Download Archaeology in British Towns: From the Emperor Claudius to by Patrick Ottaway PDF

By Patrick Ottaway

During this authoritative quantity, Patrick Ottaway attracts on his wide adventure of city archaeology to teach how our belief of the early background of British cities has been appreciably replaced over the past twenty 5 years.
in keeping with his daily involvement within the box, this learn highlights one of the most vital discoveries and examine issues of contemporary years, exhibiting how long-term city learn initiatives have published new information regarding cities and the lives in their inhabitants.
good illustrated and hugely readable, this quantity bargains a sequence of enticing and evocative case reviews. It additionally highlights the paintings of the city archaeologist, and the issues inherent in keeping our prior, while the pursuits of archaeology and estate improvement conflict.

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Extra info for Archaeology in British Towns: From the Emperor Claudius to the Black Death

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Ultimately responsibility for the conduct of the excavation lies with the director, romantic or otherwise, who must not only ensure the making of a full and consistent record, appropriate to clear research objectives, but also evaluate and interpret that record to the best of his or her ability Chronology and dating If archaeologists are to use their carefully recorded sequences of deposits and structures to make a significant contribution to the writing of history, then it is clearly crucial that they develop techniques for accurate dating.

This combination can be found on one of Britain’s richest sites for the study of the early urban environment, the Anglo-Scandinavian town at York (see pp. 146–55), where deposits excavated at sites such as Lloyds Bank (6–8 Pavement)28 and 16–22 Coppergate consisted entirely of organic matter, including wood, all manner of plant remains and dung from various sources. As anyone who has worked on these deposits will know, they are quite unlike anything else in archaeology, if only because of the smell which will be guaranteed to get you a seat to yourself on the bus home!

On more impervious subsoils, such as clay, this leaching process may be more restricted and depth correspondingly greater. If, moreover, the water table is above subsoil level, normal decay processes may be very substantially impeded and the preservation of organic matter, including structural timbers, may contribute to an unusual depth of deposit such as those to be found in the centre of York or on the banks of the Thames in London. A survey of previous excavations is again a necessary starting point for assessing the survival of deposits in a town and the archaeological potential of particular sites.

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