- Ph.D., 1999, Indiana University
- M.A., Indiana University
- B.A., Indiana University
I am an archaeologist who works closely with geologists. The goal is to build a working vocabulary and find appropriate analytical methodologies for archaeological problem-solving. As such my research is collaborative in nature. Almost every subdiscipline in geology has concepts, analytical methods and a knowledge base that can contribute to the solution of archaeological problems. There is a growing awareness that archaeological research is dependent on the geological constraints of specific physical environments.
My research is field-based with much of my fieldwork conducted in the Mediterranean Basin. Field support and sample storage in Greece is supplied by the Wiener Laboratory at the American School of Classical Studies at Athens. I specialize in the Greek Bronze Age (3,000 – 1,100 BC). I am particularly interested in the impact of rapid technological change on early urban development. In the formative stages of the Bronze Age we have an opportunity to better understand the emerging social organization that led to the elaborate citadels which mark the appearance of the Mycenaeans, ca. 1650 BC.
Recent three-year (2004-2007) collaborative funding through the National Endowment for the Humanities has enabled us to develop a research team. Drs. Haydn Murray and James Brophy at Indiana University, along with Dr. George Christidis, Technical University of Crete are combining their expertise in igneous petrology, clays and economic geology to source and characterize an important archaeological clay deposit on the island of Aegina, Greece.
Recent Research Projects
Over the past four years, I have been working with my geological colleague, Dr. James Brophy, to establish a source material data base for the Saronic Gulf portion of the South Aegean Volcanic Arc.
Specifically, this has amounted to collecting representative samples of all volcanic materials on the islands of Aegina, Poros, Milos and the peninsula of Methana. The minerals in these reference materials were then analyzed by electron microprobe techniques to develop a mineral composition databank against which mineral compositions in individual artifacts can be compared. Dr. Chusi Li, Director of the IU Microprobe Laboratory, conducts the probe analyses.
The databank is presently being developed in order to quantitatively provenance sample sets of Aeginetan Ware, an important Bronze Age structural ceramic presumed to originate on Aegina Island, Greece. Dr. Brophy and I use what we have come to term the Integrated Petrologic Approach to fully characterize the sources and characteristics of true Aeginetan Ware. We then compare these results with similar studies on sample sets of presumed Aeginetan Ware excavated throughout the Aegean and mainland Greece.
Sample sets to date include many of the well-known sites of the Argolid, such as Argos, Lerna, Tsoungiza, and Asine. In addition we have sample sets from the prehistoric portions of the Athens Acropolis; Asea, a sanctuary site in Arcadia; Ayia Irini, an important site on the island of Keos; Halieis, a Neolithic site in the Southern Argolid, and Kolonna, the large production center on Aegina Island. Contributing archaeologists include a range of international collaborators, along with American colleagues: Dr. Jeannette Forsén, Gothenburg University, Sweden; Drs. Gullög Nordquist and Christina Risberg, Uppsala University, Sweden; Drs. Florens Felten and Lydia Berger, University of Salzburg, Austria; Dr. Elizabeth Schofield, Cambridge, United Kingdom; Dr. John Camp, Director of the Athens Agora Excavations (ASCSA); Dr. Jerry Rutter, Dartmouth College; Dr. James Wright, Bryn Mawr College; Dr. John Papadopoulos, University of California, Dr. Susan Rotroff, Washington University, Dr. Michael Jameson, Stanford University and Dr. Daniel Pullen, Florida State University.
Aeginetan Ware Technology and Production
Fieldwork targeted specifically at defining the clay potential for Aegina along with comparative REE abundance data from sherds and samples have enabled us to locate the physical source for Aeginetan Ware on the island, an extensive Pliocene dacitic volcanoclastic flow.
Aeginetan clays are now being fired in a thermal gradient furnace. Samples are taken at each thermocouple and analyzed with X-ray diffraction. Changes in firing temperature and strategies, along with changes in clay utilization are demonstrated through comparative X-ray diffraction analysis of the fired clays and provenanced Aeginetan Ware sherds. In addition, physical property testing, such as modulus of rupture determination (collaboration with Dr. Bruce Douglas' Rock Mechanics Laboratory), particle size distribution, shrinkage and plasticity values allow us to discern the performance capabilities of these deposits.
Reconstruction of Greek Bronze Age Coastal Environments
Previous geoarchaeological analysis of the Pleistocene and Holocene stratigraphy of the Argive plain has delineated cycles of marine transgression/regression. Certain aspects of the Early Bronze Age reconstruction could equally apply to Holocene deltaic formation as suggested by Stanley and Warne (1997) on a global level.
