Mound

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Grave Creek Mound, in Moundsville, West Virginia Grave Creek Mound.jpg
Grave Creek Mound, in Moundsville, West Virginia
Kościuszko Mound, Kraków, Poland Krakow 2006 195.jpg
Kościuszko Mound, Kraków, Poland

A mound is a heaped pile of earth, gravel, sand, rocks, or debris. Most commonly, mounds are earthen formations such as hills and mountains, particularly if they appear artificial. A mound may be any rounded area of topographically higher elevation on any surface. Artificial mounds have been created for a variety of reasons throughout history, including ceremonial (platform mound), burial (tumulus), and commemorative purposes (e.g. Kościuszko Mound).

Earth Third planet from the Sun in the Solar System

Earth is the third planet from the Sun and the only astronomical object known to harbor life. According to radiometric dating and other sources of evidence, Earth formed over 4.5 billion years ago. Earth's gravity interacts with other objects in space, especially the Sun and the Moon, Earth's only natural satellite. Earth revolves around the Sun in 365.26 days, a period known as an Earth year. During this time, Earth rotates about its axis about 366.26 times.

Gravel mix of crumbled stone (grain size range = 2-63 mm according to ISO 14688)

Gravel is a loose aggregation of rock fragments. Gravel is classified by particle size range and includes size classes from granule- to boulder-sized fragments. In the Udden-Wentworth scale gravel is categorized into granular gravel and pebble gravel. ISO 14688 grades gravels as fine, medium, and coarse with ranges 2 mm to 6.3 mm to 20 mm to 63 mm. One cubic metre of gravel typically weighs about 1,800 kg.

Sand A granular material composed of finely divided rock and mineral particles, from 0.063 to 2 mm diameter

Sand is a granular material composed of finely divided rock and mineral particles. It is defined by size, being finer than gravel and coarser than silt. Sand can also refer to a textural class of soil or soil type; i.e., a soil containing more than 85 percent sand-sized particles by mass.

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Archaeology

North American archaeology

In the archaeology of the United States and Canada, a mound is a deliberately constructed elevated earthen structure or earthwork, intended for a range of potential uses. In European and Asian archaeology, the word "tumulus" may be used as a synonym for an artificial hill, particularly if the hill is related to particular burial customs.

Archaeology, or archeology, is the study of human activity through the recovery and analysis of material culture. The archaeological record consists of artifacts, architecture, biofacts or ecofacts and cultural landscapes. Archaeology can be considered both a social science and a branch of the humanities. In North America archaeology is a sub-field of anthropology, while in Europe it is often viewed as either a discipline in its own right or a sub-field of other disciplines.

United States federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the largest city by population is New York. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico. The State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The U.S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The extremely diverse geography, climate, and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.

Canada Country in North America

Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometres, making it the world's second-largest country by total area. Canada's southern border with the United States is the world's longest bi-national land border. Its capital is Ottawa, and its three largest metropolitan areas are Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver. As a whole, Canada is sparsely populated, the majority of its land area being dominated by forest and tundra. Consequently, its population is highly urbanized, with over 80 percent of its inhabitants concentrated in large and medium-sized cities, many near the southern border. Canada's climate varies widely across its vast area, ranging from arctic weather in the north, to hot summers in the southern regions, with four distinct seasons.

While the term "mound" may be applied to historic constructions, most mounds in the United States are pre-Columbian earthworks, built by Native American peoples.[ citation needed ] Native Americans built a variety of mounds, including flat-topped pyramids or cones known as platform mounds, rounded cones, and ridge or loaf-shaped mounds. Some mounds took on unusual shapes, such as the outline of cosmologically significant animals. These are known as effigy mounds. [1] Some mounds, such as a few in Wisconsin, have rock formations, or petroforms within them, on them, or near them.

Indigenous peoples of the Americas Pre-Columbian inhabitants of North, Central, and South America and their descendants

The indigenous peoples of the Americas are the pre-Columbian peoples of North, Central, and South America and their descendants.

In geometry, a frustum is the portion of a solid that lies between one or two parallel planes cutting it. A right frustum is a parallel truncation of a right pyramid or right cone.

While these mounds are perhaps not as famous as burial mounds, like their European analogs, Native American mounds also have a variety of other uses. While some prehistoric cultures, like the Adena culture, used mounds preferentially for burial, [2] others used mounds for other ritual and sacred acts, as well as for secular functions. The platform mounds of the Mississippian culture, for example, may have supported temples, the houses of chiefs, council houses, and may have also acted as a platform for public speaking. Other mounds would have been part of defensive walls to protect a certain area. The Hopewell culture used mounds as markers of complex astronomical alignments related to ceremonies.

