The potential contributions which imitative experiments can make to archaeology are far greater in scope, complexity, and overall "value" than is commonly realized. A sketch of some of these potential contributions is given and, in support of the claims advanced, a method of measuring the efficiency of hand operated implements is described and then applied in a comparison of different agricultural practices. The results show that experiments can provide important data unobtainable by traditional research methods and aid in the analysis of past subsistence and technological systems.
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