharp, two-edged blade. [blade tool]
BLACK GLAZED: A style of pottery decoration in which plain wares were given a black sheen, which continued well into the Hellenistic period – especially in Athens from the 6th to 2nd centuries bc. These wares were often made alongside figure-decorated pottery and, from the 5th century bc, the shapes were frequently of stamped decoration. In the 4th century bc, rouletting was also used. [black-glossed]
BLACK FIGURE: A type of Greek pottery that originated in Corinth c. 700 bc and was popular until red-figure pottery, its inverse, began in c. 530 bc. This style consisted of pottery with one or more bands of human and animal figures silhouetted in black against the tan or red ground. The red color was probably taken when the pot was fired. The delineation of the figures was often heightened by the use of incised lines and the addition of white or purple coloring. The figures and ornamentation were drawn on the natural clay surface of a vase in glossy black pigment; the finishing details were incised into the black. The first significant use of the black-figure technique was on proto- Corinthian-style pottery developed in Corinth in the first half of the 7th century bc. The Corinthian painter’s primary ornamental device was the animal frieze. The Athenians, who began to use the technique at the end of the 7th century bc, retained the Corinthian use of animal friezes for decoration until c. 550 bc, when the great Attic painters developed narrative scene decoration and perfected the black-figure style. There were also studios producing black-figure ware in Sparta and eastern Greece. [Black-figure ware; black-figured (adj.)]
BLACK BURNISHED WARE: Culinary vessel forms made in two different fabrics and widely imitated. One was black, gritty, and handmade from c. ad 120 to the late 4th century ad. A second was more gray and finer, with a silvery finish, and wheel-thrown in the Thames Estuary area c. ad 140 to the mid 3rd century ad. [black burnished ware]
BLACK AND RED WARE: Any Indian pottery with black rims and interior and red on the outside, due to firing in the inverted position, which was made beginning in the Iron Age. Characteristic forms include shallow dishes and deeper bowls. It first appeared on late sites of the Indus civilization and was a standard feature of the Banas culture. This ware has been found throughout much of the Indian peninsula with dates of the later 2nd and early 1st millennium bc. In the 1st millennium it became widespread in association with iron and megalithic monuments. In the Ganges Valley it post-dates ocher-colored pottery and generally precedes painted gray ware. [Black and Red ware]
BIRD-STONE: A class of prehistoric stone objects of undetermined purpose, usually resembling or shaped like a bird; carved bird effigies. These polished stone weights occurred in the cultures of the Archaic tradition (8000–1000 bc) and later cultures in the eastern woodlands of North America. They were probably attached to throwing sticks or atlatls to add weight and leverage. [bannerstone, bird-stone, boatstone]
BIRCH-BARK MANUSCRIPT: Early Russian letters and documents scratched onto thin pieces of birch bark, dating to the 11th to 15th centuries ad. They were first found in 1951 in Novgorod by A. Artsikhovski and form a very important source of information as no other documents earlier than the 13th century have survived because of frequent fires in the wooden cities of Old Russia. The manuscripts are quite well preserved from layers of organic materials. [birch-bark beresty]
BIPOLAR PERCUSSION: A type of percussion that involves the placement of raw material (usually small rounded or oval cobbles) on an anvil stone and striking it from the top. [bipolar flaking, bipolar technique]
BIG HORN MEDICINE WHEEL: A medicine wheel in the Big Horn Mountains of Wyoming that consists of a D-shaped stone cairn from which 28 individual stone spokes radiate. The outer circumference has six smaller cairns. The feature may be astronomically aligned.
BIFID RAZOR: Type of tool, possibly a razor, of the Middle Bronze Age of Europe, with two ovate, sharp-edged lobes of thin metal attached to a central tang.
2 Nisan 2015 Perşembe
BIFACE: A type of prehistoric stone tool flaked on both faces or sides; the main tool of Homo erectus. The technique was typical of the handax tradition of the Lower Paleolithic period and the Acheulian cultures. Bifaces may be oval, triangular, or almond-shaped in form and characterized by axial symmetry, even if the marks made by use are more plentiful on one face or on one edge. The cutting edge could be straight or jagged and the tool used as a pick, knife, scraper, or even weapon. Only in the most primitive tools was flaking done to one side only. [bifacial, coup-de-poing, hand ax]
|Cordiform biface typical of the Middle Palaeolithic. (Longueur : 11 cm).|
BICONICAL URN: Style of Early Bronze Age pot of northwestern Europe with a deep, largely plain, outwardly flared body. Above that is a sharp carination, decorated and sometimes with an applied cordon, and an inwardly angled neck with impressed cord designs. The rim is typically beveled and lightly ornamented.
