Archaeomagnetic direction and archaeointensity dating are regional pattern-matching techniques, whereas magnetic reversal dating is a global pattern-matching method.Secular variation dating using archaeomagnetic directions and archaeointensities has been used for Neolithic and younger cultures.While Andy has been looking at some of the oldest rocks on Earth, some of us have been concentrating on more recent history.Studying the Earth’s magnetic field by the remanent magnetisation of archaeological artefacts is called .
Archaeomagnetically, we think it’s probably from the 9 C.
This one was in Mildenhall, Suffolk, where excavations were being carried out prior to the building of a new supermarket.
It’s a circular feature , about 2m across, with flints and river pebbles forming the edge, but it’s not clear what it was used for.
Directional dating can sometimes be as good as ±25 years.
Magnetic reversal stratigraphy has been useful in dating hominid sites for paleoanthropologists, with precisions of about ±0.01 Ma, or 10 ka.
Besides reviewing the basic principles of these methods, this article describes a number of applications, emphasizing explication of the method and solution of particular archaeological problems.