Archaeologists working on late antique sites have t spent eugh time thinking about methodology. Their focus has been on recovering and cataloguing evidence, or on the study of specific historical problems. Digging has often been more important than publishing, which has rarely extended beyond the basic summaries found in preliminary reports. The re-emergence of clearance excavation, fuelled by the demands of tourism, has further reduced the value of urban excavations in the East Mediterranean. Here, late antique levels have suffered, in the hunt for photogenic early imperial architecture. This volume attempts to address this situation by offering a critique of present practice and a series of exemplars, alongside discussion articles on field technique and post-excavation analysis. The articles ranges from urban survey to the study of finds. The book also considers if we need to develop specific field methods appropriate to the study of late antiquity. Contributors are John Bintliff, Jeremy Evans, Axel Gering, Stefan Groh, Yoshiki Hori, Nikolaos D. Karydis, Veli Kose, Luke Lavan, Zsolt Magyar, Philip Mills, John Pearce, Steve Roskams, Helga Sedlmayer, Ellen Swift, Itamar Taxel, Douglas Underwood, Lutgarde Vandeput and Joe Williams.
Luke Lavan is Lecturer in Archaeology at the University of Kent, Canterbury, where he co-ordinates the Centre for Late Antique Archaeology. His doctorate (2001) considered Provincial Capitals in Late Antiquity. He is managing editor of Late Antique Archaeology and directed the Kent section of Kent-Berlin Late Antique Ostia Project 2008-2012. Michael Mulryan is is Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Kent and is Volume Editor of the Late Antique Archaeology journal series. His doctorate (UCL 2008) looked at the spatial impact of religious buildings in late antique Rome. His monograph Spatial 'Christianisation' in Context: Strategic Intramural Building in Rome from the 4th-7th c. A.D. (2014) refines this question. He specialises in the religious topography of the late antique city in the West.