Artifact (archaeology)

artifactsartifactartefactsartefactarchaeological artifactsarchaeological artifactarchaeological findsarchaeological findcultural artefactantiquities
An artifact, or artefact (see [[American and British English spelling differences#Miscellaneous spelling differences|American and British English spelling differences]]), is something made or given shape by humans, such as a tool or a work of art, especially an object of archaeological interest.wikipedia
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Archaeology

archaeologistarchaeologicalarchaeologists
In archaeology, however, the word has become a term of particular nuance and is defined as: an object recovered by archaeological endeavor, which may be a cultural artifact having cultural interest.
The archaeological record consists of artifacts, architecture, biofacts or ecofacts and cultural landscapes.

Archaeological culture

cultureculturesmaterial culture
In archaeology, however, the word has become a term of particular nuance and is defined as: an object recovered by archaeological endeavor, which may be a cultural artifact having cultural interest.
An archaeological culture is a recurring assemblage of artifacts from a specific time and place that may constitute the material culture remains of a particular past human society.

Button

buttonsbutton-upcloth buttons
Examples include stone tools, pottery vessels, metal objects such as weapons, and items of personal adornment such as buttons, jewelry and clothing.
In archaeology, a button can be a significant artifact.

Jewellery

jewelryjewelledjeweler
Examples include stone tools, pottery vessels, metal objects such as weapons, and items of personal adornment such as buttons, jewelry and clothing.
It is one of the oldest type of archaeological artefact – with 100,000-year-old beads made from Nassarius shells thought to be the oldest known jewellery.

Cultural artifact

artifactsartifactcultural artifacts
In archaeology, however, the word has become a term of particular nuance and is defined as: an object recovered by archaeological endeavor, which may be a cultural artifact having cultural interest.
Archeologists, the people who mostly find or describe older artifacts, generally just use the term artifact.

Material culture

materialmaterial culture studiesTangible folk art
However, modern archaeologists take care to distinguish material culture from ethnicity, which is often more complex, as expressed by Carol Kramer in the dictum "pots are not people".
An archaeological culture is a recurring assemblage of the artifacts from a specific time and place, most often that has no written record.

Pottery

potterceramicspotters
Examples include stone tools, pottery vessels, metal objects such as weapons, and items of personal adornment such as buttons, jewelry and clothing.
Therefore, much of this history can only be found among the artifacts of archaeology.

Feature (archaeology)

featuresfeaturearchaeological features
Artifacts are distinguished from the main body of the archaeological record such as stratigraphic features, which are non-portable remains of human activity, such as hearths, roads, deposits, trenches or similar remains, and from biofacts or ecofacts, which are objects of archaeological interest made by other organisms, such as seeds or animal bone.
Features are distinguished from artifacts in that they cannot be separated from their location without changing their form.

Biofact (archaeology)

ecofactbiofactecofacts
Artifacts are distinguished from the main body of the archaeological record such as stratigraphic features, which are non-portable remains of human activity, such as hearths, roads, deposits, trenches or similar remains, and from biofacts or ecofacts, which are objects of archaeological interest made by other organisms, such as seeds or animal bone. Natural objects, such as fire cracked rocks from a hearth or plant material used for food, are classified by archeologists as ecofacts rather than as artifacts.
Biofacts are natural objects found alongside artifacts or features, such as animal bones, charcoal, plants, and pollen.

Hoard

coin hoardhoardscache
A hoard or "wealth deposit" is an archaeological term for a collection of valuable objects or artifacts, sometimes purposely buried in the ground, in which case it is sometimes also known as a cache.

Midden

shell middenmiddensshell middens
A midden (also kitchen midden or shell heap) is an old dump for domestic waste which may consist of animal bone, human excrement, botanical material, mollusc shells, sherds, lithics (especially debitage), and other artifacts and ecofacts associated with past human occupation.

Votive offering

votivevotive offeringsvotive deposit
High status artifacts such as armor and weaponry (mostly shields, swords, spears and arrows), fertility and cult symbols, coins, various treasures and animals (often dogs, oxen and in later periods horses) were common offerings in antiquity.

Geofact

geofacts
It can be difficult to distinguish the differences between actual man-made lithic artifacts and geofacts – naturally occurring lithics that resemble man-made tools.
A geofact (a portmanteau of "geology" and "artifact") is a natural stone formation that is difficult to distinguish from a man-made artifact.

American and British English spelling differences

spelling differencesorsee spelling differences
An artifact, or artefact (see [[American and British English spelling differences#Miscellaneous spelling differences|American and British English spelling differences]]), is something made or given shape by humans, such as a tool or a work of art, especially an object of archaeological interest.

Ethnic group

ethnicityethnicethnic groups
However, modern archaeologists take care to distinguish material culture from ethnicity, which is often more complex, as expressed by Carol Kramer in the dictum "pots are not people".

Stone tool

stone toolslithicstone axe
Examples include stone tools, pottery vessels, metal objects such as weapons, and items of personal adornment such as buttons, jewelry and clothing. It can be difficult to distinguish the differences between actual man-made lithic artifacts and geofacts – naturally occurring lithics that resemble man-made tools.

Bone

cortical bonebone tissuecancellous bone
Artifacts are distinguished from the main body of the archaeological record such as stratigraphic features, which are non-portable remains of human activity, such as hearths, roads, deposits, trenches or similar remains, and from biofacts or ecofacts, which are objects of archaeological interest made by other organisms, such as seeds or animal bone. Bones that show signs of human modification are also examples.

Hearth

hearthsHearth Taxforge
Artifacts are distinguished from the main body of the archaeological record such as stratigraphic features, which are non-portable remains of human activity, such as hearths, roads, deposits, trenches or similar remains, and from biofacts or ecofacts, which are objects of archaeological interest made by other organisms, such as seeds or animal bone. Natural objects, such as fire cracked rocks from a hearth or plant material used for food, are classified by archeologists as ecofacts rather than as artifacts.

Glossary of archaeology

sherdpotsherdspotsherd
Artifacts can come from any archaeological context or source such as:

Stratigraphy (archaeology)

stratigraphystratificationstratigraphic
Artifacts are distinguished from the main body of the archaeological record such as stratigraphic features, which are non-portable remains of human activity, such as hearths, roads, deposits, trenches or similar remains, and from biofacts or ecofacts, which are objects of archaeological interest made by other organisms, such as seeds or animal bone.

Road

roadsroad constructionroad building
Artifacts are distinguished from the main body of the archaeological record such as stratigraphic features, which are non-portable remains of human activity, such as hearths, roads, deposits, trenches or similar remains, and from biofacts or ecofacts, which are objects of archaeological interest made by other organisms, such as seeds or animal bone.

Seed

seedsseed coatkernel
Artifacts are distinguished from the main body of the archaeological record such as stratigraphic features, which are non-portable remains of human activity, such as hearths, roads, deposits, trenches or similar remains, and from biofacts or ecofacts, which are objects of archaeological interest made by other organisms, such as seeds or animal bone.

Animal

Animaliaanimalsmetazoa
Artifacts are distinguished from the main body of the archaeological record such as stratigraphic features, which are non-portable remains of human activity, such as hearths, roads, deposits, trenches or similar remains, and from biofacts or ecofacts, which are objects of archaeological interest made by other organisms, such as seeds or animal bone.

Manuport

Natural objects that humans have moved but not changed are called manuports.