Culture and Cosmos is a peer-reviewed academic journal in the history of astrology and cultural astronomy published by the Sophia Centre Press in partnership with the Sophia Centre for the Study of Cosmology in Culture, Faculty of Humanitiies and the Performing Arts, at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David

We are currently seeking submissions for future volumes of Culture and Cosmos.

Volume 21

Different Approaches to Cosmology in Archaeology and Their Application to Maltese Prehistory

Tore Lomsdalen


This paper outlines different ways archaeologists have engaged with notions of cosmology and worldview. It begins by highlighting the confusion over definitions of cosmology, particularly within archaeology and archaeoastronomy, and proposes a working definition that tries to be all-encompassing. This definition is then used to illustrate how different bodies of archaeological theory have touched upon the topic of cosmology either explicitly or implicitly. The list provided is not exhaustive but provides an overview of the range of scales (from artefact to landscape) as well as a level of engagement with cosmology (from implicit to explicit). Each of these instances is firstly described in general, followed by a more specific application to Maltese prehistory and its Temple Period. The paper, therefore, highlights the ways in which archaeologists have engaged with cosmology that can complement work done by archaeoastronomers and cultural astronomers. By drawing attention to the holistic and all-encompassing nature of cosmology it is hoped that further steps towards bridging the gaps between archaeology and archaeoastronomy can be taken.

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