Fieldwork

Category archives for Fieldwork

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…

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…

Old Masters of Quartz

Wednesday was another day guest-digging at one of Mattias Pettersson & Roger Wikell’s sites in the Tyresta woods, this one in the huge denuded area of the great forest fire. Otherworldly scenery! It’s the unusually high site discussed here three years ago by Mattias. And since we’re dealing with seal hunters in an area with…

Roger Wikell, Kenneth Ihrestam and Sven-Gunnar Broström during a recent documentation session with oblique lighting in Småland. Photograph by Emelie Svenman. Many important categories of archaeological site are never discovered by academic archaeologists. In the case of wetland sacrifices, it’s simply because nobody’s figured out a method to look for them. We just have to…

Yesterday I did another hour with my metal detector in the disused potato patch where I found a 17th century coin in September 2008. No luck really this time: the only coin I found dates from 1973 and the rest of the stuff wasn’t much older than that. But I did make one unusual find:…

In front, a boulder upon which I found cupmarks. Behind, a Bronze Age burnt mound consisting of fire-cracked stones. In order to study the landscape situation of something you need to know precisely where it is. This poses a problem when it comes to Bronze Age sacrificial finds, because they are almost never made by…