Encyclopedia of Global Archaeology

2014 Edition
| Editors: Claire Smith

Environmental Sampling in Mediterranean Archaeology

  • Seth Button
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-0465-2_1546


The Mediterranean region today possesses a large number of heterogeneous microenvironments. Hot, dry summers and wet, cool winters are common, but by no means invariable, while a high degree of variation in lithology, surface geology, and topographic relief produces fragmented vegetation zones ranging from desert to alpine, with abundant interfaces between zones. Overall, there is a pronounced altitudinal climate gradient, with upland regions often cooler and wetter. There is good reason to believe that environmental parameters had a strong influence on where ancient people chose to settle, the strategies they pursued in their management of crops and domestic animals, and the long-term success of these symbiotic human/plant/animal communities.

By definition, the process of environmental sampling involves taking samples, characterizing them according to certain parameters (size, age, species), and extrapolating from them to a larger population, in order to permit the...

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Logan Simpson DesignSalt Lake CityUSA