“The of Associate Editors has been appointed.
“The archaeology of the medieval millenium survives all around us, above and below ground in our streets, burial grounds, fields and museums, simultaneosly tantalizingly close and intriguingly enigmatic. As a forum for nurturing research, sharing discoveries and exchanging ideas, the Society for Medieval Archaeology welcomes anyone, whether treir interest is personal or professional, who wants to find out more about the physical remains of this era of profound change which shaped the world we all share today.” 1 says Carenza Lewis, the president of the Society for Medieval Archaeology.The Society for Medieval Archaeology was founded in order to study the evidence of the past, such as buildings, landscapes, buried remains or artefacts from museums.
2 The Society studies the period from the 5th to the 16 century A.D., by publishing a journal of international that deals with the archaeological evidences and by holding regular meetings and conferences. The Society aims to serve as a middle tool for co-ordinating the work of archaeologists with the work of historians and scholars in any other disciplines that are relevant to thie field. While maintaining a concern for medieval archaeology in Britain and in Ireland,the Society looks for support and aims to advance to the international study of the period. The society it aiming to provide a forum for the disscusions of the important finds and the developments in this period from all over the world. To aim this by encouraging the submission of the material from overseas scholars, a team of Associate Editors has been appointed.3On the 16th April 2017, the society celebrated 50 years of medieval archaeology.
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With this occasion Christopher Gerrad, the author of Medieval Archaeology- understanding traditions and contemporary approaches, wrote an article on the society web site. The society was founded on the 16th April 1957, at the newly appointed director of the London Museum, Donald Harden, which made a propositionto form a new society for Dark Age and Medieval Studies. The idea was simple, a society with a journal, that will meet occasionally and has an annual conference, all this to be dedicated to the period that starts whith the end of the Roman period to the end of the Middle Ages in Britain, without neglecting the rest of Europe and without beeing too exclusive in the period or the subject.4 The society had a support of 85 people the day it was founded. Rupert Bruce-Mitford, the Keeper of British and Medieval Antiquities at the British Museum became the first president of the Society, and within the next two years the number of the members raised to 500.5 The Society has precedents such as the Society for the Promotion of Roman Studies founded in 1911 and the Prehistoric Society of East Anglia founded in 1908, which later became the Prehistoric Society in 1935.
John Hurst in 1956 said that it should be a cooperation between historians, geographers and architects, so that the whole field of medieval studies to be covered, in hope to increase the links that are beginning to form between the archaeologists and historians.6 The Society’s main purpose was to encourage the study of the archaeology of the period of the growth of the English nation. In 1936, the Prehistoric Sciety was refounded as a national body based on the former Prehistoric Society of East Anglia, it has covered the archaeology of the island up to the Roman conquest.
Since 1911 the period of the Roman domination was covered by the Society for the Promotion of Roman Studies, which main focus was to Roman Britain. The agreement was that any new society should take a sphere of influence of the period that is next to the departure of the Roman armies from the shores and should cover the whole dark ages and medieval periods. The term of dark age is excluded from the title of the Society’s name due to an attempt to attain brevity and because of an attempt to fit in with the generally accepted terminology of historians in the country and on the continent.7The journal is essentialy an archaeological journal and is not including articles that are primarily historical and philological, and it was hoped that it will attract the support of exponents of the allied studies by using studies where is proper and desirable to elucidate the archaeological evidence and vice versa. The day passed when the historian, the philologist, the art-historian and the archaeologist ignored each other, but without attracting adverse criticism from each other. Today the disciplines and others, including more purely scientific ones, work togheter, in order to make a significant progress. The first volume of the journal includes an article on Beowulf and Archaeology written by Rosemary J.
Cramp,who is a lecturer in Anglo-Saxon studies and one article on Tree-ring analisys as an aid to medieval studies, written jointly by a meteorologist and an archeologist, A. W. G. Lowther and D.
