The problem with archaeology is that most people have no idea what it is or what it entails. There are no fedoras or leather whips and no dinosaurs chasing us around dinosaur alley. So what is the difference? Well, before I let you lose on this hilarious video, I’ll clue you in on the differences between paleontologists and archaeologists.
First I’ll ask you one question. How many of you have seen or heard the Payless commercial about being a paleontologist? You may have noticed those large skeletal beasts in the background. Those are dinosaurs and archaeologists don’t study them, paleontologists Do.
Paleontology is the study of the history of life on Earth, as reflected in the fossil record. They don’t just study dinosaurs, however.
Like Indiana Jones, archaeologists study artifacts. Artifacts are things like tools and pots and other implements made and used by people. Ecofacts are the remains of plants or animals that were used by or eaten by people. Archaeologists also study landscapes, and there is a particular field called Landscape Archaeology, which allows the study of the modified landscapes and the behavior put forth to alter it.
Without further ado, here’s “We Don't Do Dinosaurs!” (The Archaeology Song). Raise your Trowels or a pint a beer, because this is a great ending to a hectic week.