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6390 Scientific dating of Pleistocene sites: guidelines for best practice

6390 Scientific dating of Pleistocene sites: guidelines for best practice
6390 Scientific dating of Pleistocene sites: guidelines for best practice
These guidelines provide advice on best practice for the effective use of scientific dating on Pleistocene sites. They are applicable to all archaeological projects, but are aimed primarily at those undertaken as part of the planning process. Pleistocene sites typically produce limited material that is suitable for dating. Some of the methods that can be employed are familiar to those working in later periods (eg Radiocarbon Dating), although special considerations for their effective use may apply. Other methods (eg the ’Vole Clock‘) are only used in the Pleistocene. The selection of appropriate techniques, given the available types of datable material, its taphonomic relationship to the archaeological objectives of the project, and the expected time-range of the site, is key. Different strands of evidence can be explicitly combined using Bayesian statistical modelling, and the resultant chronologies can be validated, not only by comparison to relative dating from stratigraphy, but also by employing multiple scientific dating techniques. Above all, seek expert advice. All laboratories will be happy to advise on applying their technique to Pleistocene deposits, and will welcome the opportunity to discuss sample selection and potential methods of cross-checking their results with you. It is by working together with a range of specialists that you will provide the best dating possible for your site.
Pleistocene, Guidelines, Scientific Dating, Quaternary, Radiocarbon Dating, Uranium-Thorium dating, Luminescence dating, Amino acid racemization, Palaeomagnetism, Tephrochronology, ’Vole Clock’, Archaeology, Palaeolithic, Excavation, Analysis
Historic England
Marshall, Peter
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Bayliss, Alex
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Grant, Michael
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Bridgland, David R.
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Duller, Geoff
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Housley, Rupert
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Matthews, Ian
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Outram, Zoe
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Penkman, Kirsty E.H.
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Pike, Alistair
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Schreve, Danielle
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Xuan, Chuang
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Marshall, Peter
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Bayliss, Alex
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Grant, Michael
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Bridgland, David R.
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Duller, Geoff
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Housley, Rupert
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Matthews, Ian
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Outram, Zoe
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Penkman, Kirsty E.H.
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Pike, Alistair
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Schreve, Danielle
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Xuan, Chuang
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Marshall, Peter, Bayliss, Alex, Grant, Michael, Bridgland, David R., Duller, Geoff, Housley, Rupert, Matthews, Ian, Outram, Zoe, Penkman, Kirsty E.H., Pike, Alistair, Schreve, Danielle and Xuan, Chuang (2020) 6390 Scientific dating of Pleistocene sites: guidelines for best practice Swindon, UK. Historic England 106pp. (Submitted)

Record type: Monograph (Project Report)

Abstract

These guidelines provide advice on best practice for the effective use of scientific dating on Pleistocene sites. They are applicable to all archaeological projects, but are aimed primarily at those undertaken as part of the planning process. Pleistocene sites typically produce limited material that is suitable for dating. Some of the methods that can be employed are familiar to those working in later periods (eg Radiocarbon Dating), although special considerations for their effective use may apply. Other methods (eg the ’Vole Clock‘) are only used in the Pleistocene. The selection of appropriate techniques, given the available types of datable material, its taphonomic relationship to the archaeological objectives of the project, and the expected time-range of the site, is key. Different strands of evidence can be explicitly combined using Bayesian statistical modelling, and the resultant chronologies can be validated, not only by comparison to relative dating from stratigraphy, but also by employing multiple scientific dating techniques. Above all, seek expert advice. All laboratories will be happy to advise on applying their technique to Pleistocene deposits, and will welcome the opportunity to discuss sample selection and potential methods of cross-checking their results with you. It is by working together with a range of specialists that you will provide the best dating possible for your site.

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Submitted date: 10 January 2020
Keywords: Pleistocene, Guidelines, Scientific Dating, Quaternary, Radiocarbon Dating, Uranium-Thorium dating, Luminescence dating, Amino acid racemization, Palaeomagnetism, Tephrochronology, ’Vole Clock’, Archaeology, Palaeolithic, Excavation, Analysis

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 440891
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/440891
PURE UUID: f98cc067-18af-45d5-b625-7a585783a478
ORCID for Michael Grant: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-4766-6913
ORCID for Alistair Pike: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-5610-8948
ORCID for Chuang Xuan: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-4043-3073

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 21 May 2020 16:33
Last modified: 13 Oct 2021 01:45

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Contributors

Author: Peter Marshall
Author: Alex Bayliss
Author: Michael Grant ORCID iD
Author: David R. Bridgland
Author: Geoff Duller
Author: Rupert Housley
Author: Ian Matthews
Author: Zoe Outram
Author: Kirsty E.H. Penkman
Author: Alistair Pike ORCID iD
Author: Danielle Schreve
Author: Chuang Xuan ORCID iD

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