Features

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Science Notes – Studying the stones of Stonehenge

Lithological provenancing has featured heavily in the pages of Current Archaeology recently. In one of last month’s features, we discussed the recent evidence behind the potential origins of the Stonehenge bluestones, and this month we are examining the source of the monument’s celebrated sarsens. As we have yet to explore petrology or geochemistry within ‘Science Notes’, I thought it a good opportunity to rectify this and delve into the details of some of the techniques used for these projects.

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Examining Norman nutrition

A project – led by Dr Elizabeth Craig-Atkins from the University of Sheffield, and Dr Richard Madgwick and Dr Ben Jervis from the University of Cardiff – has examined the impact of the Norman Conquest on diet. Using finds excavated in Oxford and dated to between the 10th and 13th centuries, the team applied a multiproxy analytical approach, combining ceramic residue analysis, isotope analysis of both human and animal bones, incremental isotope analysis of tooth dentine, and palaeopathological analysis of skeletal remains.

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Medieval fairground found at Latton Priory

A survey of the area around the site of an Augustinian priory near Harlow, Essex, has uncovered the location of an annual medieval fair granted to the priory’s patron by Edward III in 1332.

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Discovering a lost Viking waterway

New research involving a combination of geophysical mapping, sediment sampling, and the study of place-names has identified a network of waterways that ran through West Mainland Orkney in the Viking and late Norse period.

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Iron Age activity at Wintringham Park

Excavations at Wintringham Park, Cambridgeshire, have revealed evidence of ongoing occupation at the site throughout much of the late Iron Age. Located on clayland to the east of St Neots, above the Ouse Valley, the site offers a significant opportunity to enhance our understanding of this region in later prehistory.

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Heritage from home – September

As a growing number of museums and heritage sites reopen, we are, of course, looking forward to visiting them in person, but there is still a wealth of ways that the internet can bring archaeology from all over the world to your door. Amy Brunskill has compiled more resources to help you explore the past from the comfort of your home, as well as a list of some of the latest places that are welcoming visitors again.

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Between the cracks

Investigations beneath the floorboards of Oxburgh Hall, a great moated country house near King’s Lynn, have revealed a remarkable time capsule of finds spanning 500 years, from high-status manuscripts to Tudor textiles. Anna Forrest describes some of the highlights.

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Searching for the Storegga tsunami in Doggerland

The Storegga tsunami, caused by the sudden shift of a Scotland-sized section of the seabed off the coast of modern-day Norway, raged across the North Sea approximately 8,150 years ago. Archaeological evidence for this event has been found in onshore sediments across western Scandinavia, in parts of north-east Britain, and even as far away as Greenland. But, although models of the tsunami suggest that it possibly affected parts of the southern North Sea, no concrete evidence for it had been found in this region – until now.

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New clues at Navan Fort

Recent survey work at Navan Fort, County Armagh, has revealed a series of previously unknown monumental structures from the Iron Age, as well as new evidence of medieval activity.

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