Learning in Greece
This is a project blog communicating with students about my trip.
Janice Friesen
Information Technologist (IT)
Austin, TX

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People working at an Archaeological Dig
By Janice Friesen    July 16, 2007 -- 05:29 AM

Today I am going to show you a few of the people who are working here at Corinth and tell you about them.  There are people from all different levels of education here using the artifacts to help them learn and to publish.

Erica is not finished with her doctorate yet.  She is from Italy, but is studying in England.  She is working on getting her doctorate.  She is interested in Byzantine pottery. She said that a lot of the ancient pottery in Italy was imported from Corith.  If you look at a map you can see how close Greece and Italy are. She spends her time taking looking at, drawing and writing about pieces of pottery that have been found and are kept on the basement shelves in the museum.  

Julie is another person working here.  She is finished with her doctoral degree and is going to be starting a new job at a university in Michigan.   She just bought a Greek cell phone (American cell phones do not work in Greece) because she says that she will be bringing over students next year!  Maybe one of you will be her student and travel to Greece that way. One of her interests is looking at fingerprints on clay pots to learn about potters.  She actually studied fingerprints with the FBI! Donít be afraid that you have to have a doctoral degree to come and work here.  Many of the people who come here to learn are students who are learning to dig or in groups learning about the archaeological sites.

Another person here is Michael.  He is a professor at Bridgewater College in the United States.  He teaches all sorts of things in the history department, but what he is working on here is coins.  In an archaeological dig they find lots of coins and all of them have to be cleaned and identified.  Sometimes the archaeologist can determine the date of what they are digging by looking at the coins that are found, but they have to be careful because coins are very small and it is very common to find a coin from a completely different date located in a dig pit.

Tomorrow I am going to tell you about Kenchrea and what I saw there.  One of the things I will mention is that I saw lots of people.  There were a whole bunch of students there who were digging in the dusty heat. It looked like hard work.  One of them I talked to said that it was pretty exciting to work on a dig.

So, you see there is a lot of variety in the people who work at an archaeological site and there are also always people coming and going.  Nancy is here during the week, but goes home to Athens on the weekends.  Erica has been here several weeks, but will be leaving for Venice on Saturday.  Michael just came, but will be staying until September.  Julie has been here a while and I think is staying for a few more weeks. I think it is a very interesting place and it is amazing what you can learn if you just talk to people.

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Comments: Add New Comments
By maggie      December 14, 2007 -- 06:41 AM

By Megan Golding      July 18, 2007 -- 04:19 AM
Janice, pictures do come through on most other blogs I read. It has to do with how the RSS is set up.

By small Janice Friesen      July 17, 2007 -- 11:02 PM

Bad news!  Julie left yesterday so I cannot ask her those questions.  Maybe I will try to ask someone else, but it may be that I cannot find out the answers.  Julie was saying that this is a new field and that they are just now building a database of information.  There is not really enough info yet to learn anything conclusive. 

She did also say that what they can find out is broad generalizations.  For example, they know that the swirls in men's fingerprints are in general wider apart than those in women's fingerprints.  This can only be said when you take a large group and average them.  So, theoretically if you have a good database of fingerprints from pots in a certain period you could see if there were more women or men potters, or you could determine changes over time which might correlate with wars or other things that might take men away from the potting profession.  All of this is only in the guess form now though.


By Sister Susie      July 17, 2007 -- 06:55 PM
I have questions for Julie. How do fingerprints still exist on clay pots that have been covered with dirt for such a long time? How do you prevent new fingerprints from the people getting the atrifacts out of the ground from obliterating the original prints? And since I don't think they had an ancient Greece fingerprint database to use to look up what you find, how do you figure out who they belong to?

P.S. today I didn't have to scroll down to find the content

By Mark Ahlness      July 17, 2007 -- 04:27 PM
Janice, your pics are not coming through Bloglines or Netvibes (the 2 biggest rss readers currently) - but I am loving your blog! I usually connect directly to your blog every couple of days to enjoy the pics. Thanks! - Mark

By small Janice Friesen      July 16, 2007 -- 11:23 PM

Do other blogs you read through RSS feed show the pictures?  If so, I will mention that to My eCoach people.

Thanks for reading!


By Jeff H from Government grants      July 16, 2007 -- 08:10 PM
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By Megan Golding      July 16, 2007 -- 11:10 AM
The bios you just provided are really interesting to read. Thanks for "introducing" us to the folks working at Corinth.

On a side note: I read Learning in Greece via a feed and the pictures don't come through over RSS. It's a shame because your pictures help tell your stories so well (I read the post about the opera without the pictures -- it's much better with them!).