Geografische Informationssysteme in TOPOI

 

Topoi's web-based Geographic Information System (WebGIS) is an online tool for spatial and geo-statistical depiction of geo-referenced data.

On the basis of modern reference maps, research results are presented by Topoi researchers in layer-based, raster or vector format. Use is made of, e.g. historical maps, elevation maps, contour maps, networks between settlements or drill core sites used in

sedimentological research aimed at reconstructing landscapes. Detailed descriptions of the projects are available on the corresponding project websites.

The introductory WebGIS application (right) shows all of the disciplines involved in research in the Excellence Cluster during Topoi I (2008 – 2012), indicating both their location and frequency of occurrence. This is followed by a depiction of all Topoi-I projects that created and/or used spatial maps.

Click on a map to access it. To navigate within the map use the icons on the top menu bar of the WebGIS interface.

The application complies with OGC specifications.

 

Open Access

For data download open the ‘Legend' wiget, press the drop down arrow and go to ‘Description'. On the page bottom press ‘Generate KML' to choose the layer you would like to download.

 

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Semirechye or Siebenstromland in the 2nd to the 1st millenium BC.

Anton Gass

WebGIS-map of figure 1, 3 and 9 in:

Anton Gass, "Das Land der sieben Flüsse im 2. bis 1. Jahrtausend v. Chr", in: eTopoi. Journal for Ancient Studies, Volume 3 (2014), 87-106

 

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Archaeological and Geoarchaeological Research in Kazakhstan

Research Group A-I-1

The archaeological and geographical tandem subproject "Archaeological and Geoarchaeological Research in Semirech'ye/Kazakhstan" deals with the archaeological cultural development of this region during the Bronze Age and Early Iron Age (2nd – 1st millennium BC). The geographical aspect of the project involves reconstructing the Late Holocene landscape of southeast Semirech'ye.

Explanation of the key:

Kazakhstan archaeology

  • BZ-Gräberfeld – cemetry of the Bronze Age
  • BZ-Siedlung – settlement of the Bronze Age
  • BZ-FEZ Siedlung – settlement with features or finds of the Bronze -and the Early Iron Age
  • BZ-FEZ Gräberfeld – cemetry with features of the Bronze -and the Early Iron Age
  • FEZ-Gräberfeld – cemetry of the Early Iron Age
  • FEZ-Siedlung – settlement of the Early Iron Age
  • FEZ Hort- Schatzfund – hoard or treasure of the Early Iron Age
  • Turgen_Catchment – catchment area  of the river Turgen

 

Open Access

For data download open the ‘Legend' wiget, press the drop down arrow and go to ‘Description'. On the page bottom press ‘Generate KML' to choose the layer you would like to download.

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Taganrog: Central Sites of an Early Greek Polis in the Northeastern Black Sea Region

Research Group A-I-2

Prehistoric settlement finds and countless burial mounds (kurgans) in the northern Black Sea Steppes indicate that the steppes have been used for thousands of years as a place to live and conduct economic activity. The fluctuating aridity of the climate in the Holocene period is one important factor in the steppes' development as a natural and cultural space. The geoarchaeological research focuses on the natural development of the landscape in connection with spatial and temporal changes to settlement patterns, especially during the Bronze and Early Iron Age (3300-600 BC).

 

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Felix Romuliana. A Late Ancient Imperial Palace and Its Surroundings

Research Group A-I-4

Environmental reconstruction for landscape history research on the influence of anthropogenic factors on surface processes.

Spatial and temporal patterns in archaeological finds studied and interpreted in the context of regional settlement history.

 

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Archaeological and geoarchaelogical investigation of the Aleppo hinterland

Research Group A-I-6

The area under investigation is the region around Aleppo (north-western Syria), within a radius of ca. 50 kilometres toward north, and of about 30-35 kilometres toward west, south and east. It is defined by the Turkish border to the north, by the Nahr eḏ-Ḏahab valley – i.e. the western part of the Ǧabbūl plain – to the east, by the al-Maṭḫ region – the marshy area where the Nahr al-Quweyq disappears – to the south and by the ʻAfrīn river valley and the Ǧebel Simʻān to the west and the north-west.

The most common form of Bronze Age and Iron Age settlement in the Aleppo region appears to be the tell (the Arabic word for 'hill' or 'archaeological mound'), normally located in lowland plains. A total of 175 sites have been identified.

The tells are neither randomly situated nor dispersed. It is possible to observe a clustered distribution of the sites. They tended to be rather regularly spaced at 1,5-3,5 km intervals. The settlement clusters are located in three areas (north, east, and south-west of Aleppo) with high agricultural potential (presence of fertile soil, relatively high water table, favourable relief).

