Post-excavation analysis of the Curtain Theatre in Shoreditch, which staged some of Shakespeare’s plays (see CA 316), has revealed new clues to how the Elizabethan playhouse was used. Among the key discoveries revealed by MOLA archaeologists was that the theatre’s stage was the same length as a modern-day fencing piste – 14m from stage left to stage right, and 4.75m deep – making it perfect for performing elaborate fight scenes.
In the first ‘Science Notes’ (CA 333), we discussed the identification of a possible female Viking warrior using ancient DNA analysis. This is a guaranteed way to confirm sex in human remains, but can be costly, time-consuming, and destructive to the bone, meaning that it is not feasible when a project needs to determine the sex of a large number of skeletons.
Seven finds uncovered in Wrexham and Flintshire during 2015 and 2016 have been declared Treasure by the Coroner for North-east Wales. The discoveries, dated from the Roman through to the post-medieval period, include a coin hoard as well as fine medieval jewellery.
The Treasure Act and the Portable Antiquities Scheme have released their annual reports, and the number of new finds made by members of the public has reached its highest level since the Act was first made law 20 years ago (see CA 331). Overall, there were 1,120 Treasure finds and a further 81,914 archaeological finds […]
In last month’s ‘Science Notes’ we took you on a tour of the Oxford Radiocarbon Accelerator Unit, discussing the intricacies of radiocarbon dating. There is the risk of portraying the process as fixed and static, but it is always being updated with new treatments and techniques – to make the method even more precise and […]
Over the decades there have been tantalising hints about the Emperor Nero (r. AD 54-68) and his possible connections with the Roman city of Calleva Atrebatum in modern-day Silchester. Now archaeologists at the University of Reading have uncovered more evidence to support this idea. Professor Michael Fulford and teams from the University of Reading having […]
In April, a survey was conducted on the 1,800 gravestones in Dundee Howff cemetery by the Dundee Howff Conservation Group, aided by archaeologist Dr Oliver O’Grady of OJT Heritage. The aim was to create a detailed map of the site and to research the origins of some of the headstones, as well as the generations […]
Richard III was reburied in Leicester Cathedral in 2015 (see CA 303), but his original resting place has not been forgotten. The site of Leicester’s Greyfriars church, underneath that now-legendary car park, has been granted protection by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport on the advice of Historic England. ‘The site of Greyfriars […]
A team from the University of Bristol, led by Cat Jarman and Mark Horton, is reanalysing the Viking site at Repton in Derbyshire and challenging previously held theories about it. Repton was first excavated between 1974 and 1993 by Martin Biddle and Birthe Kjølbye-Biddle in order to investigate the Anglo-Saxon origins of St Wystan’s Church; […]
During November, Wessex Archaeology, with the support of the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO), returned to Barrow Clump – a Neolithic settlement on Salisbury Plain reused as a burial site during the early Bronze Age and the Anglo-Saxon period – to salvage archaeological remains that are under threat from the activity of tunnelling badgers. This time […]