Special Anniversary Collection 2017

Special Anniversary Collection

20 articles released for free to celebrate 60 years of the Society for Medieval Archaeology and its journal!

The Society for Medieval Archaeology is delighted to announce a special virtual issue of Medieval Archaeology. This is a digital collection of papers released for free in celebration of the 60th anniversary year. It is available with a short editorial via the following link http://explore.tandfonline.com/content/ah/ymed-medieval-archaeology-vsi

To celebrate six decades of the journal, the current President, Carenza Lewis, the Honorary Secretary, Dawn Hadley, and the current Honorary Editor for the journal, Sarah Semple, have selected 20 articles published in the journal since 1957. These represent the journal’s strength in interdisciplinary scholarship and its role in bringing new findings to press as well as the continued emphasis on publishing major overviews of substantive original datasets. They also capture the shifting disciplinary and theoretical concerns of the subject, and the journal’s increasingly international remit. Many articles continue to be timely; precedents to, and relevant in, current debate. The selection inevitably excludes many excellent pieces, as the articles gathered here are chosen to provide an overview, and are not necessarily the most frequently cited. However we hope our selection provides a chance for our members to contemplate the changing profile of research published in the journal over 60 years. We hope you enjoy the compilation.

Season’s Greetings from us all!

The new cover for Medieval Archaeology

Read the Special Anniversary Issue here

 

 

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Volume 61/2 now out and available

Medieval Archaeology

**Volume 61/2 now out and available at Taylor and Francis Online**

With December fast approaching, I’m delighted to announce that our second issue this year 61/2 is now out and available at Taylor and Francis Online. This rounds off 2017 with a range of articles on archaeological findings from across Europe and Britain, as well as Medieval Britain and Ireland PAS round-up, Highlights and Reviews. Hard copies of this issue are winging their way to members now and should arrive in mid-December.

Lyminge, showing the pre-Christian royal focus under excavation

Lyminge, showing the pre-Christian royal focus under excavation

61/2 opens with ‘Interpreting Rock-Cut Grave Cemeteries: The Early Medieval Necropolis of São Gens, Portugal’. Here Stuart Brookes, Catharina Tente and Sara Prata, put forward a new comparative methodology for exploring the form and development of rock-cut cemeteries, which are a well-known class of funerary sites, generally recognised for their paucity of furnishings and dating evidence. These authors point to comparative arrangements and developments on cemeteries in England, and the potential of this information to aid to interpretation in Portugal. Visual Graph Analysis is used in an innovative study of clusters, accessibility, visibility and prominence at the necropolis, producing valuable results and proving that such an approach can draw out further information. In the next article, attention turns to Ireland, in a broad study of jet and jet-like jewellery production in the first millennium AD. Paul Stevens reveals the different scales of indigenous production of these luxury items in early medieval Ireland, and puts forward evidence of the management of materials, manufacture and goods by elites and elite centres, arguing for regional centres of production.

Louth cross in Everson & Stocker

Louth cross in Everson & Stocker

Commodities and luxuries are ideas also relevant to the next paper. In ‘Monetary Practices in Early Medieval Western Scandinavia’, Dagfinn Skre argues for a different way of thinking about monetisation, using discussion of evidence drawn from western Norway and Scandinavia in the 5th-10th centuries AD. Skre points to the diverse treatment of metal and bullion as a means of payment in early medieval society and the need to consider its use in customary and symbolic payments. Debate then broadens out in geographic and temporal terms in ‘Religious Transformations in the Middle Ages: Towards a New Archaeological Agenda’. Gabor Thomas and colleagues, present a case-study led assessment of religious transformation in the long term from a cross-cultural perspective. In an examination of pagan, Christian, Islamic and Jewish religions in medieval Europe, the authors move away from national dialogues, instead showing how religious transformation was negotiated by people in terms of tempo and trajectory, and pointing to shared themes of hybridity and resilience.

Staying with Christianity the journal moves next to Britain and Lincolnshire in a detailed and exceptionally well-illustrated article, Paul Everson and David Stocker, unfold the complex life of the Louth Cross from Lincolnshire. Starting with the discovery of pre-Conquest cross fragments, they piece together the cross and its life, its use and reuse, in a rich exposition of the development of the market town of Louth promoted by the Bishop of Lindsey in the 10th century. ‘The Cros in the Markitte Stede’ offers new insights on the form and placement of the sculpture, but also the medieval development of Louth itself. The final article takes issue with the long debate in Ireland on medieval ‘hall-houses’. In an innovative study, Karen Dempsey considers and visits numerous ruins and has presents the results of original field survey and geophysics, and argues for a full-scale reconsideration of the form and function of 13th-century Seignurial buildings in Ireland.

