Antioch's civic coins were particularly abundant along a known trade routebut were also used more widely among neighboring cities than was previously thought, Neumann found. Her maps effectively followed the contraction of Antioch's political authority as the ancient city was eventually integrated into the Roman Empire.
Neumann hopes this work will encourage historians and archaeologists to think of new ways to use technology for research.
"I'm trying to help historians think outside the box," she said. "There's a huge movement in the digital humanities in general, and this research speaks to that. Using tools such as Google Earth to visualize the ancient world could also have ramifications for how we look at data today."
Neumann presented her findings at the annual meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America, held Jan. 2-5 in Chicago.
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