1998 TOP SECRET TRICK PAGE
As we have already learned, when an excavation is done
it reveals TWO dimensions about the past.
The horizontal (sideways) excavation reveals the site as it was
at a time in the past. For example, the horizontal dimension shows
the house floors with furnishings like benches
and things like hearths and rubbish pits.
The vertical (up and down) excavation shows the sequence
of change over time at the site.
From this, archaeological detectives can figure out
the relationships between one time period to another.
For example, if I excavate down in a trench and find housefloors
I may be able to tell if people had lived at that site all the time
and never left for hundreds of years or if people had come
and gone over time, leaving the area unlived in for periods of time.
I know, I know, this is a bit tricky to understand but be patient,
I know that you'll get it!
We can excavate both horizontally and vertically on a site but we use different techniques for each one.
In this Top Secret Trick page I'll explain the grid system for
vertical excavation. If you have been a good detective
you probably remember the system for horizontal excavation.
The Grid System - for Vertical Excavation
This involves dividing the site into squares of equal size.
These squares are then excavated, leaving narrow unexcavated strips between them in which the vertical cross sections are preserved.
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Imagine that the drawing above is your site.  All the squares you have excavated already are in brown, these would be your holes into the ground.
Now think about the white spaces in between these holes, in these spots, the earth is still standing, just as it was before.  Imagine jumping right into one of the holes and looking at the earth that was still standing (vertical). What would you see?  Well, you would probably see layers! If you were lucky, you might even see an artifact sticking out!
Got it? Right on!!
TAKE ME TO 1998 !