The Ayl to Ras an-Naqab Archaeological Survey, Southern Jordan 2005-2007

The Ayl to Ras an-Naqab Archaeological Survey, Southern Jordan 2005-2007

Burton MacDonald
Larry G. Herr
D. Scott Quaintance
Geoffrey A. Clark
Michael C. A. Macdonald
Volume: 16
Copyright Date: 2012
Pages: 552
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.5615/j.ctt2jc9nf
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  • Book Info
    The Ayl to Ras an-Naqab Archaeological Survey, Southern Jordan 2005-2007
    Book Description:

    Presented here are the results of the ARNAS project - a systematic survey of the southern segment of the Transjordanian Plateau, that is, the Edomite Plateau. Encompassing the region from the village of Ayl in the north to the edge of the escarpment at Ras an-Naqab in the south, members of the ARNAS team investigated the settlement patterns of this region beginning with the Lower Paleolithic (ca. 1.4mya) and running up to the end of the Late Islamic period (AD 1918). Although segments of the ARNAS territory have been investigated for the past one hundred years, a comprehensive and systematic survey of the area had never been undertaken prior to the work of the ARNAS team members. The main goal of the project was to discover, record, and interpret archaeological sites within the survey territory. Some other objectives included: the discovery, on the basis of the artifactual material identified, the area's a study of surface trends to determine, on the basis of the number of sites and the amount of lithics and/or sherds collected, where in the territory "settlements" were concentrated in antiquity; an investigation of the Khatt Shabib or "Shabib's Wall," a low stone wall running in a generally north-south direction to the east, ca. 5-10 km, of the Via Nova Traiana (Trajan's road built between AD 111-114); and to document the rock art, tribal markings, and inscriptional material of the region. ARNAS team members accomplished the objectives of the project by transecting and recording the archaeological remains found in 140 randomly-chosen squares (500 x 500 m), covering around five percent of each of the three topographical zones of the survey territory. This resulted in a statistically valid sample of the archaeological materials of the area. In addition, team members recorded 389 archaeological sites encountered within, adjacent to, or on their way to-from the squares. Lithic archaeological periods/cultural-temporal units represented in the survey territory are: Lower Paleolithic; Lower Paleolithic/Middle Paleolithic; Middle Paleolithic; Middle Paleolithic/Upper Paleolithic; Upper Paleolithic; Upper Paleolithic/Epipaleolithic; Epipaleolithic; Pre-Pottery Neolithic; and Chalolithic/Early Bronze I. As is often the case in the deflated landscapes of Jordan, Middle Paleolithic and Middle/Upper Paleolithic combined samples are the most prevalent lithic analytical units identified in the survey. Ceramic archaeological periods/cultural-temporal units represented in the survey territory are: Chalcolithic-Early Bronze; Iron II; Nabataean; Roman; Byzantine; and Late Islamic. In addition, sherds, in small numbers and at only a few sites, from the Late Bronze, Iron I, Hellenistic, Early Islamic, and Middle Islamic are also represented. The types of sites recorded include: agriculture villages or hamlets; aqueducts; camps -probably seasonal and pastoralists; caves; cemeteries and individual tombs/graves; check dams and terraces; cisterns; farms; forts; inscriptions; knapping areas; lithic and sherd scatters; milestones; reservoirs; roads; rock art and/or tribal markings; walls; watchtowers; water catchment facilities; and winnowing areas.

    eISBN: 978-0-89757-012-1
    Subjects: Archaeology, History

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. List of Illustrations
    (pp. vii-viii)
  4. List of Tables
    (pp. viii-ix)
  5. List of Lithic Drawings
    (pp. ix-xii)
  6. Acknowledgements
    (pp. xiii-xiv)
  7. Abbreviations and Symbols
    (pp. xv-xvi)
  8. Archaeological Periods and Dates
    (pp. xvi-xvi)
  9. VOLUME 1
    • Chapter 1 Introduction
      (pp. 1-26)
      Burton MacDonald

      The main goal of “The Ayl to Ras an-Naqab Archaeological Survey, Southern Jordan” (ARNAS) project was to discover, record, and interpret archaeological sites within an area of approximately 860 square kilometers. The area of investigation is part of the southern segment of the Transjordanian Plateau, that is, the Edomite Plateau, in the region from the village of Ayl in the north to Ras an-Naqab in the south, from the edge of the escarpment in the west, and into the Jordanian desert on the east (fig. 1.1). This is an area of ca. 25.5 km (north–south) by ca. 39 km...

