From Archive to GIS: Recovering Spatial Information for Tholos IV at the Palace of Nestor from the Notebooks of Lord William Taylour

Change log
Stocker, Sharon R 
Davis, Jack L 

jats:pThis article is a case study in doing new things with old data. In 1953 Lord William Taylour directed the excavation of a monumental vaulted tholos tomb known as 'Tholos IV' at the site of ancient Pylos, Messenia, Greece. The excavation was conducted over two months, during which detailed notes were recorded in three notebooks now kept in the Archives of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens. The formal publication of Tholos IV, however, contains only a basic narrative of the excavation, offering neither precise detail on stratigraphy, object find spots, nor even a complete inventory of small finds. The present study goes back to the original notebooks kept by Taylour and combines the data contained in them with a new digital survey of Tholos IV to produce a comprehensive and accurate 3D GIS model for the excavation. Furthermore, the GIS has been produced in such a way that its dataset is compatible with new excavation data currently generated in the ongoing Palace of Nestor Excavations (PONEX) project, bringing together two excavation campaigns conducted under very different circumstances, methodologies, and recording protocols. Discussion follows on how the production of this GIS deepens our understanding not just of the legacy excavation, but also of the site and its wider landscape.</jats:p>

4303 Historical Studies, 43 History, Heritage and Archaeology
Journal Title
Internet Archaeology
Conference Name
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Council for British Archaeology
AHRC (1803840)
Loy’s contribution to the project in 2018 and 2019 was supported jointly by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and Pembroke College Cambridge, award number AH/L503897/1, with further funding for travel made available by the Louise Taft Semple Fund of the Department of Classics of the University of Cincinnati