Burial ritual act of placing a dead person into the ground

Burial or interment is the ritual act of placing a dead person or animal, sometimes with objects, into the ground. This is accomplished by excavating a pit or trench, placing the deceased and objects in it, and covering it over. Most would agree that humans have been burying their dead since shortly after the origin of the species. Burial is often seen as indicating respect for the dead. It has been used to prevent the odor of decay, to give family members closure and prevent them from witnessing the decomposition of their loved ones, and in many cultures it has been seen as a necessary step for the deceased to enter the afterlife or to give back to the cycle of life.

Adena culture archaeological culture

The Adena culture was a Pre-Columbian Native American culture that existed from 1000 to 200 BC, in a time known as the Early Woodland period. The Adena culture refers to what were probably a number of related Native American societies sharing a burial complex and ceremonial system. The Adena lived in an area including parts of present-day Ohio, Indiana, Wisconsin, West Virginia, Kentucky, New York, Pennsylvania, and Maryland.

Mississippian culture mound-building Native American culture in Midwestern, Eastern, and Southeastern United States

The Mississippian culture was a mound-building Native American civilization archeologists date from about 800 CE to 1600 CE, varying regionally.

Mounds and related earthworks are the only significant monumental construction in pre-Columbian Eastern and Central North America.

Monument type of structure either explicitly created to commemorate a person or important event, or used for that purpose

A monument is a type of—usually three-dimensional—structure that was explicitly created to commemorate a person or event, or which has become relevant to a social group as a part of their remembrance of historic times or cultural heritage, due to its artistic, historical, political, technical or architectural importance. Examples of monuments include statues, (war) memorials, historical buildings, archaeological sites, and cultural assets. If there is a public interest in its preservation, a monument can for example be listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Mounds are given different names depending on which culture they strive from. They can be located all across the world in spots such as Asia, Europe and the Americas. "Mound builders" have more commonly been associated with the mounds in the Americas. They all have different meanings and sometimes are constructed as animals and can be clearly seen from aerial views.

India

Kankali Tila

General view of the excavations in January 1889 at Kankali Tila, Mathura Kankali Tila (Jaini mound).jpg
General view of the excavations in January 1889 at Kankali Tila, Mathura

Kankali Tila is a famous mound located at Mathura in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. A Jain stupa was excavated here in 1890-91 by Dr. Fuhrer. [3]

Kankali Tila

Kankali Tila is a mound located at Mathura in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh. The name of the mound is derived from a modern temple of Hindu goddess Kankali. The famous Jain stupa was excavated here in 1890-91 by Alois Anton Führer.

Mathura City in Uttar Pradesh, India

Mathura is a city in the North Indian state of Uttar Pradesh.It is located approximately 50 kilometres (31 mi) north of Agra, and 145 kilometres (90 mi) south-east of Delhi; about 11 kilometres (6.8 mi) from the town of Vrindavan, and 22 kilometres (14 mi) from Govardhan. It is the administrative centre of Mathura district of Uttar Pradesh. In ancient times, Mathura was an economic hub, located at the junction of important caravan routes. The 2011 Census of India estimated the population of Mathura to be 441,894.

Uttar Pradesh State in India

Uttar Pradesh is a state considered to be part of central, northern and north-central India. Abbreviated as UP, it is the most populous state in the Republic of India as well as the most populous country subdivision in the world. It is located in the north-central region of the Indian subcontinent, has over 200 million inhabitants. It was created on 1 April 1937 as the United Provinces of Agra and Oudh during British rule, and was renamed Uttar Pradesh in 1950. The state is divided into 18 divisions and 75 districts with the capital being Lucknow. The main ethnic group is the Hindavi people, forming the demographic plurality. On 9 November 2000, a new state, Uttarakhand, was carved out from the state's Himalayan hill region. The two major rivers of the state, the Ganga and Yamuna, join at Allahabad (Prayagraj) and then flow as the Ganges further east. Hindi is the most widely spoken language and is also the official language of the state.

Archaeology elsewhere

Mound, as a technical term in archaeology, is not generally in favor in the rest of the world.[ citation needed ] More specific local terminology is preferred, and each of these terms has its own article (see below).

Mound types

See also

Animals


Related Research Articles

Tomb burial place

A tomb is a repository for the remains of the dead. It is generally any structurally enclosed interment space or burial chamber, of varying sizes.

Hopewell tradition common aspects of Native American culture that flourished in northeastern and midwestern United States

The Hopewell tradition describes the common aspects of the Native American culture that flourished along rivers in the northeastern and midwestern United States from 100 BCE to 500 CE, in the Middle Woodland period. The Hopewell tradition was not a single culture or society, but a widely dispersed set of related populations. They were connected by a common network of trade routes, known as the Hopewell exchange system.

