- Beautiful Things and Bones of Desire: Emerging Issues in the Archaeology of Death and Burial
- Death, Memory, and Material Culture: Catalytic Commemoration and the Cremated Dead
- African Perspectives on Death, Burial, and Mortuary Archaeology
- The Place of Veneration in Early South Asian Buddhism
- The Archaeology of Death and Burial in the Islamic World
- Burial of the Christian Dead in the Later Middle Ages
- The Unburied Dead
- Upper Palaeolithic Mortuary Practices in Eurasia: A Critical Look at the Burial Record
- Power and Society: Mesolithic Europe
- Archaeological Study of Mortuary Practices in the Eastern United States
- The Living and the Dead in later Prehistoric Iberia
- The Powerful Dead of the Inca
- Land Ownership and Landscape Belief: Introduction and Contexts
- Megaliths in North-West Europe: The Cosmology of Sacred Landscapes
- Creating Death: An Archaeology of Dying
- Treating Bodies: Transformative and Communicative Practices
- Preserving the Body
- Cremations in Culture and Cosmology
- Identities in Transformation: Identities, Funerary Rites, and the Mortuary Process
- Death and Gender
- Ancient Identities: Age, Gender, and Ethnicity in Ancient Greek Burials
- Ethnicity and Gender in Roman Funerary Commemoration: Case Studies from the Empire's Frontiers
- Engendering Ancestors through Death Ritual in Ancient China
- Death, Emotion, and the Household among the Late Moche
- Belief and the Archaeology of Death
- Insights into Early Mortuary Practices of <i>Homo</i>
- Equipping and Stripping the Dead: A Case Study on the Procurement, Compilation, Arrangement, and Fragmentation of Grave Inventories in New Kingdom Thebes
Abstract and Keywords
The chapter investigates a theme in recent archaeological investigations of death, memory, and material culture. I contrast how material culture was deployed to make commemorative ‘citations’ in past mortuary practices from those that operated as commemorative ‘catalysts’. The latter, often comprising of modest materials and substances, have often been overlooked in studies of mortuary variability and significance, particularly their roles in post-cremation burial practices. To illustrate my argument, I present four case studies from the archaeology of cremation in the later 1st millennium AD. In doing this, I explore the contextual and variable commemorative deployment of material culture to enable the transformation of the dead and the making of ancestors.
Howard Williams is Professor of Archaeology at the University of Chester. His current research focuses on early medieval commemoration, the contemporary archaeology of death and the history of early medieval archaeology.
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