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The first impression of an archaeologist printed in our minds is Indiana Jones. That’s exactly what archaeologists are not. The study of ancient societies and archeology has a deeper meaning than that. It has several interesting aspects that will intrigue you.
You must have heard about lost cities across the world, like Mohenjo-Daro in Pakistan, Ani In Turkey, Mesa Verde national park in the US, Petra in Jordan, etc. All of these are examples of archeology. These discoveries have connected us with ancient times. That’s exactly the purpose of studying ancient societies.
Let’s learn more about it.
What is archeology?
The one-liner answer to this question is that archeology is the field that studies ancient societies. It is a study of humanity and its past. It is a fascinating field that consists of various specializations. The Greek language gave the word ‘archeology.’ It combines Archana, which means ancient things, and Logos, which means science.
The term archeology existed between the 15th and 16th centuries in Europe. Pope, cardinals, and noblemen in Italy used to sponsor excavators to collect ancient artifacts. This antique collection eventually turned into an attempt to connect with ancient societies in the 19th century.
Since then, the ones who study material remains from past human lives and analyze them are called archeologists. Through these artifacts, they try to comprehend the societal structure of the time. Specializations in archeological studies include different materials. We will learn about them further in this article.
How does it work?
Archeology involves teamwork. People with different specializations work together to discover and analyze an artifact. It includes botanists, zoologists, soil scientists, and geologists to work on studying different factors of the remains. They study plants, animals, soil, and rocks found near the artifact.
Excavation is a well-known and surgical part of archeology. The craftsmen have to dig the landscape to discover the artifacts. They are well-planned and executed. One of the prominent examples of excavation is the discovery of ancient towns. They are as follows.
|No.||Ancient cities||Location||Year of excavation|
|1||Tell es-sultan||Jerico, West bank||1868|
Different types of archeology
As mentioned earlier, archeology comes with interesting specializations. These specializations define the role of the archeologist in the field of discovery. Although there are two main types of archeology, prehistoric and historic. Other than that, it has specializations like.
|1||Bioarchaeology.||Study of human remains|
|2||Zooarcheology.||Study of animal remains|
|3||Paleoethnobotany.||Study of ancient plants|
|4||Lithics||Study of stone tools|
|5||Ethnoarcheology||Study of instruments used by the people daily|
|6||Environmental archaeology||Study of the environment conditions|
|7||Experimental archaeology||Replicate the techniques used in the past|
|8||Forensic anthropology||Study of the DNA evidence|
|9||Marine archaeology||Study of the ancient remains underwater|
|10||Urban archaeology||Study of the ancient cities|
|11||Museology||Restoring the artifacts|
Study programs in archeology
If all this information intrigues you, then you have to know about these courses. There are multiple bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral courses in archaeology. Some of the courses are as follows
|Bachelor’s degree||Master’s degree|
|B.A. in Archeology||M.A. in Anthropology|
|Bachelor in Archeology||M.A. in Archeology|
|B.A. (Hons) in Heritage and Archeology||Master’s in Heritage preservation|
|B.A. in History||M.A. in Medieval studies|
Subjects in the study of ancient societies
Archeology is a vast field to study. It links ancient societies with us. The study programs include subjects that will help you understand the factors of archeology. They are as follows.
- Introduction to archeology
- Science in archeology
- Methods in archaeology
Top universities to study of ancient societies
The universities in the United States are the best to study archeology. The world ranking of these universities is the reason behind this. Let’s take a look at the top 5 universities in the United States to study archeology.
|No.||Universities||Ranking||Tuition fees in $|
|3||John Hopkins University||7||60,480|
- The study of ancient societies and archeology has a wide scope for career growth.
- Paleontology, in which we study the dinosaurs, is a part of prehistoric archeology.
- Archeology is considered to be a discipline that is half science and half humanity.
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Q1. Who was the first archeologist?
Answer: King Nabonidus of ancient Mesopotamia is the first archeologist who discovered the deposit of the Akkadian Empire ruler.
Q2. How old is the study of ancient societies?
Answer: Archeology is known to be about 150 years old.
Q3. Which city was first discovered by archaeologists?
Answer: Harappa is the first city discovered by archeologists.