Fieldwork

Category archives for Fieldwork

Spent the day digging with my friends Mattias Pettersson and Roger Wikell like so many times before. I like to join them on their sites for a day every now and then (2007, 2008, 2010). The two are mainly known as Mesolithic scholars, but I have been with them on a Neolithic and a Bronze…

Three Days Digging in a Cave

Few Swedish caves contain any known archaeology, and those that do mainly feature Mesolithic and Neolithic habitation layers. The Pukberget (“Devil’s Mountain”) cave near Enköping is a rare exception. In the mid-20th century a fox hunter crawled into the cave and felt his way around. His questing hands encountered something on a ledge which he…

Boggy Test Pit

In the Lake Mälaren area of Sweden, you rarely find any large pieces of Bronze Age metalwork in graves or at settlement sites. When the beautiful larger objects occur – axe heads, spear heads, swords, neck rings, belt ornaments – they almost exclusively come from odd find contexts that I for one feel comfortable with…

Today I did four hours of metal-detecting at a site in Vårdinge where a Wendelring bronze torque from about 600 BC has been found. Reiner Knizia’s popular card game Lost Cities has a thinly applied archaeological theme, and on the board is actually an image of a Wendelring torque just like the one from Vårdinge.…

My Check List for Metal Detecting

Once I went metal-detecting without my GPS. Luckily the site was not far from my home and I found only one object worth collecting, so I could mark the spot with a stick and return after dinner to get the coordinates. Another time I forgot my rubber boots and was confused by my detector’s strange…

Lost On A Fieldwork Gamble

Success and failure in archaeological fieldwork is a graded scale. I wrote about this in autumn 2008: My excavation at Sättuna has taken an interesting turn. I’m not feeling particularly down about it, but the fact is that we’re getting the second worst possible results. The worst result would be to mobilise all this funding…

Newish Finds from Old Uppsala

[More about archaeology, metaldetecting; arkeologi, metallsökare, Uppsala.] The view from my second investigation area. The great barrows were erected about AD 600. I spent Tuesday and Wednesday metal-detecting for my buddy John Ljungkvist on some of the most storied soil in Sweden: Old Uppsala. Archaeology and early historical sources unanimously point this village out as…

Teaching and Going Home

Spent 5.5 hours on site in Wales today and 7 hours by car, train and plane to get from there to Skavsta airport. I’ve got another couple of hours by bus and train before I’m home. The trains I rode in the UK were on time but often did not leave from the platforms indicated…

Wednesday in the Trenches

Professor Nancy Edwards and associates take stock of the western trench at the end of the day’s work. Today offered much better weather, but due to permit trouble very little metal detecting. Instead I’ve been “cleaning” with the students, which basically means slow removal of soil using a trowel and a brush. I found a…

Digging in Wales, Watching Sb Crisis

I’m in north-east Wales for a few days’ work on a Universities of Chester and Bangor dig. We’ve had a rainy day, which meant that we couldn’t work effectively for very long. But I did some metal detecting, finding lead spatters that may have to do with 18th century repairs to the 9th century Pillar…