Festival of Leicestershire and Rutland Archaeology 2019 programme of events announced! Saturday 29th June – Sunday 28th July, 2019 The programme for the 2019 Festival of Leicestershire and Rutland Archaeology – the biggest Festival of its kind in Britain- has been announced. Throughout the four weeks of July more than 90 events will be held […]
The 2,300-year-old bark shield is the only one of its kind ever found in Europe A unique bark shield from the Iron Age has been discovered by archaeologists from the University of Leicester, the only one of its kind ever found in Europe. The shield, which measured 670 x 370mm in the ground, was found […]
This year is the 80th anniversary of the final year of Kathleen Kenyon’s seminal excavations at Jewry Wall. For International Women’s Day, we take a moment to reflect on the significance of her work in Leicester… Kathleen Kenyon (1906-78) was a gifted archaeologist and pioneer of excavation methodology who made an important contribution to our […]
We’ve excavated on a wide range of projects in 2018. Here we showcase 12 images taken throughout the year, highlighting our main discoveries, click on the images to read more from each project.
New evidence of Neolithic, Roman and Anglo-Saxon activity found in community archaeological dig at Market Bosworth. In 2016, the Bosworth Links project set out to reveal the, then, poorly understood development and habitation of Market Bosworth. The main research goals, to learn more about what was going on in the area before the town was […]
This video is of a lecture entitled “The Treasure Act and Portable Antiquities Scheme: experience from South of the Border” that was given by Roger Bland, Keeper of the Department of Britain, Europe and Prehistory at the British Museum joint with the National Museums Scotland, to the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland in 2014 on the application of the Treasure Act and the development of the Portable Antiquities Scheme to record discovered artefacts.
In our last session of ‘A Beginner’s Guide’ we looked at the topic of human remains on archaeological sites.
In this episode of ‘Material World’ from BBC Radio 4, the presenter interviews two archaeologists about the impact of the Burial Act 1857 upon archaeology.
Further reading which may be of interest includes:
- Human Remains Advice (English Heritage)
- Human Osteoarchaeology (English Heritage)
- Human Remains (Church Care)
- BAJR guides including a Basic Overview for the Recovery of Human Remains from Sites Under Development and A Field Guide to the Excavation of Inhumated Remains
- Burial Act 1857 (Legislation.gov.uk)
- Disused Burial Grounds (Amendment) Act 1981 (Legislation.gov.uk)
- The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA) (US National Parks Service)
Those of you who are interested in the archaeology of Roman Britain may wish to take a look at the walking trail around Roman Leicester, which is free to download from The Jewry Wall website. There is also a free app (available for both iOS and Android) called ‘Jewry Wall – An Adventure in Time’ which aims to bring Leicester’s Roman bath site to life in a way never seen before. Join Jenny and Javid for a mission to discover the past using fun, interactive games and activities for the whole family.
In the second session of this course we looked at the practicalities of archaeological excavation, as well as important concepts which underpin our understanding of archaeological sites. Key amongst these was the concepts of ‘context’ and ‘stratigraphy’.
Context, to quote from the Society for American Archaeology, “refers to the relationship that artifacts have to each other and the situation in which they are found… Context is what allows archaeologists to understand the relationship between artifacts on the same site, as well as how different archaeological sites are related to each other.”
Each individual archaeological context is given an unique number to identify it and is generally recorded on a context sheet. This process is explained in this video by Archaeosoup:
Stratigraphy is “the study of layered sedimentary rocks (called strata) but may also include layered igneous rocks,” and is important to both archaeology and geology. This science follows several fundamental principles (explained in more detail in the linked webpage).
In this short video clip, UNC archaeologist Theresa McReynolds explains how studying stratigraphy helps archaeologists determine the relative ages of artifacts.
A common method of plotting archaeological contexts and their relationships to one another is using the Harris Matrix.
In the first session we looked at non-invasive archaeological techniques such as desk-based assessment, fieldwalking, geophysics and landscape survey. This video clip from ‘Time Team’ discusses the use of geophysics in archaeology and the evolution of the different techniques through time:
If you wish to find out more about some of these non-invasive techniques, the following links may be of interest to you: