For the most part, the only things that survive are durable items such as potsherds (small fragments of pottery), tools or buildings of stone, bones, and teeth (which survive because they are covered with hard enamel).Because many items disintegrate over time, archaeologists get an incomplete view of the past that they must fill in with other kinds of information and educated reasoning.Archaeology is an important field of anthropology, which is the broad study of human culture and biology.Archaeologists concentrate their studies on past societies and changes in those societies over extremely long periods of time.Archeology is the scientific study of past human culture and behavior, from the origins of humans to the present.
By the time people lived in civilizations, burials and funeral ceremonies had become extremely important and elaborate rituals.
Archaeology also examines many of the same topics explored by historians.
But unlike historythe study of written records such as government archives, personal correspondence, and business documentsmost of the information gathered in archaeology comes from the study of objects lying on or under the ground Archaeologists refer to the vast store of information about the human past as the archaeological record.
Archaeological research spans the entire development of phenomena that are unique to humans.
For instance, archaeology tells the story of when people learned to bury their dead and developed beliefs in an afterlife.
The earliest subjects of archaeological study date from the origins of humanity.