Alexandru MORINTZ

(“Vasile Parvan” Institute of Archaeology, Bucharest, Romania)

Purpose and Methodology/Approach: The spatial determination of discoveries is one element that must never be neglected during archaeological research. A pertinent analysis of the discoveries cannot be done without knowing three spatial elements: macro or external (the position of the discovery in the context of other contemporary discoveries in the area), micro or internal (the dimensions and the structure of the discovery) and the environmental characteristics of the area (relief, climate, water sources and other resources). We chose for case study an archaeological site investigated five decades ago. The site is, at the present moment, completely destroyed due to the Danube’s erosion and to human actions. Thus, it is impossible to conduct new field research in order to obtain new spatial data and information. Therefore, we must limit ourselves only to the observations made during the initial research. In these cases, one can turn to the digitization of some maps of the area that present the configuration of the terrain from a moment prior to the destructions and modifications. But sometimes problems appear during the process. What do we do if for a part of the site we know the configuration of the terrain (collapsing land due to river erosion) but we do not have numerical values to introduce in the spatial database? What do we do if we know that the site is located on a slope, we have the detailed plan of the sections but we don’t know the excavation method so as to place in a precise manner the 2D drawing on a 3D representation of the site? To these questions, we try to find an answer. Can the return to the basics help us in this type of enterprise?

Keywords: spatial data, database, old excavation, digitization, basic trigonometry