Archaeologists search the world - and places beyond - for mysterious remnants of the past. Their digs unearth all manner of artifacts, and a persistent archaeologist will research commonplace historical items alongside rare and powerful relics.
Artifacts provide invaluable insight into the history of the world, but some collectors are more than willing to assign a monetary value to them. After documenting finds in their journal, archaeologists can sell the items they retrieve to vendors and museum curators for extra money.
Archaeology is a secondary profession - anyone can learn to investigate and assemble the ruins of the past, no matter how many other professions they've devoted themselves to.
All archaeologists begin by surveying maps of Azeroth to find the locations of promising dig sites, and then investigating those sites on foot along with survey tools in an attempt to narrow down the location of the most precious historical fragments in that area. Different locations provide different types of historical artifacts - and different rewards.
Archaeologists who hone their craft over time recover increasingly more valuable and rare items, and their knowledge about the world and past of Azeroth grows alongside their collection of relics.
After you've acquired the archaeology skill, you'll see the location of viable dig sites on your map. Each site is represented by a shovel icon. To find your dig, start by traveling to a shovel icon on your map.
When you arrive at the dig site, your map will show the general location that you should dig in. Travel to any spot in that area, and choose 'survey' from your professions menu.
Your telescope and monitoring device will appear, showing a color (red = far, yellow = closer, green = very close) to indicate how far away you are from the dig spot. The telescope will always point in the direction of the dig spot, and the distance monitor will help you determine how close you are.
Keep moving, and keep surveying. When you're really close to the dig site, surveying will unearth it, and you'll get fragments of the relics you've come to find. Dig sites regularly have more than one find.
As you uncover more fragments, you'll get closer to reconstructing an artifact. When you're able to completely reconstruct an artifact, you'll get a reward, and the item's history will be reflected in the archaeology section of your professions menu.