Aleppo is placed in the centre of three highly settled basins, which lie in a particularly favourable position for agriculture, or, from another point of view, to the periphery of them all. It is likely that the staples to support the ancient inhabitants of Aleppo were produced in these surrounding areas.

Quellenverweise:

1 - Knitter
2 - DRESSÉ PAR LE SERVICE GÉOGRAPHIQUE DES F.F.L., 1943. Ressâfé (NI-37-XXI). [map]. 2. S.l.: Réimprimé par l' Institut Géographique National.
DRESSÉ PAR LE SERVICE GÉOGRAPHIQUE DES F.F.L., 1944. Antakya/Antioche (NJ-36-VI; NJ-37-I). [map]. 2. S.l.: Réimprimé par l' Institut Géographique National.
DRESSÉ PAR LE SERVICE GÉOGRAPHIQUE DES F.F.L., 1945a. Alep (NJ-37-II). [map]. 1. S.l.: Réimprimé par l' Institut Géographique National.
DRESSÉ PAR LE SERVICE GÉOGRAPHIQUE DES F.F.L., 1945b. Djérâbloûs (NJ-37-III). [map]. 1. S.l.: Réimprimé par l' Institut Géographique National.
DRESSÉ PAR LE SERVICE GÉOGRAPHIQUE DES F.F.L., 1945c. Lattaquié-Hama (NI-36-XXIV; NI-37-XIX). [map]. S.l.: Réimprimé par l' Institut Géographique National.
DRESSÉ PAR LE SERVICE GÉOGRAPHIQUE DES F.F.L., 1945d. Sélémîyé (NI-37-XX). [map]. 1. S.l.: Réimprimé par l' Institut Géographique National.
3 - VAN LIERE, W.J., 1963. Capitals and Citadels of Bronze-Iron Age Syria in their Relationship to Land and Water. In: Les Annales Archéologiques De Syrie. 1963. Vol. XIII, pp. 107–122.
4 - WIRTH, Eugen, 1971. Syrien: eine geographische Landeskunde. Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft. Wissenschaftliche Länderkunden (4/5). ISBN 3-534-02864-3.

 

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Egypt Lies in Africa. Paleoenvironmental Reconstruction in Naga, Central Sudan

Research Group A-I-7

In the hinterland of the river Nile the ancient and now abandoned city of Naga is located and recently excavated. The city of Naga once stood in an dry environment far from flowing waters. It belonged to the Meroitic culture (ca. 300 BCE – ca. 300 CE), which worshipped Egyptian gods but was also greatly shaped by African roots. Today the region gets about 100 mm of precipitation a year. But  there must have been a reason to erect a city in this peripheral location. Did the landscape look different at that time from how it does now? Or was the convenient water reservoir, the so called "Great Hafir of Naga", the reason for a sustainable water supply, so that enough water could be harvested and stored for this city in ancient times?

 

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Egypt Lies in Africa. Paleoenvironmental Reconstruction Sahara

Research Group A-I-7

The project "Quaternary Landscape Development and Current Morphodynamics in the Central Sahara (NE-Niger)" was sponsored by the DFG from 2005 to 2008. Participants in the joint project include the Institute of Geographical Sciences at the Freie Universität Berlin, the Institute of Geography/Physical Geography at the Bavarian Julius-Maximilians Universität Würzburg, the Institute of Soil Sciences and Soil Conservation at the Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen and the Université Abdou Moumouni Niamey in Niger.

The goal of the interdisciplinary project is to form a more precise view of available knowledge on climate variations and related changes to paleoenvironmental conditions during the Late Quaternary period in central Sahara, as well as to obtain and systematize new finds.

The project is divided into several subprojects that focus on closely related research topics. This allows fieldwork to be conducted using an interdisciplinary approach.

Key Site: Seeterrassental
Main emphasis of the physical geography work at the FU Berlin. All along the course of the valley a multitude of dGPS measurements were taken of the channel. These provide a basis for fluvial-morphological research and paleohydrological modeling.

Key Site: Seguedine
The Sebkha lies in the area of the graded foreland depression of the Bilma escarpment. Under the direction of the Institute of Geography/Physical Geography at the Bavarian Julius-Maximilians Universität Würzburg, a hole 15 m. in depth was drilled here. The drill core serves as the basis for research into landscape development in the region during the Holocene period.

Key Site: Fabergé Depression
The depression (its name is based on egg-shaped artifacts) was investigated by all of the workgroups involved. This research was carried out in the context of the increasing number of archaeological artifacts discovered at the site.

Test Site: YooAngo
This depression is located in an area that has yet to be studied. High-resolution satellite data and sherding of the entire surface has made it possible for geographical and pedological research to be conducted in this area for the first time.

