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The Archaeology of Measurement
Comprehending Heaven, Earth and Time in Ancient Societies

£67.00

  • Editors:
  • Iain Morley, The MacDonald Institute for Archaeological Research
  • Colin Renfrew, The MacDonald Institute for Archaeological Research
Colin Renfrew, Iain Morley, Helen Farr, Denis Schmadt-Besserat, Lambros Malafouris, John Justeson, Gary Urton, Anna Michailidou, Lorenz Rahmstorf, J. Mark Kenoyer, Michael Jansen, Saburu Sugiyama, John Clark, Kate Spence, David Brown, Mark Lewis, Anthony Aveni, Charles Stanish, Peter Biehl, F. LeRon Shults, Jeremy Begbie
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  • Date Published: June 2010
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521119900
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About the Authors
  • The construction of formal measurement systems underlies the development of science, technology, economy and new ways of understanding and explaining the world. Human societies have developed such systems in different ways, in different places and at different times, and recent archaeological investigations highlight the importance of these activities for fundamental aspects of human life. Measurement systems have provided the structure for addressing key concerns of cosmological belief systems, as well as the means for articulating relationships between the human form, human action, and the world. The Archaeology of Measurement explores the archaeological evidence for the development of measuring activities in numerous ancient societies, as well as the implications of these discoveries for an understanding of their worlds and beliefs. Featuring contributions from a cast of internationally renowned scholars, it analyses the relationships between measurement, economy, architecture, symbolism, time, cosmology, ritual, and religion among prehistoric and early historic societies.

    • Explores the archaeological evidence for the development of measuring activities in numerous ancient societies and the implications of these discoveries
    • Featuring contributions from a cast of internationally renowned scholars
    • Analyses the relationships between measurement, economy, architecture, symbolism, time, cosmology, ritual, and religion among prehistoric and early historic societies
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    Customer reviews

    28th May 2019 by TTyy2222

    This book discusses the origin of human writing and the development of Western writing. It is very well written.

    Review was not posted due to profanity

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    Product details

    • Date Published: June 2010
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521119900
    • length: 284 pages
    • dimensions: 286 x 220 x 17 mm
    • weight: 1.02kg
    • contains: 130 b/w illus. 17 maps 19 tables
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction Colin Renfrew and Iain Morley
    Part I. Number: Counting, Mathematics, and Measure:
    1. Conceptualising quantification before settlement: activities and issues underlying the conception and use of measurement Iain Morley
    2. Measurement in navigation: conceiving distance and time in the Neolithic Helen Farr
    3. The token system of the ancient Near East: its role in counting, writing, the economy and cognition Denise Schmandt-Besserat
    4. Grasping the concept of number: how did the sapient mind move beyond approximation? Lambros Malafouris
    5. Numerical cognition and the development of 'zero' in Mesoamerica John Justeson
    6. Recording measure(ment)s in the Inka Khipu Gary Urton
    Part II. Materialising the Economy:
    7. Measuring by weight in the late Bronze Age Aegean: the people behind the measuring tools Anna Michailidou
    8. The concept of weighing during the Bronze Age in the Aegean, the Near East and Europe Lorenz Rahmstorf
    9. Measuring the Harappan world: insights into the Indus order and cosmology J. Mark Kenoyer
    Part III. Dimensions and Belief:
    10. Architectural measurements in the Indus cities: the case study of Mohenjo-Daro Michael Jansen
    11. Teothuacan City layout as a cosmogram: preliminary results of the 2007 measurement unit study Saburu Sugiyama
    12. Aztec dimensions of holiness John Clark
    13. Establishing direction in early Egyptian burials and monumental architecture: measurement and the spatial link with the 'other' Kate Spence
    Part IV. Calendar and Cosmology:
    14. The measurement of time and distance in the heavens above Mesopotamia, with brief reference made to other ancient astral sciences David Brown
    15. Evolution of the calendar in Shang China Mark Lewis
    16. The measure of time in Meso-America: from Teotihuacan to the Maya Anthony Aveni
    17. Measuring time, sacred space, and social place in the Inca Empire Charles Stanish
    18. Measuring time in the European Neolithic? The function and meaning of Central European circular enclosures Peter Biehl
    Part V. The Spirituality of Measure:
    19. The roots of spirituality and the limits of human mensuration F. LeRon Shults
    20. Worldview, measurement and 'the roots of spirituality' Jeremy Begbie.

  • Instructors have used or reviewed this title for the following courses

    • Archaeological Lab Methods
    • Cultural Astronomy
    • Fallen Temples & Forgotten Gods: Cultural Geography of Ancient Religions
  • Editors

    Iain Morley, The MacDonald Institute for Archaeological Research
    Iain Morley is a Fellow of the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research and Research Fellow of Darwin College at Cambridge University. A scholar of Palaeolithic archaeology and the evolution of human cognition, he is also co-editor, with Colin Renfrew, of Becoming Human: Innovation in Prehistoric Material and Spiritual Culture and Image and Imagination: A Global Prehistory of Figurative Representation.

    Colin Renfrew, The MacDonald Institute for Archaeological Research
    Colin Renfrew (Lord Renfrew of Kaimsthorn) is Emeritus Disney Professor of Archaeology at Cambridge University, where he is a Senior Fellow of the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research. He is author of many influential books on archaeology and prehistory, including, with Paul Bahn, Archaeology: Theories, Methods and Practice, which is one of the standard textbooks on the subject.

    Contributors

    Colin Renfrew, Iain Morley, Helen Farr, Denis Schmadt-Besserat, Lambros Malafouris, John Justeson, Gary Urton, Anna Michailidou, Lorenz Rahmstorf, J. Mark Kenoyer, Michael Jansen, Saburu Sugiyama, John Clark, Kate Spence, David Brown, Mark Lewis, Anthony Aveni, Charles Stanish, Peter Biehl, F. LeRon Shults, Jeremy Begbie

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