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"Dendrochronology" (so-called tree-ring dating) is explicated next, and its nearly world wide applications are reviewed.The subsequent group of techniques depends upon the physicochemical premise that unstable parent isotopes decay at a known rate and produce stable daughter isotopes.In essence, the reader is exposed to a history of the refinement of a scientific procedure.All of the chapters present several examples or practical applications that demonstrate the utility of the technique.The editors of this distinguished series are Martin J. New methods of dating artifacts and archaeological contexts have developed rapidly since the so-called "radiocarbon revolution" which took place shortly after the Second World War.The editors recognize that because of the increasing complexity of many of the dating techniques, it is no longer possible for one or even a few authors to assemble and assess adequately the ever-increasing literature and the current directions of research for more than one or two of the techniques.The review you are about to read comes to you courtesy of H-Net -- its reviewers, review editors, and publishing staff.If you appreciate this service, please consider donating to H-Net so we can continue to provide this service free of charge. Translate this review into As a practicing archaeologist who has been cross trained in several of the physical sciences and taught archaeological field methods and laboratory analyses at the university level, I approached an assessment of this work with great anticipation and, at the same time, hesitant caution.
This group of outstanding international scholars includes an Australian, two Canadians, one Indian, one New Zealander, two authors from the United Kingdom, and 12 contributors from the United States.
Chronometric Dating for the Archaeologist isn't bedtime reading, nor is it for the faint-of-heart, but at the same time one does not have to have a background in materials science or organic or inorganic chemistry to understand the basic premise of the work.
The editors' goal is to present a factual, current, and well-documented evaluation of a dozen of the major techniques that are used by scientists to determine chronology from archaeological artifacts or contexts.
The individual presentations, in the main, follow a chronological progression, beginning with those techniques developed earliest and concluding with those more recently developed.
The first contribution is on "Climatostratigraphy" and considers varve analysis and marine sediment and ice core studies used to discern past climatic history and chronology.