BICONICAL DRILLING: A means of perforating beads or pendants for suspension. Accomplished by drilling in from both sides with a tapered drill resulting in an hourglass-shaped hole.
BI DISK: A flat jade disk with a small hole in the center, made in ancient China for ceremonial purposes, possibly symbolizing heaven. Bi disks have also been described in ancient Chinese texts as a symbol of rank. Jade disks and disklike axes have been found in 4th and 3rd millennium bc graves at east-coast Neolithic sites such as Beiyinyangying. Polished stone disk segments are known still earlier at Banpo. [bi]
BEWCASTLE CROSS: A runic standing cross monument in the churchyard of Bewcastle, Northumberland, northern England, dating from the late 7th or early 8th century. Although the top of the cross has been lost, the 4.5 m (15-foot) shaft remains, with distinct panels of the figures of Christ in Majesty, St. John the Baptist, and St. John the Evangelist, while on the back there is an inhabited vinescroll. Like the Ruthwell Cross, that at Bewcastle possesses a poem inscribed in runic script. The worn inscription suggests that the monument was a memorial to Alchfrith, son of Oswiu of Northumbria, and his wife Cyneburh (Cyniburug). It is one of the finest examples of early Christian Northumbrian art.
1 Nisan 2015 Çarşamba
BEVELED-RIM BOWL: A widespread, crudely made conical pottery vessel formed in a mold and having a sloped rim, characteristic of the late Uruk period.
BENTY GRANGE HELMET: An Anglo-Saxon ceremonial helmet found in 1848 at a burial site in Benty Grange. Unlike the Sutton Hoo helmet, which has similarities to Swedish helmets, the Benty Grange example was undoubtedly of native workmanship. It is an elaborate object combining the pagan boar symbol with Christian crosses on the nail heads.
BENTONITES: A clay formed by the decomposition of volcanic ash, having the ability to absorb large quantities of water and to expand to several times its normal volume.
BENTON FLAKING: This flaking technique involved the removal of large and small percussion flakes, which resulted in numerous step fractures. Pressure flaking was often used to form serrations. Oblique-transverse flaking was used to shape the blade of a few examples.
BENBEN STONE: A cult object made of stone, found at sites such as the one for the sun god Re at Heliopolis. The sacred stone symbolized the Primeval Mound and perhaps also the petrified semen of the deity. It served as the earliest prototype for the obelisk and possibly even the pyramid. It was probably constructed in the early Old Kingdom, c. 2600 bc.
BELT HOOK: small decorative and functional object used as a garment hook in China, Korea, and other Near Eastern areas as early as the 7th century bc. Belt hooks have been found in Han tombs in southwestern China, but this luxury item was most in vogue during the Warring States period (5th to 3rd centuries bc). These belt hooks were inlaid with gold or silver foil, polished fragments of turquoise, or more rarely with jade or glass; sometimes they were gilded. Most examples are bronze, often lavishly decorated with inlays, but some are made of jade, gold, or iron. The belt hook consists of a bar or flat strip curving into a hook at one end and carrying at the other end, on the back, a button for securing it to the belt. The hooks vary widely in size, shape, and design, and although contemporary sculptures sometimes show them at the waists of human figures, some examples are far too large to have been worn and their function is unclear. Textual evidence hints that the belt hook was adopted by the Chinese from the mounted nomads of the northern frontier of inner Asia, perhaps
along with other articles of the horseman’s costume. They were probably worn by both men and women. [toggle]
BELL BEAKER: A type of pottery vessel found all over western and central Europe from the Final Neolithic or Chalcolithic, c. 2500– 1800 bc. The culture’s name derives from the characteristic pottery, which looks like an inverted bell with globular body and flaring rim. The beakers were valuable and highly decorated. They are often associated with special artifacts in grave assemblages, including polished stone wristguards, V-perforated buttons, and copper-tanged daggers.
