Encyclopedia of Archaeology
History and Discoveries [3 volumes]
by Tim Murray, Editor
June 2001, 1500pp, 7x10
3 volumes, ABC-CLIO

Hardcover: 978-1-57607-198-4
$330, £254, 287€, A453
eBook Available: 978-1-57607-577-7
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

As new civilizations have been unearthed, languages have been deciphered, and the antiquity of human life has been extended to almost unimaginable depths. Yet there remains a core belief that only archaeology can reveal the evidence of the whole human story from prehistoric to historical times.

Written by the most authoritative scholars from around the world, a massive treasurehouse of information on all aspects of archaeology, from prehistory to the present day.

Encyclopedia of Archaeology: History and Discoveries explores the archaeologists, sites, debates, techniques, methods, and issues that are central to the global practice of archaeology. Three richly illustrated volumes trace the development of the field from the ancient Greeks to the present day. Through detailed tours of major excavation sites from all over the world—Chichen Itza, Machu Picchu, Ephesus, Pompeii, the tomb of Tutankhamun—as well as more obscure sites like Brzesc Kujawski in Poland, readers gain an appreciation for the inherent challenges all archeologists share in locating, recovering and making sense of evidence of past human lives.

The Histories and Discoveries volumes profile significant archaeologists, such as the indefatigable Gertrude Bell, an expert on Arab affairs during World War I and Iraq’s director of antiquities in the 1920s. Additional entries ranging from the Dead Sea scrolls and rock art to techniques like dating and remote sensing round out this watershed in the history of archaeology.


  • Includes 500+ A–Z entries on pioneers such as J. Desmond Clark, sites including Chichén Itzá in Mexico, remote sensing and other concepts and techniques, periods, regions, organizations, and museums
  • Contributors include some of the world's most eminent archaeologists
  • Includes maps depicting key points of reference like ethnic groups in the West Indies at the time of Columbus
  • Contains photographs of excavation sites such as an ancient burial ground in Chile, shields, petroglyphs, and other artifacts
Tim Murray is professor of archaeology at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. He has published over 12 books and is editor of the Bulletin of the History of Archaeology.


Outstanding Reference Source 2002—RUSA/ALA, December 31, 2002

Best Reference Book 2002—Independent Publisher Association, December 31, 2002


"This three-volume work bridges a long-existing gap by successfully filling the space between scholarly and popular coverage."—American Libraries, May 1, 2002

"Maintaining both the format and level of excellence of its predecessor . . . additional contributors have produced a work that includes much more than just entries about archaeological sites. . . . This highly recommended work provides high-quality information in a manner that is accessible to the average reader and should be considered for purchase by all public and academic libraries."—American Reference Books Annual, January 1, 2002

"Essential reference tools for the history of anthropology in both general and research libraries."—Library Journal, September 1, 2001

"Libraries that purchased The Great Archaeologists will certainly want to add History and Discoveries to their collections."—Booklist, October 1, 2001

"This reference source would be useful in a high school or college library for students doing research; the list of reference sources at the end of each article could be used to find additional information on a particular topic."—Top of Texas Reviews, January 1, 2002
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