Tephra isochrons and chronologies of colonization

Schmid, Magdalena M.E., Dugmore, Andy, Vésteinsson, Orri, and Newton, Anthony (2017) Tephra isochrons and chronologies of colonization. Quaternary Geochronology, 40. pp. 56-66.

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This paper demonstrates the use of tephrochronology in dating the earliest archaeological evidence for the settlement of Iceland. This island was one of the last places on Earth settled by people and there are conflicting ideas about the pace and scale of initial colonisation. Three tephra layers, the Landnám (‘land-taking’) tephra layer (A.D. 877 ± 1), the Eldgjá tephra (A.D. 939) and the recently dated V-Sv tephra (A.D. 938 ± 6) can be found at 58% of 253 securely-dated early settlement sites across the country. The presence of the tephras permits both a countrywide comparison, and a classification of these settlement sites into pre-Landnám, Landnám and post-Landnám. The data summarised here for the first time indicate that it will be possible to reconstruct the tempo and development of the colonisation process in decadal resolution by more systematically utilising the dating potential of tephrochronology.

Item ID: 77053
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1878-0350
Keywords: Iceland, Landnam tephra, colonisation, tephrochronology, periodisation, Viking age
Copyright Information: © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Funders: Icelandic Research Fund (Rannis), Watanabe Trust Fund
Date Deposited: 14 Dec 2022 02:17
FoR Codes: 37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3705 Geology > 370512 Volcanology @ 30%
37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3705 Geology > 370502 Geochronology @ 50%
37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3705 Geology > 370510 Stratigraphy (incl. biostratigraphy, sequence stratigraphy and basin analysis) @ 20%
SEO Codes: 13 CULTURE AND SOCIETY > 1307 Understanding past societies > 130704 Understanding Europe’s past @ 100%
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