Dating exposed surface contexts

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Stratigraphy Stratigraphy is the examination of the layering of archeological remains of a site.

By generally adhering to the law of superposition, which establishes that layers of remains closer to the surface hail from a more recent period of history, stratigraphy can establish the relative dates of the different phases of remains, creating a sequential history of a site.

Ioannis spoke to me after his work in the field on Monday and on Tuesday to explain the process.

Most people have heard of radiocarbon dating – a method for finding out how long since something organic (human, animal or plant, such as bones or wood) stopped living.

They can be deposits (such as the back-fill of a ditch), structures (such as walls), or "zero thickness surfaciques", better known as "cuts".

At this level of specificity, we can compare the luminescence signals of sherds exposed to varying temperatures and duration of heat at the same time.

This study is a guide for archaeologists dating sites where surface collection of artifacts is the only sampling method permitted.

On Monday 12 November 2012, Ioannis Liritzis, Professor of Archaeometry from the University of the Aegean, Dept of Mediterranean Studies Laboratory of Archaeometry, visited the Zagora site to undertake surface luminescence dating to help us determine when a wall was built.

This is a wall on a low portion at the south of the site where the slope is quite accessible up to the plateau.

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