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By Gary M. Feinman

Some of the most hard difficulties dealing with modern archaeology is that of explaining the operation and variety of historic states. This quantity addresses the ways that old states have been based and operated, an realizing of that is key to our skill to interpret a states upward push or fall.

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These rock-cut tombs lacked the labor-intensive ashlar masonry and bronze doors of their royal counterparts. They were, however, noticeably more elaborate than the simple grave of the average commoner. " It is likely that all members of the hereditary nobility ended up in a chamber tomb ofsome kind. Perhaps only those nobles who ascended to the rank of king received a tholos with ashlar masonry and bronze doors. , Uruk). By studying the archaeological ground plans of the better-known second- and third-generation archaic states, however, we can establish a set of clues by which states can be identified in the absence of textual information.

This term is unnecessarily hyperbolic, since the polities involved are merely typical states. We have long known that, at their peaks, cities like Tikal and Calakmul were the capitals oflarge regional states (Marcus 1973, 1976a). The point here is that the smaller units into which they occasionally fragmented were not usually states at all. Like the Postclassic Mixtec cacicazgos, these former subject provinces should be considered no more than principalities or petty kingdoms. ) a: Cycles in the Calakmul Region 1 During the period 300 BC-AD 200 in the northern Peten, two large chiefly centers arose only 38 km from each other.

Called Tomb 1, it contained the skeleton of a man at least 30 years of age, lying fully extended in a rolled mat (fig. 21). His wrapped body had been placed on five dishes that elevated him above the floor; more elaborate vessels had been set around the skeleton. The most spectacular offerings were three jade mosaic masks- one originally made for his face, one for his chest, and a third for his belt. Spiny oyster shell, a stingray spine, and a pearl were included as offerings. The tomb also had been equipped with a Aegean archaeologists are not in agreement as to whether Mycenaean society was a large state or something less (see discussion in Marcus, this volume); nevertheless, Mycenaean rulers clearly lived in impressive palaces, like that of King Nestor at Pylos.

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