ADAP - Sardinian Data

Data from Ortu Còmidu, Sàrdara, Sardinia

by Thomas Braun, Tufts University

The data base available here contains material from the excavation at Ortu Còmidu, Sàrdara, Sardinia, directed by Professor Miriam Balmuth of Tufts University. The information had been supplied by Mr. Thomas Braun; it was the core of his M.A. thesis.

About this document

Database file: SARDINV.DBF, a dBase III Plus® file, information on objects excavated at Ortu Còmidu, Sàrdara, Province of Cagliari, Sardinia, Italy.
Size of file: approximately 2,069K bytes (111K bytes when compressed). Each record uses approximately 500 bytes. Note that these were the file sizes recorded by Windows NT 4.

Text File: THESIS.RTF, a rich text format file, a Masters thesis regarding material in the above database file, entitled Toward Field-Wide Data Standards in Computerized Archaeological Artifact Databases: A Case Study at Ortu Còmidu, Sàrdara, Province of Cagliari, Sardinia, Italy. This thesis was completed and copyrighted in May, 1995, by Mr. Braun, and last revised in May, 1996. The original file was formatted for Microsoft Word 5.1a ® on a Macintosh, and the ADAP staff converted it to the rich text format in June 1997. Note that the figures from Mr. Braun's thesis are not yet available.
Size of file: approximately 472K bytes (95K bytes when compressed) Note that these were the file sizes recorded by Windows NT 4.

Principal investigator and thesis advisor: Miriam S. Balmuth, Department of Classics, Tufts University, Medford, MA 02155. (617) 624-3216 .
Database technician and thesis author: Thomas James Braun, 5929 Kellogg Avenue South, Edina, MN 55424. (612) 927-9671

Earliest date of site: approximately 1500 BC, Nuragic period.
Latest data of site: approximately 300 AD, Roman period.

Site type: small domestic structure(s). Excavation has ceased, but ran for several weeks during the summer months of the years 1975, 1976, 1977, and 1978. Parts of the site remain unexcavated. Artifacts include primarily pottery fragments, but also significant amounts of bone, shell, bronze, worked stone, etc. Files completed and codified as of May, 1995. Project based at Tufts University. As long as users follow proper citation procedures, the authors allow unlimited use of these files. A hard copy of this thesis is on file at Tufts University. Feel free to use the information in this thesis, but be sure to cite it as a source.


This is a three part thesis dealing with the results of a Tufts University excavation completed under the direction of Dr. Miriam S. Balmuth, at Ortu Còmidu, Sàrdara, province of Cagliari, Sardinia, Italy, from 1975 to 1978. The first section of this thesis explores aspects of artifact database management, using the Ortu Còmidu computerized database as a case study. In particular the author emphasizes the preservation of archaeological records. Additionally, this thesis will explore current movements within the field of archaeology to bring some degree of consistency and intelligibility to computerized archaeological files, specifically databases. This thesis will also address one of the most pressing concerns of today's archaeologists, and sections one and two will constitute a guide to understanding one type of archaeological database, thus allowing archaeologists to efficiently organize and compile one.

Section two of this thesis is a compilation of a "data dictionary" listing the contents of the computerized archaeological artifact database, and explaining each field chapter by chapter. The excavation inventory books form an initial written database, designed by M. S. Balmuth under consultation with Patricia Phillips, among others. Mark Besonen, an undergraduate in geology and archaeology under M. S. Balmuth, designed an early version of the computerized database, and began the arduous task of data entry in the late summer of 1990. Section two will also include pertinent information surrounding the Ortu Còmidu permanent excavation records, and will explain facts necessary to understand the final data set from Ortu Còmidu. This includes information about artifact processing, scientific analyses, and publications in which the artifacts appear. Finally, section two will also describe the inevitable inconsistencies and irregularities found within any data set.

Section three of this thesis is the final printout of the contents of the database. The database contains records and information on all the artifacts recovered in the Tufts University excavations at Ortu Còmidu, and encompasses more than 4,000 separate entries. It is a complete catalog of almost every find at the excavation, and will serve as a tool to analyze the nature of the site. Additionally, the complete printout of the database contents serves as a codified, edited, and legible inventory of all the finds of the expedition. (Note that this section of Mr. Braun's thesis is not included as part of the ADAP archive, as the database file itself may be downloaded.)

For .DBF file:

download database file
(compressed file: SARDINV.ZIP; uncompressed file: sardinv.dbf) - 4056 records

For text file:

download thesis file
(compressed file: BRAUNTXT.ZIP; uncompressed file: thesis.rtf)

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