An archaeogeomorphological approach applied in the study of a Chalcolithic civilization from northeastern Romania

Ionut Cristi Nicu

“Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University of Iasi, Interdisciplinary Research Department—Field Science, Archeoinvest Platform, St. Lascar Catargi 54, 700107, Iasi, Romania
Department of Archaeology, Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia

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Dig It: The Journal of the Flinders Archaeological Society

Volume 3, May 2016

Print: ISSN 1440-2475
Online: ISSN 2203-1898


The theme approached in this paper is based on interdisciplinary information from disciplines such as geography (cartography, geology, geomorphology, climatology, and hydrology), history and biology. Interdisciplinary investigations were conducted in the Valea Oii watershed area of Romania, by teams that consisted of archaeologists and geographers. The aim was to map the Chalcolithic (5500–3000 BC) archaeological sites found in archaeological repertoires, and also to discover new ones. This interdisciplinary approach allowed the application of methods and techniques used in geography, such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS), to archaeological research, and resulted in a detailed and shared database regarding the location of archaeological sites and the geographical background of those sites, especially the geological evolution and landforms (plateaus, cuestas, gullies, and landslides). Over time, humans, or human communities, moved and placed their settlements depending on changing natural factors—for example, climate fluctuations (colder periods alternated with warmer ones), the appearance of new hydrological resources like springs formed as a consequence of landslides, or the disappearance of forests as a consequence of overexploitation; combining archaeological and geographical information is important as the human-environment relationship is interdependent, with humans or human communities taking into account, with or without their will, the characteristics of the environment when settling an area.


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