​​ We use cookies to enhance your experience on our site. By continuing to use the site you agree to our use of cookies. Privacy & Cookies.​

 
Archaeopress logo
Gordon House, 276 Banbury Road, Oxford OX2 7ED, England
tel +44 (0) 1865 311914 fax +44 (0) 1865 512231   email: info@archaeopress.com
Monthly AP Alert - join our mailing list today Archaeopress on Facebook Archaeopress on Twitter Archaeopress Site Hut

Search

title, author, ISBN, keyword

Browse for books in the following languages

ARCHAEOPRESS ARCHAEOLOGY
ACCESS ARCHAEOLOGY
ARCHAEOPRESS JOURNALS
POTINGAIR
PRESS
DIGITAL EDITIONS
OPEN ACCESS PLATFORM
Ordering Information
About Us
Publish With Us
Standing Orders
Trade Sales
Contact Us
Request Review Copy
FORTHCOMING: The Cutting Edge: Khoe-San rock-markings at the Gestoptefontein-Driekuil engraving complex, North West Province, South Africa by Jeremy Charles Hollmann. xx+394 pages; illustrated throughout in colour and black & white. 40 2017 Cambridge Monographs in African Archaeology 97. ISBN 9781784917036. £60.00 (No VAT). Book contents pageBuy Now

This book addresses the rock engravings on the wonderstone hills just outside Ottosdal, North West province, South Africa. Wonderstone is remarkable rock that is smooth, shiny and very easy to mark. The wonderstone occurs only on two adjacent farms, Gestoptefontein and Driekuil, and thus the rock art on the wonderstone outcrops is referred to as the Gestoptefontein- Driekuil complex (GDC). This rock art is now the only remaining trace of what must once have been a much larger complex of engravings. Sadly, much of the rock art has been destroyed in the course of mining activities, with very few records. The largest remaining outcrop is still threatened by potential mining activities. The study attempts to bring this disastrous and unacceptable situation to the attention of the public and the heritage authorities, who have so far failed to respond to applications to grant the sites protection. It therefore has two main aims: to locate and record as much of the rock art as possible and to understand the significance of the outcrops in the lives of the people who made them.

Based on the rock art itself, as well as what little historical evidence is available, it is argued that the rock art was made by Khoe-San people during the performance of important ceremonies and other activities. The rock art has two main components: engravings of referential motifs and a gestural, or performative, element. The referential motifs depict a range of things: anthropomorphs and zoomorphs, decorative designs, items of clothing, as well as ornaments and decorations. The gestural markings were made by rubbing, cutting and hammering the soft wonderstone, probably in the course of a range of activities that people carried out on the outcrops.
Le massif de Lovo, sur les traces du royaume de Kongo Volume 1 by Geoffroy Heimlich. xiv+196; illustrated throughout in colour and black & white with 76 plates in colour. French text. 500+ page annex volume available online as a free-to-download PDF. Available both in print and Open Access. Cambridge Monographs in African Archaeology 95. ISBN 9781784916343. £34.00 (No VAT). Book contents pageBuy Now

Unlike the Sahara or Southern Africa, the rock art of Central Africa is still largely unknown today. Despite being reported as early as the 16th century by Diego del Santissimo Sacramento, the rock art of the Kongo Central, an area encompassing parts of modern day Angola, Cabinda, the Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Gabon, has never been widely researched and its age remains uncertain.

Populated by the Ndibu, one of the Kongo subgroups, the Lovo massif is in the north of the ancient kingdom of Kongo. Even though this kingdom has, since 1500 AD, been one of the best documented in Africa, from historical sources as well as ethnographic and anthropological sources for the more recent periods, it remains largely unrecognized archaeologically. With 102 sites inventoried (including 16 ornate caves), it contains the largest concentration of rock art sites in the region, representing more than 5000 rock art images.

Crossing ethnological, historical, archaeological and mythological points of view, this book illustrates that rock art played an important part in Kongo culture. Like historical sources or oral traditions, it can provide historians with important documentation and contribute significantly to the reconstruction of Africa's past.

French description: À la différence des arts rupestres du Sahara ou d’Afrique australe, ceux d’Afrique centrale restent encore aujourd’hui largement méconnus. Bien que signalé dès le XVIe par Diego del Santissimo Sacramento, l’art rupestre du Kongo Central n’a jamais fait l’objet d’une recherche de grande ampleur et son âge reste toujours incertain. Peuplé par les Ndibu, un des sous-groupes kongo, le massif de Lovo se trouve dans le nord de l’ancien royaume de Kongo. Même si ce royaume est, à partir de 1500, l’un des mieux documentés de toute l’Afrique tant par les sources historiques que par les sources ethnographiques et anthropologiques pour les périodes plus récentes, il reste largement méconnu sur le plan archéologique. Avec 102 sites inventoriés (dont 16 grottes ornées), il contient la plus importante concentration de sites rupestres de toute la région, ce qui représente plus de 5000 images rupestres. En croisant les points de vue ethnologique, historique, archéologique et mythologique, j’ai pu montrer que l’art rupestre a bel et bien une part importante dans la culture kongo. Au même titre que les sources historiques ou les traditions orales, il peut apporter aux historiens une documentation de premier plan et contribuer à reconstruire le passé de l’Afrique.