    • Chapter 2 Site Descriptions — 1–389
      (pp. 27-319)
      Burton MacDonald, Larry G. Herr, D. Scott Quaintance and Geoffrey A. Clark

      As indicated in Chapter 1, ARNAS team members recorded 389 sites during their three seasons of infield work: 1–209 (2005), 210–324 (2006), and 325–89 (2007) (see fig. 1.1 and Table 1.2). While we surveyed sites in all three topographical zones of the survey territory, the majority of them are located in Zone 2, the most agriculturally-friendly area. As indicated in Chapter 1, these sites range from lithic and sherd scatters to major architectural ones (see Table 1.4). A large number of them have to do with agriculture and/or pastoralism.

      In year one, we investigated the central segment...

  10. VOLUME 2
    • Chapter 3 Random Square Descriptions — Topographical Zones 1, 2, and 3
      (pp. 321-390)
      Burton MacDonald, Larry G. Herr, D. Scott Quaintance and Geoffrey A. Clark

      As seen in figure 1.2 (see page 6), there are 141 random squares in the three topographical zones of the survey territory. These random squares — 28 in Zone 1, 25 in Zone 2, and 88 in Zone 3 — comprise about five percent of the territory within each zone. We were able to transect all the squares in Zones 2 and 3. However, due to the ruggedness of the terrain and for matters of safety, we transected only parts of Random Squares 41, 55, 61, 107, and 108 and none of 73 in Zone 1 (see Table 1.1).

      A...

    • Chapter 4 The ARNAS Paleolithic Collections in Regional Context
      (pp. 391-416)
      Geoffrey A. Clark

      Evidence of a human presence in the Levant is confined to the Pleistocene, a geological epoch usually divided into Basal (ca. 1.7–1.0 mya), Lower (ca. 1.0 mya–800 kya), Middle (ca. 800–130 kya) and Upper (ca. 130–12 kya) parts. The corresponding divisions of the Old Stone Age are the Lower Paleolithic (ca. 1.4 mya–250 kya), Middle Paleolithic (ca. 250–40 kya), and Upper Paleolithic (<40–20 kya BP). In terms of the Alpine chronology, based on European continental geomorphology and now largely supplanted by a global oxygen isotope marine paleotemperature curve, the end of the penultimate...

    • Chapter 5 Settlement Patterns Developed on the Basis of the Ceramics Collected at the ARNAS Random Squares and Sites
      (pp. 417-432)
      Burton MacDonald

      The production of settlement pattern maps for the various archaeological periods or cultural-temporal units based on the ceramics collected in the survey territory is the result of the analysis of the 17,948 sherds that survey-team members collected from the random squares transected (n=140) and the sites (n=389) recorded. (However, for various reasons, we did not collect sherds from every random square and site of the survey.) Of the total number of sherds collected, we registered 4,401, or 24.52%. These registered sherds, often referred to as “indicators,” were rims, handles, bases, and painted and/or decorated ones (see Appendix 5, “Pottery Registration”)....

    • Chapter 6 Inscriptions, Rock Drawings and wusūm from the Ayl to Ras an-Naqab Archaeological Survey
      (pp. 433-466)
      Michael C. A. Macdonald

      This report on the inscriptions, rock art, and wusūm (tribal marks) found on “The Ayl to Ras an-Naqab Archaeological Survey” (ARNAS) is based on the photographs kindly sent to me by Professor Burton MacDonald. I have not been able to examine the originals, and occasionally this has meant that I have had to mark as uncertain or unreadable letters which might well be legible on the stone itself.¹

      In this report, I often use differences in patina to distinguish one carving from another on the same rock face, but I deliberately do not associate this with relative differences in date....

    • Chapter 7 Summary and Conclusions
      (pp. 467-478)
      Burton MacDonald

      This final chapter will look at the objectives of the ARNAS project and show how they have been realized. It will summarize information obtained relative to the Khatt Shabib (ARNAS Site 050) and look at the relationship, from a food-source perspective, of the survey territory and the major site of Petra, located just to the north. It will also look at possible routes through the survey territory. In addition, it will use the data from this and the other three survey projects that I have carried out in the area from Wadi al-Hasa in the north to Ras an-Naqab in...

  11. Appendix 1 Sites 001–209 with WGS 1984 Coordinates
    (pp. 479-483)
  12. Appendix 2 Random Square Coordinates
    (pp. 483-495)
  13. Appendix 3 Publications to Date
    (pp. 495-496)
  14. Appendix 4 Lithic Registration
    (pp. 496-498)
  15. Appendix 5 Pottery Registration
    (pp. 499-503)
  16. Appendix 6 Material Culture
    (pp. 504-504)
  17. Appendix 7 Cultural-Temporal Units Represented at ARNAS Sites 1–389
    (pp. 505-516)
  18. References
    (pp. 517-531)
  19. Contributors
    (pp. 532-532)
  20. Indices
    (pp. 533-536)