Justin Schove. The future volumes are going to continue the attempt to show the interaction of the disciplines and to open new avenues for coordinated research on medieval antiquities.8The issue of the Society that I am reviewing is volume 50 published in 2006. The issue has 7 articles, followed by notes and news from the field, then has book reviews, after has short reviews and at the end of the issue are published an annual report and acoounts of the society, a list of officers and council of the society and the contributors to the volume. The first article Special Deposits in Anglo-Saxon Settlements is written by Helena Hamerow, professor of Early Medieval Archaeology at the university of Oxford. The article is about the evidence from Anglo-Saxon settlements, because there are little discussions about them, such are about the evidences fot ritual activity in the Later Prehistoric and Romano-British settlements. The article presents a preliminary survey about these special deposits, mostly humans and animals, within the Anglo-Saxon settlements and considers the compositions, the context and the placement of these deposits that tells us about the nature of Anglo-Saxon ritual. The article compares the evidence from the Iron Age and Roman-Britain and from the NW of Europe, especialy the relationship of special deposits to buildings, boundaries and entrances.
9The second article Beyond Villages and Ope Fields: The Origins and Development of a Historic Landscape Characterised by Dispersed Settlement in South-West England is written by S.J. Rippon, R.M. Fyfe and A.G. Brown.
The pollen evidence made a small contribution to the understanding of the origins and development of the medieval landscape, which in the article is compared with with the prehistoric period. The sequences that are reported suggest substantial clearance of woodland in lowland areas and the upland fringe by the Late Iron Age, and that the incorporation of the region into the Roman world that ha a small impact on the patterns of landscape. The palaeoenvironmental sequences are suggesting that in the 7th -8th centuries, there was a significant change in the patterns of land-use, that relates to the introduction of a regionally distinctive system of agriculture.10The third article The Origins of King’s Lynn? Control of Wealth on the Wash Prior to the Norman Conquest by A. R. J. Hutcheson, investigates the archaeology and the history of productive sites, estate centres and towns between 600 and 1100 A.D.
in north-western East-Anglia. While it concentrates on a specific sub-region, in NW Norfolk, an argument is developed on the nature of the relationship between archaeological assemblanges and administrative structures that can be applied more widely for the period. The nature of productive sites is discussed and I suggested that these places were centres of administration and tax collention. The later history of these sites in western Norfolk is examined in this article, focusing on the effect that the Vikings wars and subsequent Danish, and how the background have affected the decision by Herbert de Losinga , the first bishop of Norwich, to site a priory port and new town at Lynn is explored in this article.11Investing in Sculpture: Power in Early-historic Scotland written by Meggen Gondek focuses on the sculpted stones of Scotland that were used as a means of exploring Early-medieval art and ideology. The archaeological studies have considered stone monuments whithin their physical setting, by using the landscapes to inform the social and political meaning. The article is studying the carved monuments in the contesxt of their distribution and the relative amount of investment involved in their production. In order to understand the latter , a system of assessing relative investment in sculpture is devised and tested in three regional studies: Argyll and Bute, southern Pictland and Dumfries and Galloway.
Reflection on a 9th –century Northumbrian Metalworking Tradition: A silver Hoard from Poppleton North Yorkshire written by Gabor Thomas is concentrating on a hoard of Late Saxon ornamental metalwork, comprising two matching sets of four strapends, each and four fragments of an openwork silver disc, that was discovered in the parnish of Upper Poppleton, on the outskirts of York. Particular emphasis os laid on the date, function, manufacture and localisation of the strap-ends, which rank amongst the most accomplished examples yet discovered of this ubiquitous class of Late Saxon ornamental metalwork.12Space and Structure at Caernarfon Castle, by Michael Fradley, studies the high medieval castles that have benefited from the incorporation of elemnts of landscape archaeology. The article is a complete study of the late 13th century castle of Caernarfon and its relationship with the surrounding landscape, that aims to stimulate interest in the avenue of archaeological research.