 

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Ancient Landscape Dynamics around Pergamon

Research Group A-I-8

 

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Monti Navegna e Cervia: Geo-Archaeology and Landscape Development in an Italian National Park

Research Group A-I-9

The Sabine Mountains are not far away from Rome. At their edge is Tivoli, the epitome of the amusement park, famous for the fountain complexes of the Villa d'Este, a retreat for rich Romans. Was it the only one? In today's national park Monti Navegna e Cervia, some 60 km southeast of Rome, are remnants of a Roman villa. So was the region a "normal" hinterland of Rome .

On Monte San Giovanni, at more than 1000 meters above sea level the highest point in the park, is a small medieval church. But underneath it, the foundations of an ancient shrine were found. Archaeologists suspect it was a holy site dedicated to Jupiter.

All of the region's roads passed this site. Might it have been a central site for the entire region? Researchers face the question whether a shrine in a region settled so thinly can assume the function of a religious center. To this end, we must learn how the region was settled over the last 2,500 years. What meaning did the place have in Antiquity and then later in the Middle Ages? And finally: how did settlement affect the landscape?

 

Published Research available at DOI (digital object identifier).

resolve: 10.1016/j.quaint.2012.08.379

and: 10.1016/j.quaint.2012.12.007

 

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Monumental Architecture in the Nabataean Capital Petra (Jordan): Graves and Palaces

Research Group A-I-16

Since 2010 the International Umm al-Biyara Project (for more information on the project, visit http://www.auac.ch/iubp/ ), which is partially sponsored by TOPOI and falls within the research interest of Prof. Dr. S. G. Schmid (TOPOI Research Area A-I-16), investigated Nabataean structures on the hilltop of Umm al-Biyara in Petra, Jordan. This map shows the location of possible watchtowers (blue triangles) of the immediate Petra region with the so called Structure 10 (ST 10) on Umm al-Biyara at its centre. GIS-based viewsheds were calculated (here exemplary from ST 10 [green] and a possible tower in the Wadi Sabra [red]) in order to research a possible Nabataean defense- and communication system. The yellow circles show the so called middle-distance radii in which features must lie, in order to be visible (calculated here at 4400m). When zooming in, it can be noticed that the two towers are just outside the radius. However, especially the overlapping areas of the radii might suggest the position of unknown towers. Part of on-going Petraean research will be to investigate further this phenomenon. For further information on the method, see W. Kennedy, The Hills Have Eyes: GIS-Based Studies on A Possible Watchtower on Umm-al Biyara (in press).

 

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Mobility in Semiretchye in the 1st Century B.C.

Research Group A-II

Semiretchye in southeastern Kazakhstan is one of the most important site regions in the European steppe belt, with countless archaeological legacies left by mounted nomadic groups (the Saks) of the Scythian period. Only very few (Besšatyr, Issyk) of the thousands of burial mounds (kurgans) have thus far been studied; and all of these excavations are old and do not meet modern methodological standards. The increased population of Semiretchye beginning in the 1st century B.C. is associated with fundamental changes in all areas of life: groups that were still settled in the 2nd century B.C. become mobile, livelihoods and ways of life change, and entirely new living spaces are sought out and appropriated or structured in new ways. Simultaneously, for the fi rst time in the history of Semiretchye, close contacts develop with Iran and northwestern China, connections that will later develop into a northern branch of the Silk Road. These transformations, their causes, and their consequences will be investigated.

 

explanation of the key:

  • JEZ Fundstellen – studied sites of the Early Iron Age (chronologically wusun)
  • FEZ Fundstellen – studied sites of the Later Iron Age (chronologically saken)

Poster on the projekt

 

Open Access

For data download open the ‘Legend' wiget, press the drop down arrow and go to ‘Description'. On the page bottom press ‘Generate KML' to choose the layer you would like to download.

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Prehistoric mobility and palaeodiet in Western Eurasia. Stable isotope analysis of human populations and domesticated animals between 3500 and 300 cal BC

Reseach Group A-II

 

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Methodological Basic Research in Archaeoinformatics: Is Stratigraphy Measurable?

Research Group A-III-6

WebGIS-map of historical Ostia Antica showing the site during 17th century.

By ticking the rectangles in the left column (layer manager) one can make visible the recent hydrology system, the brook  (Bach)  and the water area (Wasserfläche). The settlement area (Siedlungsfläche) is shown in orange and can be ticked and un-ticked as well. Several map backgrounds for Ostia Antica can be selected in the same way.

On the upper right hand site one can find the navigation toolbar. By zooming in and out one changes the scale simultaneously. There is a second navigation toolbar on the upper right hand side of the map similar to the one used in google maps or google earth. The scale is given in kilometers (lower left hand side).

