Difference Between Archaeology and Anthropology


Main Difference

The main difference between Archeology and Anthropology is that Archaeology is the study of earlier cultural events of people, whereas Anthropology is the study of behavior, development, and the relationship of humanity.

Archaeology vs. Anthropology

Archeology is the study of past human culture. Anthropology is the study of humans, their development, and social interaction. The sub-disciplines of archeology comprise of Ethnoarchaeology, Archaeometry, and Historical archeology. The sub-fields of anthropology include Linguistic, Biological, and Cultural anthropology. Archeology is an interdisciplinary science that finds its relationship with biology, law, and geology. Anthropology has no collaboration with other disciplines.

The processes used in archeology consist of four steps: remote sensing, field visit, excavation, and evaluation. Anthropology applies many techniques. Archeology emphasis past happenings of people, whereas anthropology focuses on both past and present events. Archeology investigates architectural remnants like previous pottery, cave paintings, while anthropology does not discuss human remnants.


The person who researches on archeology or past culture is called archeologist. The person who researches on anthropology or human relationships and behavior is called an anthropologist. The responsibility of archeologist includes preservation of historical societies, whereas anthropologist does not preserve any societal place but lives in the community to observe their culture. Archeology aims to study past things of humankind, while anthropology seeks to discuss human behavior and activities.

Comparison Chart

Study of earlier human civilization is known as ArchaeologyStudy of humans and their history is known S Anthropology
Historical archeology, ethnoarchaeologyCultural and linguistic anthropology
Other Fields
Biology, geology, law,No collaboration with other fields
Techniques Used
Remote sensing, Field visit, Excavation, interpretMany processes
Characteristics Of
Human culture from pastPast and present humans
Architectural remnantsNo remnants
One Who Studies
Focus Area
Materials remain of pastHuman activities and behavior

What is Archaeology?

Archeology is a branch of science which deals with the study of examination, discovery, and understanding of remnants of past from human life. The term finds its origin in the Greek word ‘archaiologia’ where ‘archaio’ denotes ‘ancient’ and ‘logos’ indicate ‘science or study.’ It is an investigation of ancient times and studying the human culture of earlier times. Its focus is to preserve the history of the modern nation and future people. Archeology is not only related to customs and social disciplines; it is a desire.

Archeologists are the person who investigates, recover, and shields signs and artifacts from human’s past events. The researcher’s work is to interpret skeletons, pottery, cave paintings, and substances of ruin constructions. The experts elaborate on the connection of past things with the present situation of people. They study the history, customs, and living nature of humans.

The preservation of archeological sites also comes under this discussion. In the united states of America, archeology comes as a sub-branch of anthropology. In Europe, archeology is discussed under the anthropology. The sub-disciplines of archeology include historical archeology, ethnoarchaeology, and archaeometry.

What is Anthropology?

Anthropology is the branch of science which deals with the study of humans where the focus area is their culture, behavior, development, and their relationships with animals. The term finds its origin in the Greek word ‘anthrōpos’ where ‘anthros’ defines ‘mankind,’ and ‘logos’ defines ‘science and study.’ It is the study of people all over the world. The focus is on how they are living now and how they had lived in the past. It defines people’s behavior, communication, social interaction, and their adaptation to different conditions and environments.


  • Biological Anthropology: Its primary concern is the evolution of humans. Its research area includes early signs of humankind, examine genetics, study primates, and investigate variances in humans. Some experts also visit the site to observe the demographics of the population. It is used to identify some essential factors of infection or disease or food conditions at that time. Its other name is physical anthropology.
  • Cultural Anthropology: The study area is the traditions, cultures, and norms of people. Its emphasis on cultural practices from small villages to open urban spaces. Its experts stay in different societies and observe them and collect data.
  • Linguistic Anthropology: It studies how people communicate with one another. The researcher notices their style and language practices. They observe verbal, non-verbal communication, a difference of language in cultures, and the role of language in different societies.

Key Differences

  1. Archeology deals with the study of past events and the culture of human beings, whereas anthropology deals with the study of humans and their social behavior.
  2. The sub-disciplines of archaeology include Historical, Ethnoarchaeology, and Archaeometry archeology. In comparison, the sub-disciplines of anthropology include Biological, Cultural, and Linguistic anthropology.
  3. Archeology collaborates with other fields like biology, geology, and law; on the flip side, there is no collaboration of anthropology with other fields.
  4. Archeology study includes remote sensing, surveys, and evaluation of the reviews; on the other hand, anthropology applies a vast range of processes.
  5. Archeology is a characteristic of human past happenings; conversely, anthropology is a characteristic of human past and present events.
  6. Archeology studies human remnants and artifacts like pottery, cave paintings, and remaining skeleton; on the other hand, anthropology does not cover the human remnants.
  7. An archeologist is a person who studies archeology, whereas the person who studies anthropology is called an anthropologist.
  8. Archeology focuses on past things of humans. Conversely, anthropology focuses on human actions and attitudes.


Archeology and Anthropology both are branches of science. Archeology is the study of historical events of past, human remnants, and their preservation. Anthropology is the study of human behavior, their bonding with other animals, and their social interaction.

Harlon Moss

Harlon currently works as a quality moderator and content writer for Difference Wiki. He graduated from the University of California in 2010 with a degree in Computer Science. Follow him on Twitter @HarlonMoss