Is focusing on the subtle relationship between the castle, the adjoining walled town and their ecclesiastical foci, and considering them in the relation to the other Edwardian castles in Wales, the benefits of these approaches are evident.13The last article is about the Evidence for the Dissolution of Thorney Abbey: Recent Excavations and Landscape Analysis at Thorney, Cambridgeshire, by John Thomas is about the first significant archaeological excavations in the village of Thorney, that revealeed a sequence of occupation deposits associated with the former Benedictine Abbey. In the Middle Ages Thorney was surrounded by fen wetland and the excavations reported that were located near the northern edge of the former island, to the north of the abbey church and suspected location of the main abbey. 14What I wanted to highlight by annalising every article in the journal, is that the journal is mainly based on archaeology in Britain. From my opinion the journal is still publishing articles that are only about Britain, it has not extended yet to publishing articles about medieval archaeology from Europe. In comparison with From the Baltic to the Black Sea that is part from a book series by One World Archaeology, which published studies about medieval archaeology in Europe. The book is an insight into the world of medieval Eastern Europe and opens a neglected archaeological tradition to English readers.
The book suggests new approaches to the period when history begins and the early medieval stages emerge on which nationalities are based. The book examines the early european ethnic formations and states, the demography of medieval populations and the nature of rural settlement and urban development. It has chapters about the contacts between Byzantium and medieval Hungary and Scandinavia. It analyses the medieval populations of Denmark, of social organizations from Poland and cultural conflicts in Livonia.
And studies the early settlement in Bohemia and the Danube valley are complemented by detailed accounts of the origin and growth of three great medieval cities Lubeck, Prague and Kiev.15By this comparison I wanted to show other books that are part of a series of books that are focusing on medieval archaeology in Europe. 1 Carenza Lewis, President of the Society for Medieval Archaeology, www.medievalarchaeology.co.uk ( accesed 08/12/2017).2 www.
medievalarchaeology.co.uk ( accesed 08/12/2017).3 Medieval Archaeology, Journal of the Society for Medieval Archaeology number 50 from 2006, Maney, 2006.
4 Christopher Gerrad, www.medievalarchaeology.co.
uk (accesed 08/12/2017).5 Christopher Gerrad, www.medievalarchaeology.co.uk. (accesed 08/12/2017).6 Christopher Gerrad, www.medievalarchaeology.
co.uk. (accesed 08/12/2017).7 Medieval Archaeology, Journal of the Society for Medieval Archaeology, Maney, 1957, p.2.8 Medieval Archaeology, p.2.
9 Helena Hamerow, Special Deposits in Anglo-Saxon Settlements, in The Journal of the Society for Medieval Archaeology, Maney, 2006, p.1.10 S. J. Rippon, R. M.
Fyfe and A. G. Brown, Beyond Villages and Ope Fields: The Origins and Development of a Historic Landscape Characterised by Dispersed Settlement in South-West England, in The Journal of the Society for Medieval Archaeology, Maney, 2006, p.31.
11 A. R. J. Hutcheson, The Origins of King’s Lynn? Control of Wealth on the Wash Prior to the Norman Conquest, in The Journal of the Society for Medieval Archaeology, Maney, 2006, p. 71.12 Gabor Thomas, Reflection on a 9th –century Northumbrian Metalworking Tradition: A silver Hoard from Poppleton North Yorkshire, in The Journal of the Society for Medieval Archaeology, Maney, 2006, p. 143.
13 Michael Fradley, Space and Structure at Caernarfon Castle, in The Journal of the Society for Medieval Archaeology, Maney, 2006, p. 165.14 John Thomas, Evidence for the Dissolution of Thorney Abbey: Recent Excavations and Landscape Analysis at Thorney, Cambridgeshire, in The Journal of the Society for Medieval Archaeology, Maney, 2006, p. 179.15 David Austin and Leslie Alcock, From the Baltic to the Black Sea- Studies in Medieval Archaeology, Routledge, London, 1997.