IISER Mohali, Knowledge city, Sector 81, SAS Nagar, Manauli PO 140306

Understanding ancient technology through an experimental approach

Dr. S.Udayakumar  (Faculty Candidate)

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The term experimental archaeology is a convenient way of describing the collection of facts, theories and fictions that have been assembled through a century of interest in the reconstruction and function of ancient remains. This research is an attempt to provide an explanation of some of the theory and principles involved in experimental archaeology. The aim of this research is to understand and observe the nano aspects of ancient technology through an experimental approach. In this research, the author has taken three different techniques for the experimental study that is pottery techniques (hand-made and wheel-made), making bone point & knife technique and iron smelting technique process. In this research, the author is trying to indicate how experimental archaeology plays a very prominent role to understand the archaeology in a different view. As concern to pottery technique, the author has nailed all stages involved in pottery techniques such as preparation of clay, hand-made pottery, and wheel-made pottery, burnishing, pre-heating the pottery and firing process. In the focus of bone point & knife making technique, it has a document time period of bone buried in the pit, cleaning process, making half-burned bone point and making without a burned bone point. In the process of iron smelting, furnaces are broken, and the tuyere is removed to recover the bloom. New furnaces maybe then constructed either on the same spot as the previous one or adjacent to it. In the context of archaeological sites, several overlapping sequences of furnaces may be interpreted in diverse ways, e.g. successive cultural and heritage phases, different phases of occupation, etc. Here, the author examines this question by looking at the process of furnace construction and destruction in ethnographic, heritage and experimental studies. This is then contrasted with the furnace distribution pattern at the Early Historic sites of Iswal and Nathara-ki-Pal, Rajasthan. Questions addressed include 1. number of furnaces and correlation with each other in terms of spatial distribution; 2. furnaces versus demography; 3. relationship of furnaces to tuyeres, and the importance of the latter in terms of use/reuse.

Meeting ID: 970 2765 6822
Passcode: 463998
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