Skip to main content

Principles & Methods of Classical Archaeology - Essays

For a general guide to writing essays, please consult the student handbook. The following notes are intended to help with writing essays for this or another module dealing with material culture. They are based on the experience with essays in earlier years.

It is essential to structure the essay, and there should be three parts.
1) The introduction. Here you try to lay out your plan, the aims, and the questions you are going to address. Explain how you will proceed.
2) The body part of the piece. Here you present your arguments, which are built on both primary and secondary sources. Primary sources can be ancient texts, but in archaeology, your primary source is material evidence: data from sites, information from strata, from monuments and from small finds.
Look at these carefully and make up your own mind with the help of secondary sources. The use of specialised books and articles is recommended, as is a comparison of the views of several scholars on a topic. Try to create a scientific debate and to cite differing views of scholars or 'schools'. Avoid the use of quotes as a substitute for your own words and arguments. Marks will be awarded for your own, creative thoughts on hard data. Illustrate sites or objects you are commenting on.
3) The conclusion sums up the essence of your results and is basically the answer to the questions addressed in the introduction.

Essays should be provided with proper bibliographic references. Make use of the Departmental Style Guide, not only for the bibliography, but also for other parts of the essay, such as the captions of pictures. For a general guide to writing essays, please consult the student handbook.

Written work is expected to be your own; unacknowledged or disguised quotation of others’ work constitutes plagiarism and will attract a mark of zero.

If you think you have a justified reason for submitting an essay late (see Departmental Handbook), you should see the Director of Undergraduate Studies, Dr David fearn.

Term 1 (essays due on Tuesday 28 November 2017)

1. To what extent do surveys complement information on sites?

Alcock, S.E. (2012, 2nd ed.), ‘The essential countryside. The Greek World’, in Classical Archaeology, S.E. Alcock and R. Osborne ed. (Chichester, West Sussex ; Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell), pp. 120-138 and 156-161 [DE 86.C58]
Aston, M. (1998) Interpreting the Landscape: Landscape Archaeology and Local History (London: Routledge) [DA 668.A8]
Banning, E.B. (2002) Archaeological Survey (New York: Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers) [CC 76.3.B2]
Bettess F. (1992) Surveying for Archaeologists (Durham: Department of Archaeology, University of Durham) [CC 76.3.B3]
Collins, J.M. (2003) Archaeological Survey (Walnut Creek, Calif.; Oxford : Altamira Press) [CC 76.3.C6]
@Drewett P. (2011 2nd ed.) Field Archaeology. An Introduction (Taylor & Francis)
Hooke, D. (2000) Landscape: The Richest Historical Record (Amesbury,Wiltshire: Society for Landscape Studies) [DA 667.L2]
Leach, P. (1994) Surveying Archaeological Sites (London: Archetype Publications) [CC 76.3.L3, Pamphlets]
Newman, Ph. (2011) The Field Archaeology of Dartmoor (Swindon: English Heritage) [DA 670.23.D2]
Terrenato, N. (2012, 2nd ed.), ‘The essential countryside. The Roman World’, in Alcock S.E. & Osborne R. (ed.), Classical Archaeology (Chichester, West Sussex ; Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell), pp. 1-29 [DE 86.C58]

2. Is it fair to claim that underwater archaeology provides unique data in archaeology?
Bass, G. F. (2005) Beneath the Seven Seas: Adventures with the Institute of Nautical Archaeology (London: Thames & Hudson) [CC 76.B3]
@Carlson, D. N. (2003) ‘The Classical Greek Shipwreck at Tektaş Burnu, Turkey’, American Journal of Archaeology 107: 581-600
Delgado, J. P. (1997) British Museum Encyclopaedia of Underwater and Maritime Archaeology (London: British Museum Press)
De Donato, G. (2003) Mare Nostrum, The Roman Sea (London: Periplus) [CC 76.7.D6]
Muckleroy, K. (1978) Maritime Archaeology (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press) [CC 77.2.U5]
McCann, A. M., Oleson, J.P. (2004) Deep-water Shipwrecks off Skerki Bank: The 1997 Survey. Journal of Roman Archaeology. Supplementary Series 58 (Porthmouth, Rhode Island) [CC 76.7.M2]
National Archaeological Museum April 2012 – April 2013 (Athens: National Archaeological Museum) [CC 77.U5]
Parker, A.J. (1992) Ancient Shipwrecks of the Mediterranean, BAR International Series 580 (Oxford: Tempus Reparatum) [DE 66.P2]
Roskams, S. 2000 Interpreting Stratigraphy - Papers presented to the Interpreting Stratigraphy Conferences 1993-1997. Archaeopress, Oxford. ISBN 1841712108 Main Library Oversize CC 77.5.I6
Roskams, S. 2001 – Excavation Cambridge Manuals in Archaeology Cambridge: CUP. Main Library CC 76.2.R6
Rudel, M. et. al. (2003) Underwater Archaeology, History and Methodology (London: Periplus) [CC 77.2.U5]
M. Walsh, Roman (2000) ‘Maritime Archaeology around Britain: What is the evidence and how might it be enhanced?’, in G. Fincham et al. (ed.), Proceedings of the Ninth Annual Theoretical Roman Archaeology Conference, Durham 1999 (Oxford: Oxbow): 53-63. [CC 75.T4]

3. Archaeology in the Mediterranean areas and in the North-Western Provinces: are they different?
Biers, W., 'Archaeology in Greece'. In: The Archaeology of Greece: an introduction, 2nd ed., London 1996, pp.13-22
@Bintliff, J. (2012) The Complete Archaeology of Greece: from hunter Gatherers to the 20th Century AD (Chichester, West Sussex; Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell) [DF 77.B62]
@Jane DeRose Evans, J. (ed., 2011) A Companion to the Archaeology of the Roman Republic (Chichester, West Sussex UK: Wiley Blackwell)
Hunter, J. and Ralston, I. (ed.) (2009, 2nd ed.) The Archaeology of Britain. An Introduction from the Earliest Times to the Twenty-First Century (London and New York: Routledge) [DA 90.A7]
@Magness, J. (2012) The Archaeology of the Holy Land. From the Destruction of Solomon's Temple to the Muslim Conquest (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press)
Millet, M. (2012, 2nd ed.) Roman Archaeology, in Alcock S.E. & Osborne R. (ed.), Classical Archaeology (Chichester, West Sussex ; Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell), pp. 30-52 [DE 86.C58]
Newman, Ph. (2011) The Field Archaeology of Dartmoor (Swindon: English Heritage) [DA 670.23.D2]
Snodgrass, A. (2012, 2nd ed.), Greek Archaeology, in Alcock S.E. & Osborne R. (ed.), Classical Archaeology (Chichester, West Sussex ; Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell), pp. 1-29 [DE 86.C58]
@ Snodgrass, A. (1992) An Archaeology of Greece: the present state and future scope of a discipline, Berkeley (Oxford: University of California Press) [DF 77.S6]
Wacher J. (1997, 2nd ed.), The Towns of Roman Britain (London: Routledge) [DA 145.W4]
White, R. and Barker, Ph. (2002) Wroxeter. The Life and Death of a Roman City (Stroud: Tempus Publishing) [DA 147.W7 and 913.36 WHI in external store]
Whitley J. (2001), The Archaeology of Ancient Greece (Cambridge: Cambridge University press) [DF 77.W4].

Term 2 (essays due on Monday 26 February 2016)

titles tbc


BA_Münzen aus KisteRome, Basilica Aemilia on the Forum Romanum: lump of coins in the ashes of the late Roman destruction layer attributed to the sack of Alarich's troops in 410 AD.