Stratigraphy is the oldest of the relative dating methods that archaeologists use to date things.Stratigraphy is based on the law of superposition--like a layer cake, the lowest layers must have been formed first.Dating is not necessary to demonstrate that evolution is a fact.

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Even when the absolute dates are available, we have to supplement the information with relative dating.

The various methods of relative dating are; This method depends on the common observation that the height of the habitational area increases as the people continue to live at the same place.

Basing on this principle, the cultural assemblages found in different layers can be assigned a chronological personality. In practice it is found that the mounds are disturbed9 by all sorts of pits and dumps.

For example, if the cultural contents of the lower deposit are Mauryan in character, appropriately this deposit may be assigned a date between 400-200 B. Similarly, if the cultural equipment of the upper deposit are of the Sunga period, this deposit has to placed between 200-73 B. Quite often, the archaeologist decided the change of stratum on the basis of the feed of the deposit.

Anthropologists use both objective (scientific) and subjective (interpretive) methods in their research.

As scientists, anthropologists systematically collect information to answer specific research questions.

In relative dating, the temporal order of a sequence of events is determined, allowing the investigator to surmise whether a particular object or event is older or younger than, or occurred before or after, another object or event.

In absolute or chronometric dating, the investigator establishes the age of an object or event in calendar years.

For example, JJA Worsaae used this law to prove the Three Age System.

For more information on stratigraphy and how it is used in archaeology, see the Stratigraphy glossary entry.

Archaeologists use many different techniques to determine the age of a particular artifact, site, or part of a site.