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Archaeology The history of past cultures has been a fascinating topic of debate and discovery for hundreds of years From the discoveries of fossilized elephant bones leading to the legends of the gigantic Cyclops to the modern day discoveries of the remains of ancient Mayan temples and the shaman that lived there archaeologists have been bringing the facts back to life Man has of course always been interested in the question of his origin and as prehistoric remains so often lie near the earth s surface especially flints and stones- they had not escaped the notice of our ancestors Eydoux 9 These clues about the past lead to interest and eventually serious inquiry as to their origins Archaeology is the study of past human culture and activities from the beginnings of human population to the present These human behaviors of the past are studied through examination of the physical remains of past human civilizations The archaeologist does not observe human behavior and culture directly but reconstructs them from material remains pottery tools garbage ruins of buildings and whatever else a society has left behind Nanda and Warms 4 Archaeology is an important field of anthropology Anthropology is the study of human culture and biology mainly in the present day sense Archaeologists focus on the study and reconstruction of past communities and the eventual changes experienced by those societies over long periods of time The immense stock of information can be found in any area of the world that is or has been occupied by humans Through the use of careful field excavations and laboratory scrutiny archaeologists can piece together the story of the lives of that group of people Unfortunately time is of the essence Many of the remains of the civilization can disappear through weathering and erosion vegetative overgrowth and being buried under eons of dirt layers The bits of information that have survived the millennia have done so under positive preservative conditions The
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