BELGIC POTTERY: General term sometimes applied to the range of Late Iron Age wheel-turned pottery vessels found in southeastern England, especially Aylesford-Swarling pottery.
BEAKER: A simple pottery drinking vessel without handles, more deep than wide, much used in prehistoric Europe. The pottery was usually red or brown burnished ware, decorated with horizontal panels of combor cord-impressed designs. It was distributed in Europe from Spain to Poland, and from Italy to Scotland in the years after 2500 bc; the international bell beaker is particularly widespread, though uncommon in Britain. In Britain there are local variants: the long-necked (formerly A) beakers of eastern England and the short-necked (formerly C) beakers of Scotland. There were local developments elsewhere, such as the Veluwe beakers in the Netherlands. Beaker vessels are commonly found in graves, which were often single inhumations under round barrows; commonly associated finds include copper or bronze daggers and ornaments, flint arrowheads, stone wristguards, and stone battle axes. In many northern and western areas its users were the first to start
copper metallurgy. The widespread distribution of beaker finds has led to the frequent identification of a Beaker people and speculations about their origins.
31 Mart 2015 Salı
BEACHARRA WARE: type of decorated Middle Neolithic pottery of western parts of Scotland. The ware is classified into three groups: (1) unornamented, bag-shaped bowls; (2) decorated, carinated bowls with a rim diameter less than the diameter at the carination and with incised or channeled ornament; and (3) small bowls with panel ornament in fine whipped cord.
BCE: An abbreviation used to denote so many years before the common era or before the Christian era. Dates are often listed as bce (= bc) and ce (common era or Christian era = ad). In the Gregorian calendar, eras are designated bce and ce, terms which are equivalent to bc (before Christ) and ad (Latin: anno Domini).
BAYEUX TAPESTRY: a medieval embroidery depicting the Norman Conquest of England in 1066, which is considered a remarkable work of art and important as a source for 11th-century history. It consists of a roll of unbleached linen worked in colored worsted with illustrations and is about 70 m (75 yards) long and 50 cm (20 inches) deep. The work was probably commissioned by Bishop Odo of Bayeux, a half-brother of William the Conquerer, and took about 2 years to complete. It was likely finished no later than 1092. The tapestry depicts the events leading up to the invasion of England by William Duke of Normandy and the Battle of Hastings on October 14, 1066, when the English King Harold was defeated and killed. Though not proven, the tapestry appears to have been designed and embroidered in England. The themes are enacted much like that of a feudal drama or chanson de geste. The technical detail and iconography of the Bayeux Tapestry are of great importance. For instance, the 33 buildings depicted offer a look at the contemporary churches, castles, towers, and motte and bailey castles. The battle scenes give details on infantry and cavalry formations, Norman armor and weapons, and the clothing and hairstyles of the time. The invasion fleet consists of Viking double-enders (clinker-built long boats, propelled by oars and a single mast). The tapestry was discovered in the nave of Bayeux Cathedral in France by French antiquarian and scholar Bernard de Montfaucon, who published the earliest complete reproduction of it in 1730. It narrowly escaped destruction during the French Revolution, was exhibited in Paris at Napoleon’s wish in 1803–04, and thereafter has been kept in the Bayeux public library.
BATTLE AX: A type of prehistoric stone weapon, designed as a weapon of war. It is always of the shaft-hole variety, and frequently has a hammer, knob, or point at the opposite end from the cutting edge. In stone, they are common throughout most of Europe in the Late Neolithic and Copper Age, and are often associated with Corded ware and beakers. (The term Battle-ax culture is often used as a synonym for Corded ware or Single Grave culture.) Further east, more elaborate ones of copper or gold were more ceremonial than functional. The Vikings made iron battle axes and used them well into the Middle Ages. The pole ax is distinguished from the battle ax by a spike on the back of the ax. [battle-axe, battleaxe]
BATON DE COMMANDEMENT: A name given to perforated batons made of antler rod of the Upper Paleolithic period in western Europe, from the Aurignacian period (30,000 years ago) through the Magdalenian. They have a hole through the thickest part of the head, are usually 30 cm (12 inches) long, but are often broken. The perforation is smooth and round, and highly decorated examples come from the Magdalenian culture. Their use is unknown.