Section Newsletter #3 – September

September 2015

Welcome to the September 2015 edition of the IOA World Archaeology Section Newsletter.

‘Off The Record’ World Archaeology Section Lunch time Discussions

Off the Record #5Every Thursday, 12pm, Room 412 – All Welcome!

We’re pleased to announce details of a brand new programme of lunchtime discussions for this term. In addition to the usual wide-ranging topics being discussed, a number of section staff members and post-graduate students are contributing to a 4-part special on megalithic monuments from around the world.

One of our main goals this year is to foster more input from the section post-graduate community – if you’re interested in talking please contact Andrew Brown to find out about available dates.

Upcoming programme for the autumn term

  • See programme on the right for up to date information


Project update: The Stones of Stonehenge

by Barney Harris

The Stones of Stonehenge

The spotted dolerite outcrop of Carn Goedog

In 2014, Geochemical comparison of Stonehenge bluestone fragments with naturally outcropping bluestone in W. Wales confirmed the location from which at least some of Stonehenge’s monoliths originated. Mike Parker Pearson, Kate Welham, Colin Richards and Josh Pollard initiated the Stones of Stonehenge project to investigate these locations and the surrounding landscape with survey and excavation.

Its findings so far

Evidence for quarrying has been unearthed at two sites in Pembrokeshire; the rhyolitic outcrop of Craig Rhosyfelin and the mountainous spotted dolerite crag of Carn Goedog. Findings from the project are due to published in December but in short, radiocarbon dates from the quarries indicate the main period of extraction was during the middle neolithic, some 400 years before the first phase of Stonehenge. This begs the question of what these stones were doing in the intervening period. The most likely scenario is that they were originally quarried for use in a local monument — the ‘first Stonehenge’ if you will — before later being removed and repurposed for the Stonehenge we know today. Where is this initial monument and under what conditions were these stone later removed? Only further research can tell.

Excavation of the quarry debris and Carn Goedog

The team

The project team comprised a large number of undergraduate students from UCL and Bournemouth University. In addition, specialists from around the country, including geomorphologists and geologists, visited throughout the 3-week long season. A small contingent of Danish students from the University of Copenhagen were also present.

The team was broadly split into four groups; one for each quarry site, one to undertake geophysical survey and one to excavate a potential round barrow in the area. Over the course of the three-weeks students got the opportunity to try their hand at excavation, planning and recording and a number of geophysical survey techniques including geophysical resistivity and magnetic survey.

Undergraduate students from UCL enjoy re-seeding and making good the Craig Rhosyfelin site after a hard days work.

Project update: New Surveys at Verulamium

by Kris Lockyear

Verulamium is the third biggest Roman town in Britain with an area of 80ha contained within the third century town walls. In 2013 we were able to survey the half of the Roman town which now lies within a public park in St Albans, Hertfordshire. This summer we were able to expand the survey into the area which is within the Gorhambury Estate owned by Lord Verulam, to whom we owe our thanks.

overall plan

The Community Archaeology Geophysics Group were able to survey 17.3ha using magnetometry and 4ha using Ground Penetrating Radar. It is probably going to take a further two seasons to complete the magnetometry survey. The results have been quite spectacular. The magnetometry survey has clearly detected a number of large corridor buildings, as well as smaller structures, roads, pits, and ditches.

day 18 context gprOne of the features that we are currently calling “the sinuous ditch” is possibly an aqueduct for the town. It is more muddy ditch than Pont du Gard, but still an important addition to the town’s urban geography. This year is the first time we have been able to supplement the magnetometry with GPR which has revealed house plans with excellent clarity. The results of survey were posted day-by-day on the project blog:

New Bookfront cover only

On Sept 1st Archaeology in Hertfordshire: Recent Research. A festschrift for Tony Rook was published by University of Hertfordshire Press edited by Kris Lockyear. It contains a wide variety of papers ranging from the prehistoric landscape around the important formative henge at Norton, the Iron Age and Roman site at Broom Hall Farm, the Anglo-Saxon site at Watton-at-Stone, the contribution of place name studies to the study of early Medieval meeting places in the country and the archaeology of pollards. It is a bargain at only £20!News & announcements

News & Announcements

Demonstrator in Pottery Technology – PGTA Position Available at the IOA

A Post Graduate Teaching Assistantship is available for the position of Demonstrator in Pottery Technology who will be responsible for supporting Graduate teaching on the Interpreting Pottery module (ARCLG112).

All PhD students are eligible, but the following areas of expertise would be an advantage:

  • A Master’s degree in archaeological materials analysis or artefact studies
  • At least two years experience of preparing an MPhil/PhD thesis on archaeological ceramics
  • Experience in the handling of pottery from several periods and geographic regions
  • Experience in the interpretation of pottery forming methods from macro-traces on sherds
  • Excellent skills in English language

Those interested should contact Louisa Goldsmith by Friday 25th September

PhD fellowships in the field of Urban societies in the past

Centre for Urban Network Evolutions (UrbNet), Aarhus Universitet, invites applications for up to 4 PhD scholarships in the field of “Urban societies in the past”. Deadline is 1st October 2015 

Read more and apply → 

British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship Competition 2015-16

2015-16 call for proposals will be open from 26 August 2015 to 7 October 2015.
The aim of the British Academy in making these awards is to offer opportunities for outstanding early career researchers to strengthen their experience of research and teaching in a university environment which will develop their curriculum vitae and improve their prospects of obtaining permanent lecturing posts by the end of the Fellowship.