Tumulus Mound of earth and stones raised over graves

A tumulus is a mound of earth and stones raised over a grave or graves. Tumuli are also known as barrows, burial mounds or kurgans, and may be found throughout much of the world. A cairn, which is a mound of stones built for various purposes, may also originally have been a tumulus.

Gallery grave form of megalithic tomb

A gallery grave is a form of megalithic tomb built primarily during the Neolithic Age in Europe in which the main gallery of the tomb is entered without first passing through an antechamber or hallway. There are at least four major types of gallery grave, and they may be covered with an earthen mound or rock mound.

Serpent Mound archaeological site

The Great Serpent Mound is a 1,348-foot (411 m)-long, three-foot-high prehistoric effigy mound on a plateau of the Serpent Mound crater along Ohio Brush Creek in Adams County, Ohio. Maintained within a park by Ohio History Connection, it has been designated a National Historic Landmark by the United States Department of Interior. The Serpent Mound of Ohio was first reported from surveys by Ephraim Squire and Edwin Davis in their historic volume Ancient Monuments of the Mississippi Valley, published in 1848 by the newly founded Smithsonian Museum.

Round barrow Hemispherical mound of earth and/or stone raised over a burial placed in the middle

A round barrow is a type of tumulus and is one of the most common types of archaeological monuments. Although concentrated in Europe, they are found in many parts of the world, probably because of their simple construction and universal purpose.

Mound Builders pre-Columbian cultures of North America that constructed various styles of earthen mounds

The various cultures collectively termed "Mound Builders" were inhabitants of North America who, during a circa 5,000-year period, constructed various styles of earthen mounds for religious, ceremonial, burial, and elite residential purposes. These included the pre-Columbian cultures of the Archaic period, Woodland period, and Mississippian period; dating from roughly 3500 BCE to the 16th century CE, and living in regions of the Great Lakes, the Ohio River Valley, and the Mississippi River valley and its tributary waters.

Petroform

Petroforms, also known as boulder outlines or boulder mosaics, are human-made shapes and patterns made by lining up large rocks on the open ground, often on quite level areas. Petroforms in North America were originally made by various Native American and First Nation tribes, who used various terms to describe them. Petroforms can also include a rock cairn or inukshuk, an upright monolith slab, a medicine wheel, a fire pit, a desert kite, sculpted boulders, or simply rocks lined up or stacked for various reasons. Old World petroforms include the Carnac stones and many other megalithic monuments.

Earth/fertility cult

The Earth/fertility Mississippian cult was associated with earthen platform mounds.

Platform mound Earthwork or mound intended to support a structure or activity

A platform mound is any earthwork or mound intended to support a structure or activity.

Spiro Mounds

Spiro Mounds is a major Northern Caddoan Mississippian archaeological site located in present-day Eastern Oklahoma. The 80-acre site lies near the Arkansas River in Fort Coffee, seven miles north of the town of Spiro.

Earthworks (archaeology) General term to describe artificial changes in land level

In archaeology, earthworks are artificial changes in land level, typically made from piles of artificially placed or sculpted rocks and soil. Earthworks can themselves be archaeological features, or they can show features beneath the surface.

Kincaid Mounds State Historic Site

The Kincaid Mounds Historic Site c. 1050-1400 CE, is the site of a city from the prehistoric Mississippian culture. One of the largest settlements of the Mississippian culture, it was located at the southern tip of present-day U.S. state of Illinois. Kincaid Mounds has been notable for both its significant role in native North American prehistory and for the central role the site has played in the development of modern archaeological techniques. The site had at least 11 substructure platform mounds. Artifacts from the settlement link its major habitation and the construction of the mounds to the Mississippian period, but it was also occupied earlier during the Woodland period.

The Oak Mounds is a large prehistoric earthwork mound, and a smaller mound to the west. They are located outside Clarksburg, in Harrison County, West Virginia.

Old Town (Franklin, Tennessee) archaeological site in Williamson County, Tennessee near Franklin

Old Town is an archaeological site in Williamson County, Tennessee near Franklin. The site includes the remnants of a Native American village and mound complex of the Mississippian culture, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) as Old Town Archaeological Site (40WM2).

Marietta Earthworks

The Marietta Earthworks is an archaeological site located at the confluence of the Muskingum and Ohio Rivers in Washington County, Ohio, United States. Most of this Hopewellian complex of earthworks is now covered by the modern city of Marietta. Archaeologists have dated the ceremonial site's construction to approximately 100 BCE to 500 CE.

References

  1. National Park Service (August 30, 2015). "Effigy Moundbuilders". National Park Service. Retrieved August 30, 2015.
  2. Smith, C. R. (March 9, 2000). "An Introduction to North America's Native People: Adena". Cabrillo College . Retrieved August 30, 2015.
  3. Smith, Vincent Arthur (1901). The Jain stupa and other antiquities of Mathura . Retrieved 14 November 2015.