5. Results

The results presented here are intended to illustrate how GIS technologies can make a contribution to analysis of legacy data. This article focuses on a restricted number of elements of dress rather than offering a comprehensive social analysis.

5.1 Chronology

The first consideration in examining spatial distribution is horizontal stratigraphy. The layout of a cemetery is never random, but before social determinants such as kinship or status can be considered, we need to identify any growth patterns that are a function of time. Figure 6 clearly indicates eastwards expansion: the earliest burials are predominantly in the western part of the largest burial area, and move clearly eastwards as the cemetery expands. This is not, however, a simple linear progression: the intrusion of later burials in the east and earlier ones in the west suggests that the layout of the cemetery was determined by factors beyond spatial pressure shifting through time. Indeed, a greater complexity to the general layout of the cemetery was recognised by Bietti Sestieri (1992b, 141-61), who identified 13 discrete clusters within the Phase II part of the cemetery. On the basis of chronology, sex and age of the deceased, and stylistic patterning in grave goods, she argues that these clusters represent extended families (Bietti Sestieri 1992b, 146).

Despite broad patterning, these clusters do not each represent a discrete chronological unit. Cluster 165-193, for example, has a total of 19 burials (see Tables 1-3). Chronologically, these range from early Phase IIA to the final part of IIB (approximately 900-770 BCE), the latest phase represented by a single burial, burial 181. This burial's closest chronological neighbours within the cluster are six burials dated to late Phase IIA, representing a gap of between 50 to 100 years. Such a hiatus is difficult to explain if the cluster represents an extended family plot. However, the cluster was extensively damaged and other burials from late Phase IIB were conceivably destroyed. Bietti Sestieri (1992b, 166) suggests the missing western section might also have contained the burials of the conspicuously under-represented young adult and adult burials. The North cluster, however, is apparently intact, and several anomalies are immediately noticeable. This cluster is examined in detail in Section 5.2.


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