Reviews

The-Land-of-the-White-Horse

Review – The Land of the White Horse: visions of England

The White Horse at Uffington, a giant, sinuous hill figure (or, if you prefer, a geoglyph on a par with the Nazca Lines of Peru) has mystified and inspired in equal measure for centuries. Once thought to mark the victory of Alfred’s Saxon army over the Danes, investigations in the late 1980s and 1990s placed it between the late Bronze Age and middle Iron Age.

Knole-Revealed

Review – Knole Revealed: archaeology and discovery at a great country house

Knole is a house with a long and historically significant past. Since the present house was built in 1446, it has had many different phases: from the archiepiscopal palace of Thomas Bourchier in the 15th century, and a royal palace of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I in the 16th century, to a great Jacobean house by the early 1600s.

MIning-and-Quarrying-in-Neolithic-Europe

Review – Mining and Quarrying in Neolithic Europe: a social perspective

These 12 quite disparate papers cover mining/quarrying of flint, chert, and other fine-grained silicic rocks within the British Isles (and Norway), although French flint-mining is necessarily discussed. More basic rocks, notably the Preseli Hills dolerite and Lake District volcaniclastics (Group VI axes and bracers), and the Mesolithic to Neolithic transition are also explored.

Excavations-at-Oxford-Castle

Review – Excavations at Oxford Castle, 1999-2009

Built in 1071, Oxford Castle was an imposing fortification with one of the largest mottes in the country. Largely abandoned by the late 16th century – though it was briefly refortified in the Civil War – the castle ultimately evolved into a prison that operated until 1996. When this institution closed, redevelopment of the site gave Oxford Archaeology the opportunity to carry out a decade of investigations between 1999 and 2009 – uncovering finds spanning the 11th century to the present day.

Seahenge--A-Journey

Review – Seahenge: a journey

Terse, heightened prose relates a set of nested journeys: a Beaker chief to his death and hinted excarnation, his daughter with his body to death-rites at Woodhenge, and the poet’s pilgrimage from his Cotswold heimat to Holme-next-the-Sea on the East Anglian coast.

The-Prehistory-of-Britain-and-Ireland

Review – The Prehistory of Britain and Ireland

This is a thoroughly revised, weighty second edition, and can be regarded as a companion piece to Richard Bradley’s recently co-authored and more broadly focused The Later Prehistory of North-west Europe (2015). This book concentrates on those few islands on the western fringes, blinking in and out of Europe, and proceeds to examine their history closely.

Personifying-Prehistory

Review – Personifying Prehistory: relational ontologies in Bronze Age Britain and Ireland

Professor Joanna Brück has produced a fresh textbook of the Bronze Age that builds a complex picture of the period from the personal up to the broader landscape in Britain and Ireland. Joanna explores the period through the intricacies of the relationships between people, objects, structures, and landscapes. This contrasts with the standard approach, which focuses on overviews and the ‘bigger picture’, often framed by questions of power and control.

The--Prittlewell-princely-burial

Review – The Prittlewell princely burial: excavations at Priory Crescent, 2003

In 2003, an excavation by MOLA (Museum of London Archaeology) discovered a spectacular Anglo-Saxon burial chamber at Prittlewell, near Southend-on-Sea. Since then, expert analysis of the burial and its contents has indeed yielded a vast array of new information – the result of which is this absorbing monograph, which is packed with insights from the scientific studies that have been undertaken on the finds.

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