Robin Derricourt’s book is an overview of current and past research on the nature of the evidence for children in prehistory. As he points out, children are likely to have comprised about 50% of the population of most prehistoric societies, and so it is high time they were studied to the same degree as adults.
Over the recent past there has been a flurry of literature concerned with the Neolithic of the British Isles, each book promoting a new interpretation on the life and death of its people. This book is no exception. The literature has clearly shown that the Neolithic is a complex world of social relations and entanglement with ramifications to our present: we are products of this significant period in our history.
The decades leading up to the Roman conquest of Britain must have been a dynamic and turbulent time, a period of tribal manoeuvrings, with alliances made and loyalties tested in the face of increasing political and material influence from the Continent. From an archaeological perspective, however, the period can be frustratingly bland, with many sites in southern Britain lacking closely dated ceramics, giving only a hedge-betting chronology either side of AD 43. That late Iron Age Calleva presents solid evidence for pre-Conquest occupation, with more than a hint of the political and social complexities, is just one of the aspects that makes this a welcome and exciting volume.
For the past two decades, Brighton Museum & Art Gallery has had no dedicated space exploring the area’s archaeology. Now, though, thanks to a long-running campaign and a gift from a local benefactor, a stunning new gallery has just been opened. Carly Hilts went along to find out more.
In last month’s column I highlighted some of my favourite covers from issues 101-200 (1986- 2005). Now I pick up where I left off, continuing my explorations of this era through the pages of Current Archaeology, and roving in time from the 3rd millennium BC to the 18th century AD, and in space from northern Scotland to the south coast of England.
Modern Bath Abbey overlies the site of what was one of the largest cathedrals in medieval England. Now its remains, together with traces of the Anglo-Saxon monastery that preceded it, have been brought to light once more. Kirsten Egging Dinwiddy, Bob Davis, Cai Mason, Bruce Eaton, Sophie Clarke, and Marek Lewcun explain.
Given the recent cold weather, the discovery of a massive underground ‘ice house’, unearthed next to Regent’s Park in London, seems rather fitting. Built in the late 18th century, the subterranean chamber escaped damage during the Blitz bombings that destroyed the houses that stood above it, as well as local rebuilding in the 1960s. It was recently rediscovered by MOLA archaeologists working on behalf of Great Marlborough Estates during the residential development of Regent’s Crescent.
A cemetery excavated on the site of New Covent Garden Market in Nine Elms, near Battersea, is illuminating the lives of some of 19th-century London’s poorest inhabitants. The investigation, which uncovered nearly 100 burials, was carried out by Wessex Archaeology as part of modernisation work on the site by the VINCI St Modwen, in partnership with the Covent Garden Market Authority.
Two decorated Roman lead coffins have been uncovered during recent work at a quarry in Surrey. Only a few hundred burials involving such caskets are known from the whole of Britain, with these latest examples discovered by Wessex Archaeology during work on behalf of Sibelco, a raw materials company.
A figurine thought to be Britain’s only known example depicting the Celtic god Cernunnos has been found during the excavation of a late Iron Age/early Roman settlement in Cambridgeshire.