Biographie: Expert au comité de l’ICOMOS pour l’art rupestre (CAR) et pour la gestion du patrimoine archéologique (ICAHM), Geoffroy Heimlich est docteur en archéologie auprès de l’Université Libre de Bruxelles et en histoire auprès de l’Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne. Sous la codirection de Pierre de Maret et Jean-Loïc Le Quellec, sa recherche doctorale a porté sur l’art rupestre du Kongo Central, en République démocratique du Congo. Il est actuellement chercheur associé, en France, à l’Institut des mondes africains (IMAF) et, en Belgique, au Centre de recherches en archéologie et patrimoine (CReA-Patrimoine) de l’Université Libre de Bruxelles et au Musée royal de l’Afrique centrale de Tervuren, ainsi qu’en Afrique du Sud, Honorary research fellow au Rock Art Research Institute de l’Université de Witwatersrand, à Johannesburg. Depuis 2016, il est également directeur de la mission archéologique « Lovo » du Ministère français des Affaires étrangères, en République démocratique du Congo et en Angola.

This book is also available to download in PDF format in our Open Access section.

Eastern Sudan in its Setting The archaeology of a region far from the Nile Valley by Andrea Manzo. viii+82 pages; illustrated throughout with 38 colour plates. Available both in print and Open Access. Cambridge Monographs in African Archaeology 94. ISBN 9781784915582. £25.00 (No VAT). Book contents pageBuy Now

Eastern Sudan, like other regions far away from the Nile valley, has often been overlooked historically on account of a kind of prejudice towards areas lacking in monumental or urban remains or evidence of any literary production. Despite the relevance of the deserts and marginal areas becoming increasingly evident in the last year or so, in Sudan only a few research projects have been conducted in these regions. The ongoing research project in Eastern Sudan by the University ‘L’Orientale’ has provided a preliminary reconstruction of the history of the region from c. 6000 BC to AD 1500. This publication outlines this reconstruction and also considers the more general setting known for the other regions of northeastern Africa. Several issues remain to be clarified and understanding of some phases is still limited, nevertheless it can be safely stated that Eastern Sudan, was in ancient times, as it is now, a crossroads between the Nile basin, Eastern Desert, the Ethio-Eritrean highlands and the Red Sea, represented a crucial region in several respects: the spread of domestic crops and animals towards the Ethio-Eritrean highlands, the spread of the Sahelian crops towards India via the Red Sea and Arabia, as well as the long-distance trade network characterizing northeastern Africa in the 3rd and 2nd millennia BC.

This book is also available to download in PDF format in our Open Access section.
Archival Theory, Chronology and Interpretation of Rock Art in the Western Cape, South Africa by Siyakha Mguni. vi+156 pages; illustrated throughout in colour and black & white. Available both in print and Open Access. Cambridge Monographs in African Archaeology 93. ISBN 9781784914462. £40.00 (No VAT). Book contents pageBuy Now

Since absolute dating of rock art is limited, relative chronologies remain useful in contextualising interpretations of ancient images. This book advocates the archival capacity of rock art and uses archival perspectives to analyse the chronology of paintings in order to formulate a framework for their historicised interpretations. The Western Cape painting sequence is customarily accepted to include the hunter-gatherer phase from c. 10,000 BP, pastoralism from c. 2,000 BP and finally the historical-cum-colonial period several centuries ago. Painting traditions with distinct depiction manners and content are conventionally linked to these broad periods. This study evaluates this schema in order to refine the diverse hunter-gatherer, herder and colonial era painting contexts and histories. Using superimpositions as one analytical tool, the notion of datum aided the referencing and correlation of layered imagery into a relative sequence. Although broad differences separate painting traditions, and these variations are generally indistinguishable within a single tradition, it is clear that the long-spanning hunter-gatherer segment of painting in this region reflects a hitherto unrecognised sub-tradition. Some painted themes such as elephants, fat-tailed sheep, handprints and possibly finger dots occur within various levels of the sequence, which this study views as shared graphic fragments occurring between and across traditions and sub-traditions. Through the archival concept of respect des fonds such observable complexities were clarified as coherent graphic narratives that run through the entire chronological sequence of the Western Cape rock paintings. Probing archaeological, ethnographic and historical sources revealed that while these themes remained fundamentally consistent throughout the stratigraphic sequence as preferred subject matter, their meanings might have transformed subliminally from earlier to later periods, possibly reflecting layered shifts in the socio-economic, cultural and political circumstances of the region. Fundamentally, the framework of image histories shown by the choice and sustenance of specific themes is understood to mean that their significance and specific graphic contexts throughout the chronological sequence are pivoted and mirrored through the long established hunter-gatherer rock paintings which predate periods of contact with other cultures. The resulting sequence and interpretation of these painted themes is a descriptive and organisational template reflecting the original organic character in the creation of the paintings and ordered cultural continuities in the use of animal/human symbolism. This book’s agenda in part involves reviewing the Western Cape’s changing social and historical landscape to show variation in painting over time and to project possible interpretative transformations. Painting sequences and cultural (dis)continuities are thus intricately entwined and can be disentangled through a recursive analytical relationship between archaeology, ethnography and history. This amalgamated analytical approach produces historicised narratives and contextual meanings for the rock paintings.

