Biological criteria can also serve as a means for relative dating.Fossils are useful because certain assemblages of species are characteristic of specific geological eras.This content is available through Read Online (Free) program, which relies on page scans. Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. Stratigraphic dating is accomplished by interpreting the significance of geological or archaeological strata, or layers.The method begins with the careful drawing and description of strata (the geological or archaeological profile).Seriation is an archaeological technique involving the description of stylistic changes in artifacts and of changes in the popularity of distinct styles in order to accurately describe the sequence of variation over time.
Other techniques are occasionally useful, for example, historical or iconographic references to datable astronomical events such as solar eclipses (archaeoastronomy).
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This information may then be used to surmise the relative age of unstratified deposits (e.g., surface sites).
Technological changes can be used for relative dating of archaeological material.