Any queries about the application and submission process from students at the Institute of Archaeology should be directed to Jo Dullaghan. Initial proposal deadline is 30th September 2015.

More information

Digital Data Re-use Award 2015

Internet Archaeology and the Archaeology Data Service have teamed up to provide an Award that recognises the outstanding archaeological research being carried out through the re-use of digital data.

The Digital Data Re-use Award offers archaeological researchers the chance to promote their work and win the opportunity to publish, free of charge, in the premier open access journal Internet Archaeology

More information

Irene levi sala care archaeological foundation Grants-in-aid

The Irene Levi Sala CARE Archaeological Foundation is devoted to the furtherance of understanding the prehistory of Israel. In particular, the CARE Archaeological Foundation offers small grants to aid scholars in research concerning the Paleolithic and Neolithic prehistory of Israel, as well as studies in adjunct fields of research, including paleoanthropology, Quaternary geology, palynology, faunal and ethnobotanical analyses, and so forth, as long as they are limited to the Pleistocene and Holocene of Israel up to ca. 7,000 years BP.

Info and apply

New pre-doctoral, post-doctoral and senior fellowships at the Getty

The Getty Research Institute and the Getty Villa invite proposals for the 2016–2017 academic year residential grants and fellowships. Deadline is 1st October 2015.

More information

Career Opportunities in Bordeaux

Several recruitment opportunities are currently being promoted within the framework “Initiative of Excellence of the University of Bordeaux” (IdEx Bordeaux), granted by the French national program Investing for the future.

  • Post-doctoral fellowship program: it is addressed to high-profile international young candidates promoting their own project to be developed in one of the site research teams;
  • Junior Chairs: supporting young, high-profile international researchers in setting up a research activity within one of Bordeaux academic laboratories;
  • Visiting Scholars, expected to contribute with their unique expertise to the development of research projects, training programs, innovation in higher education, or technology transfer.

More information

Section research

Kris_Lockyear_3Lockyear, K et al. (2015)
Archaeology in Hertfordshire: Recent Research. A festschrift for Tony Rook

A_Panagioutou_1Panagiotou, A. (2015)
A comparative analysis of the decorated pottery of the second millennium BC Eastern Mediterranean
Unpublished PhD Thesis, University College London. Jan 2015.

Arroyo-KalinArroyo-Kalin, M. (2014)
Amazonian Dark Earths in Western Amazonia?
Archaeology International, 17, 58-60. doi:10.5334/ai.1709


Parker Pearson, M. et. al. (2015)
Council for British Archaeology

Conferences & Events

Conference: Climate Change and Human Society Resilience, Impact and Perceptions in the Past and Present

Interdisciplinary postgraduate conference, 4th – 5th December 2015
Durham University, Department of Archaeology

Conference website

Postgraduate Open Day at the Library of the Society of Antiquaries London

The Society of Antiquaries of London is planning a free postgraduate open day, to help young researchers discover the wealth of resources in our Library. The event will take place on Friday, 9 October 2015, from 11.00 to 16.00 (with a complementary lunch included). I am writing to you as a Fellow of the Society, to ask you to publicise this event to current and potential postgraduate students or to colleagues working with postgraduate students who may be interested in our resources.

More information

Conference: The Neolithic and Early Bronze Age Research Student Symposium

NEBARSS is an annual conference for postgraduate and early career researchers; the conference aims to promote PhD and Masters level research into the Neolithic and Early Bronze Age of Britain and Ireland.The 2015 NEBARSS Conference will be held at the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne on Friday 20th and Saturday 21st November 2015.

Conference website

Conference: Craft and Production in the European Iron Age

Conference with a regional focus on Britain, Central Europe and the Mediterranean. 25th – 27th September, 2015. Magdalene College and the McDonald Institute, Cambridge.

More information

Conference: 8th Archaeological Conference of Central Germany

Rich and Poor – Competing for resources in prehistory. International conference in Halle (Saale), October 22nd – 24th, 2015.

More information

Call for papers:12th International Congress of Cretan Studies

All wishing to participate in the Congress are invited to submit an abstract of 300-500 words of their proposal at the electronic platform, from the 15th of July to the 30th of November 2015.

Call for papers: The Prehistoric Society Europa Conference 2016

Dynamics of Art, Design, and Vision in Iron Age Europe. University of Edinburgh, 3–4 June 2016. The Prehistoric Society and the University of Edinburgh School of History, Classics and Archaeology invite early career researchers to submit a paper proposal for the Europa Conference.

More information

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