Ploughsoil Assemblages and Beyond: Some Interpretative Challenges

Simonetta Menchelli


The present remarks derive from on-going topographic-archaeological projects focusing on North coastal Etruria and South Picenum. These studies apply a global archaeology approach that includes diachronic and interdisciplinary research. In our projects particular attention is being paid to palaeogeographic aspects. Processual methodology standards are applied to our research; nevertheless, geomorphologic, spatial and quantitative evidence is integrated with qualitative and symbolic data to reconstruct all the anthropic activities. Some remarks will be made about the informative potential of ploughsoil findings, landscape complexity, strategies in collecting and studying pottery and on the importance of considering the absence of particular categories of materials. Following this global approach and its consequential theoretical framework and rigorous methodology, archaeologists will be able to take up the interpretative challenge of defining landscapes in terms of their different components: sites, off-sites and their historical-functional classification. Obviously, the objective and subjective standards used for these classifications have to be explained clearly, so that the research results of a district can be used for comparisons and large-scale analyses.


Etruria, Picenum, Survey, Off-Sites, Pottery

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Copyright (c) 2016 Simonetta Menchelli

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LAC 2014 proceedings - ISBN 978-90-825296-0-9 - is an open access initiative supported by the University Library, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.