Press the icon "i" and a point in the map, then scan across the pop-up information box and press the arrows for further information.

One may measure any distance in the map by clicking the little ruler symbol with the question mark on top.  It is possible to choose the unit of measurement: feet, kilometers, meters or miles by pressing the arrow after finishing to draw the line with a double-click.

"go to location" (symbol: XY) enables to find a specific place using its longitude and latitude data. "pan to" moves the map to the specified point and "zoom to" zooms to its location.

The globe with a magnifying glass shows the full extend of the map – in this case the whole world. Ostia Antica is still marked.

The background map is a satellite image provided by Google. Hence, the whole map uses the World Geodetic System (WGS) 1984.

 

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Untersuchung der Standorteigenschaften bedeutender antiker Zentren in Kleinasien

Research Group A-I-21

Sources:

1 - Knitter
2 - MERIÇ, Recep, 2009. Das Hinterland von Ephesos. Archäologisch-topographische Forschungen im Kaystros-Tal. Wien: Ergänzungshefte zu den Jahresheften des Österreichischen Archäologischen Institutes in Wien, 12.
3 - [Umbenennung: Sites in the Küçük Menderes valley]
HOREJS, Barbara, 2011. Neues zur Frühbronzezeit in Westanatolien. In: BLAKOLMER, Fritz, REINHOLDT, Claus, WEILHARTNER, Jörg and NIGHTINGALE, Geogr (eds.), Österreichische Forschungen zur Ägäischen Bronzezeit 2009 - Akten der Tagung vom 6. bis 7. März 2009 am Fachbereich Altertumswissenschaften der Universität Salzburg. Wien: Sonderdruck. pp. 157–171.
4 -
HOREJS, Barbara, 2010. Bronzezeitliche Besiedlungsmuster im Kaikostal. Interpretationen erster Surveyergebnisse im Umland von Pergamon (Türkei). In: HOREJS, Barbara and KIENLIN, Tobias, L. (eds.), Siedlung und Handwerk - Studien zu sozialen Kontexten in der Bronzezeit. Bonn: Verlag Dr. Rudolf Habelt GmbH. Universitätsforschungen zur prähistorischen Archäologie, 194. pp. 47–67.
5 - HARITA GENEL KOMUTANLIĞINICA SAYISAL OLARAK HAZIRLANMIŞ VE BASILMIŞTIR, 2002. Tükiye Fiziki Haritası [online]. [map]. S.l.: Her Hakkı Saklıdır. Her Hakkı Saklıdır. Available from: http://www.erisi.com/gelisim/harita/trmap/fiziki.jpg.
6 - JARVIS, A., REUTER, H. I., NELSON, A. and GUEVARA, E., 2008. Hole-filled seamless SRTM data V4, International Centre for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT). In: [online]. 2008. [Accessed 19 October 2011]. Available from: http://srtm.csi.cgiar.org.
7 - PHILIPPSON, Alfred, 1910. Einleitung - Das westliche Mysien und die pergamenische Landschaft: mit 8 Bildertafeln, einer geologischen Karte und einer Skizze im Text. Gotha: Perthes. Ergänzungsband XXXVI (Heft 167-171).
PHILIPPSON, Alfred, 1913. Das östliche Mysien und die benachbarten Teile von Phrygien und Bithynien: mit 7 Bildertafeln, einer geologischen Karte und 6 Figuren im Text. Gotha: Perthes. A. Petermann's Mitteilungen aus Justus Perthes' Geographischer Anstalt; Ergänzungsheft 177, Ergänzungsband 38.
PHILIPPSON, Alfred, 1914. Das östliche Lydien und südwestliche Phrygien: mit 8 Bildertafeln, einer geologischen Karte und 3 Figuren im Text. Gotha: Perthes. A. Petermann's Mitteilungen aus Justus Perthes' Geographischer Anstalt; Ergänzungsheft 180, Ergänzungsband 38.
PHILIPPSON, Alfred, 1915. Karien südlich des Mäander und des westlichen Lykien (Schlußheft). Gotha: Perthes. A. Petermann's Mitteilungen aus Justus Perthes' Geographischer Anstalt, Ergänzungsheft 183, Ergänzungsband 39.
8 - EROL, Oğuz, 1983. Die naturraumliche Gliederung der Turkei. Wiesbaden: L. Reichert. Beihefte zum Tübinger Atlas des Vorderen Orients, A-13. ISBN 3882261765.

 

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Acts

Research Group C-III

 

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Space-relevant innovations and mobile lifestyle north of the Black Sea (3.500-2.000 B.C.) - Atlas of Innovations

Research Group D-6

 

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