This book is also available to download in PDF format in our Open Access section.
Reinterpreting chronology and society at the mortuary complex of Jebel Moya (Sudan) by Michael Jonathan Brass. xii+192 pages; illustrated throughout in colour and black & white. Available both in print and Open Access. Cambridge Monographs in African Archaeology 92. ISBN 9781784914318. £40.00 (No VAT). Book contents pageBuy Now

Jebel Moya (south-central Sudan) is the largest known pastoral cemetery in sub- Saharan Africa with more than 3100 excavated human burials. This research revises our understanding of Jebel Moya and its context. After reviewing previous applications of social complexity theory to mortuary data, new questions are posed for the applicability of such theory to pastoral cemeteries. Reliable radiometric dating of Jebel Moya for the first time by luminescence dates is tied in to an attribute-based approach to discern three distinctive pottery assemblages. Three distinct phases of occupation are recognised: the first two (early fifth millennium BC, and the mid-second to early first millennium BC) from pottery sherds, and the third (first century BC - sixth century AD) with habitation and the vast majority of the mortuary remains. Analytically, new statistical and spatial analyses such as cross-pair correlation function and multi-dimensional scaling provide information on zones of interaction across the mortuary assemblages. Finally, an analysis of mortuary locales contemporary with phase three (Meroitic and post-Meroitic periods) from the central Sudan and Upper and Lower Nubia are examined to show how changing social, economic and power relations were conceptualised, and to highlight Jebel Moya’s potential to serve as a chronological and cultural reference point for future studies in south-central and southern Sudan.

This book is also available to download in PDF format in our Open Access section.

Access Archaeology: Our newest imprint is designed to make archaeological research accessible to all and to present a low-cost (or no-cost) publishing solution for academics from all over the world. Material will range from theses, conference proceedings, catalogues of archaeological material, excavation reports and beyond. We will provide type-setting guidance and templates for authors to prepare material themselves designed to be made available for free online via our Open Access platform and to supply in-print to libraries and academics worldwide at a reasonable price point. Click here to learn more about publishing in Access Archaeology.

Le qṣar, type d’implantation humaine au Sahara: architecture du Sud Algérien by Mounia Chekhab-Abudaya. xiv+340 pages; illustrated throughout in black & white with 12 colour plates. French text with English abstract. 245 2016 Cambridge Monographs in African Archaeology 91. Available both in printed and e-versions. Printed ISBN 9781784913472. £50.00 (No VAT). Epublication ISBN 9781784913489. £19.00 (Inc. UK VAT) Book contents pageBuy Now

The qṣar corresponds to a type of human settlement widely distributed in the Sahara desert, including many examples located today in southern Morocco, southern Algeria, southern Tunisia, Libya, Mauritania and Mali. This architectural model is characterised by its use over a wide-ranging time span – probably since the early first millennium BC according to ancient structures recorded by the archaeologist Mattingly in the Libyan Fazzān.

This volume, through the systematic analysis and comparison of some qṣūr of southeastern Algeria (Rīġ, Mzāb, Miya and al-Manī‘a), reveals common architectural features that can be used to identify a common type of qṣar in this region. The analysis of the construction material shows the primary use of limestone with a local mortar (timchent) and date palm trunks (phoenix dactylifera) for the structural elements (ceilings, doors, arcs, domes). Adobe bricks (ṭūb) are used in the housing and the defence systems punctuated by towers and pierced doors.

Despite a discontinuity within the historical narrative, the establishment of populations in this area of the Sahara appears to be much earlier than the medieval period and the qṣar is certainly not a creation ex nihilo of the modern era. Because of their numerous modifications and extensions over several centuries, the qṣūr problematise the dating of such settlements. However, the comparison of its main components encourages the development of a typology to identify some common characteristics that would help position the qṣar among the urban planning of the dār al-islām.
end of results