Clay mineralogical analysis (X-ray diffraction and particle size analysis) by Dr. Murray have suggested that the depositional environment on the Bronze Age Argive plain is better explained as being deltaic. Isotope analysis of H and O in both parent rock and clay-rich sediments are now underway with Dr. Edward Ripley in order to further substantiate our conclusions.
Representative Publications and Abstracts
Brophy, J. and C. Shriner. (accepted). "Aeginetan Ware (AW) Provenancing Report: Characterization to Source Interpretation" . in L. Berger, in prep. Die Frühhelladisch II-Keramik von Ägina Kolonna (Working Title). (NEW Aegina Series: F. Felten (Hrsg.), Ägina-Kolonna. Forschungen und Ergebnisse Bd.?). Wien:Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften.
Christidis, G., H. Murray, C. Shriner, and J. Brophy. (accepted). "Source Clay Provenancing Report for Aeginetan Ware: Ceramic Characterization to Ceramic Provenancing" . in L. Berger, in prep. Die Frühhelladisch II-Keramik von Ägina Kolonna (Working Title). (NEW Aegina Series: F. Felten (Hrsg.), Ägina-Kolonna. Forschungen und Ergebnisse Bd.?). Wien:Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften.
Shriner, C., G. Christidis, and H. Murray. (accepted). "Ceramic Technology Report for Aeginetan Ware: Unraveling Archaeological Problems using Provenance and Processing" . in L. Berger, in prep. Die Frühhelladisch II-Keramik von Ägina Kolonna (Working Title). (NEW Aegina Series: F. Felten (Hrsg.), Ägina-Kolonna. Forschungen und Ergebnisse Bd.?). Wien:Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften.
Shriner, C.M., J. Brophy and R. Droppo. 2009. "The South Aegean Volcanic Arc (SAVA) and Aeginetan Ware Database Project" at http://www.indiana.edu/~sava) (2005-2009), for Institute of Aegean Prehistory (INSTAP) research grant, C. Shriner, PI.
Shriner, C., E. Elswick, E. Ripley, A. Schimmelman, and H. Murray. (In press). "Natural Environment as a Determinative Factor in Greek Early Helladic Cultural Change on the Argive Plain." in The Early Helladic Peloponnesos, Helike IV, ed. D. Katsonopoulou. Athens: Helike Society.
Christidis, G. E., C. M. Shriner, H. H. Murray, and J. G. Brophy. 2008. "TTT diagrams in Geoarchaeology: Unraveling Archaeological Problems using Provenance and Processing," in 235th American Chemical Society National Meeting and Exposition Program, April 6-10, 2008, New Orleans, La., p. 67.
Shriner, C.M., B.J. Douglas, E.R. Elswick, J.G. Brophy, G.E. Christidis, E. Hasaki, and H.H. Murray. 2008. "Correlation of Physical Properties for Aeginetan Ware with Compositional and Chemical Data from the Clay Source Deposit," in 235th American Chemical Society National Meeting and Exposition Program, April 6-10, 2008, New Orleans, La., p. 67.
Shriner, C.M., E.R. Elswick, E.M. Ripley, A. Schimmelmann, and H.H.Murray. 2007. "Natural Environment as a Determinative Factor in Aegean Early Bronze Age Cultural Change," in The 4th International Conference on Ancient Helike and Aigialeia: The Early Helladic Peloponnesos Abstracts, Sept. 1-3, 2007, Nikolaiika, Greece, p. 36.
Shriner, C. M., G. Christidis, J. Brophy, K. Finger, and H. Murray. 2007. "Clay Mineralogical Studies of the Source Material for Aeginetan Ware, Aegina, Greece," in The Clay Minerals Society, 44th Annual Meeting Program and Abstracts, June 2-7, 2007. Santa Fe, New Mexico, p.150.
Shriner, C. M., W. Carty, H. H. Murray, H. Lee, G. E. Christidis, and J. G. Brophy. 2005. "Microstructure and Mineralogy of Aeginetan Ware, " in The Clay Minerals Society, 42nd Annual Meeting Program and Abstracts, June 11-15, 2005, Burlington, Vermont, p.100.
Shriner, C. M., J. G. Brophy, H. H. Murray, G. E. Christidis, and R. I. Walker, 2005. "Aeginetan Ware Technology, Production, and Exchange: An Archaeological Reappraisal," in Archaeological Institute of America 106th Annual Meeting Abstracts, Vol. 28.
Awards and Honors
National Endowment for the Humanities, Three-year Collaborative Research Grant, 2004-2007.
Institute for Aegean Prehistory, Renewable Research Grant, 2003-2008.
Schrader Archaeological Endowment for Classical Archaeology, Indiana University, Travel Grants (2002-2009), Special Grant for Probe Analysis of Aeginetan Ware Sample Sets (2004).