ar·​chae·​ol·​o·​gy | \ ˌär-kē-ˈä-lə-jē How to pronounce archaeology (audio) \
variants: or archeology

Definition of archaeology

1 : the scientific study of material remains (such as tools, pottery, jewelry, stone walls, and monuments) of past human life and activities
2 : remains of the culture of a people : antiquities the archaeology of the Incas

Other Words from archaeology

archaeological \ ˌär-​kē-​ə-​ˈlä-​ji-​kəl How to pronounce archaeology (audio) \ adjective
archaeologically \ ˌär-​kē-​ə-​ˈlä-​ji-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce archaeology (audio) \ adverb
archaeologist \ ˌär-​kē-​ˈä-​lə-​jist How to pronounce archaeology (audio) \ noun

Examples of archaeology in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web This free interactive exhibit explains the science of archaeology, and features artifacts from several dig sites in Columbia, both prehistoric and historic. Hartford Courant, 6 May 2022 But photogrammetry is also having a major impact there, said Radek Palonka, a professor of archaeology at Jagiellonian University in Poland who has studied Native American rock art in the Mesa Verde region for several years. Tom Metcalfe, NBC News, 4 May 2022 The first is a series of rooms which strike you as a monumental archaeology of post-industrial decay. Luke Leitch, Vogue, 25 Apr. 2022 The Browns offered to help demonstrate the potential of experimental archaeology in this singular case—a gesture of goodwill and solidarity. Douglas Starr, Smithsonian Magazine, 29 Mar. 2022 Cultural material – art, architecture, artifacts, and archaeology – also preserve and reveal the shape of time., 16 Mar. 2022 Just like the archaeological investigations of early human sites, there are efforts underway to illuminate what life has been like aboard the space station through space archaeology. Ashley Strickland, CNN, 12 Mar. 2022 Laura, enchanted by archaeology, is hoping to see rock carvings that are 10,000 years old. WSJ, 4 Feb. 2022 Anne had a real appreciation for music and a love for archaeology. Jacques Kelly,, 25 Jan. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'archaeology.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of archaeology

1782, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for archaeology

French archéologie, from Late Latin archaeologia antiquarian lore, from Greek archaiologia, from archaio- + -logia -logy

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The first known use of archaeology was in 1782

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Last Updated

18 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Archaeology.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for archaeology


variants: or archeology \ ˌär-​kē-​ˈä-​lə-​jē \

Kids Definition of archaeology

: a science that deals with past human life and activities as shown by objects (as pottery, tools, and statues) left by ancient peoples

More from Merriam-Webster on archaeology

Nglish: Translation of archaeology for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of archaeology for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about archaeology


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