Standing monuments and sites, particularly earthworks, may be surveyed (measured and recorded) in order to obtain a permanent record of the site, sometimes as a preliminary to excavation. There are various means of recording – from making sketch plans using one’s pace as a measure, to more accurate plans using a variety of instruments, the most basic being measuring tapes and ranging rods. A level can be used to make drawings of the contours of the area by taking readings of successive points. Besides measured drawings, photography and making written notes are important parts of surveying.

A brief guide to field survey techniques.

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