Thursday, January 17, 2008

Pot Drop

Sometime between AD 1000 and probably 1700 a Native American traveling through our project area somehow dropped and broke this ceramic jar.

The climate being what it is in this desert, artifact distributions like this can remain undisturbed for hundreds of years. We refer to situations where the broken sherds stay together on the ground surface using the artful term "pot drop." You have to be careful with these and make sure the sherds are all of a type as modern artifact collectors will sometimes put sherds they have picked up from a site in piles that resemble a pot drop.

The recurved rim on this jar is the diagnostic clue that tells us it dates from either the Patayan II or III time period giving the date range I cited above.


mdmnm said...

Very cool! Are the differences in color of the shards due to firing or a glaze on the outside?

Reid Farmer said...

From uneven and differential heat in firing. These people didn't develop glazes but did use slips of different color clay sometimes. A reddish clay slip is common in this area.

mdmnm said...

Thanks, Reid.