If Jurassic Park is one of your all-time favorite movies or you’ve always had a curiosity about what you can find when you dig deeper under the surface of your backyard , then maybe you could find a future in archeology , the field of study that centers on the lives of ancient people. From Greek warriors to Roman Empires, you never know what secrets of the past are awaiting your discovery.
The Definition of Archeology
When you study archeology, you will explore the way ancient people lived and what they looked like. You will learn the kinds of foods that they ate and the tools they used to build their homes and prepare their meals. A wealth of information regarding cultures you’ve never heard of are found in every corner of the earth, offering the chance to explore unimaginable locations about the world. In a nutshell, archeologists provide a scientific look at the remains of past civilizations or groups of people.
The Job of an Archeologist
It is the job of an archeologist to find and put together the puzzle pieces of the past. With a great deal of missing links and unanswered questions, archeologists sift through the clues that our ancient ancestors have left behind. There’s a lot of scientific detective work that an archeologist completes. When taking a look at the items that ancient people once used, thousands upon thousands of years ago , a clearer picture develops regarding how a certain civilization once thrived.
An archeologist will pay attention to how people lived, reconstruct their homes, piece together shreds of clothing, and analyze bones. They learn about ancient cultures by scanning their burial customs, all the way up to the garbage they’ve discarded.
Before an archeologist begins a dig, a lot of research is involved to determine suitable places to investigate. Over time, a great deal of ancient civilizations has been covered by an accumulation of dirt, dust, and other biological materials. However, archeologists are taught to use common knowledge to identify locations that could reap a wealth of archeological information. For starters, archeologists are trained to know that ancient people required various items in order to survive, like sources of food, access to water, and routes that provided opportunities to trade with others and migrate. Armed with this knowledge, finding places that ancient civilizations were most likely developed is not as difficult as it seems.
Every once in a while, regular people (like construction workers or farmers) come across something of interest that looks like it came from the past. Often times, an archeologist is called to help out with the situation, such as the delicate removal of bones or shattered pottery.
Archeologists also pinpoint adequate dig sites by investigating buildings, ruins, unusual mounds, and pieces of land that sink in after a change in weather, such as a flood or hurricane. Sometimes, potential archeological sites are located through analyzing aerial photography that can pinpoint the positioning of old roads and walls that once existed above ground. It’s also not uncommon for an archeologist to scan old books and maps for clues on finding old civilizations.