This issue of course also includes Medieval Britain and Ireland with reports from the Portable Antiquities Scheme and Fieldwork Highlights. PAS features some exceptional finds in 2016, including a 7th-century cabochon-cut garnet gold pendant from Ham and Stone, Gloucestershire: a unique find in this locality. Louth in Lincolnshire is also returned to, with the discovery of an assemblage of finds that may represent the remains of a high-status female burial of the 7th century, including elements of a hanging bowl, a gold-and-garnet pendant, two buckles, a scale pan, and a terminal decorated with a head of Woden. The design on the escutcheons has parallels with examples from Morden (Surrey), and the small hanging bowl from Sutton Hoo Mound 1. Fieldwork Highlights offers insight into the recent excavations and discoveries on the island of Lindisfarne, which may relate to the monastic community and the results of geophysical exploration at Pembroke Castle. Readers can round off the volume by perusing a lengthy reviews section, which encompasses many of the recent publications on sites and conference proceedings from Britain and Europe.

Sarah Semple

Honorary Editor, Medieval Archaeology

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Read about our exclusive event at Yorkshire Museum

Viking: Rediscover the Legend

Twenty lucky SMA members attended an exclusive, free event at Yorkshire Museum, York, on 12th October 2017.

Members enjoyed a guided tour of ‘Viking: Rediscover the Legend’ by one of its curators, Dr. Andrew Woods.

SMA members had the opportunity to use the ground-breaking Virtual Reality equipment which allowed them to view the reconstruction of the army camp at Torksey.

SMA members had the opportunity to use the ground-breaking Virtual Reality equipment which allowed them to view the reconstruction of the army camp at Torksey.

SMA members had the opportunity to use the ground-breaking Virtual Reality equipment which allowed them to view the reconstruction of the army camp at Torksey.

The exhibition brought together two of the most significant Viking collections in a major new exhibition. Featuring some of the most exciting Anglo-Saxon and Viking discoveries ever made, the exhibition explored how the Vikings transformed life in Britain.

Alongside outstanding objects, the exhibition included a ground-breaking Virtual Reality reconstruction of the army camp at Torksey, Lincs. This built upon the research of Prof. Dawn Hadley, who spoke to the members in attendance about the project and her work at the site.

Members were given a private tour by curator Dr Andrew Woods and Prof. Dawn Hadley

Members were given a private tour by curator Dr Andrew Woods and Prof. Dawn Hadley

 

Following the tour there is the opportunity to attend Dr. Steve Ashby’s paper ‘Of Locks and Socks: aspects of everyday life in Viking towns’.

The major new exhibition brought together two of the most significant Viking collections, which SMA members at this exclusive event.

The major new exhibition brought together two of the most significant Viking collections, which SMA members viewed at this exclusive event.

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2018 Annual Conference Announced

Society for Medieval Archaeology 2018 Annual Conference

Grave Concerns: Death, Landscape and Locality in Medieval Society

Dates: Friday 13th – Sunday 15th July 2018

Venue: Department of Archaeology and the Calman Centre, Durham University

Organisers: Kate MeesSue HarringtonSarah SempleBecky Gowland and Brian Buchanan (Durham University)

Since 1990, a series of major conferences and publications have investigated aspects of death and burial in medieval societies in Europe and beyond. Some have delivered state-of-the-art research on early medieval and medieval funerary rites; others have profiled new advances in scientific research on the human body. Throughout all, spatial consideration has emerged as a connecting research strand.

From understanding the distribution patterns of grave types and the use of antecedent landscape features for burial, to charting the rise of commemorative markers in stone, and the arrival of monastic and churchyard burial traditions; from exploring political signalling and polity formation through burial display, to identifying patterns of diseases and health in medieval populations and their mobility, the location of the grave has become a rich stepping off point, stimulating and facilitating new research directions.

This 3-day conference, sponsored by the Society for Medieval Archaeology brings together established and early career researchers working on aspects of death, dying and burial from AD 300-1500 in Britain, Ireland and further afield. Members will be able to register to attend for free. Registration for conference attendance will open on the 1st of February 2018.

Call for Papers: Deadline 30th November 2017

Confirmed speakers include: Professor Bonnie Effros (University of Liverpool), Professor Roberta Gilchrist (University of Reading), Dr Duncan Sayer (University of Central Lancashire), Dr Mary Lewis (University of Reading), Professor John Hines (Cardiff University), Professor Christopher Knüsel (Université de Bordeaux) Jean Soulat (LandArc Laboratory and CNRS Research Unit UMR 6273 from CRAHAM), Adrian Maldonado (University of Glasgow) and Catriona McKenzie (University of Exeter).

We welcome proposals or presentations or posters on new research findings, major projects and recent publications. We are particularly keen to include contributions on findings from Europe and the British Isles, AD 300-1500. Topics and themes of interest include mapping funerary rites, plotting grave attributes, interrogating monuments, sculptures and assemblages in spatial and geographic terms, using burials to explore the formation processes of medieval power and political structures and and exploring health issues, diet and mobility with the landscape in mind. Contributions dealing with changes in burial rites from the late antique to medieval worlds, and from early to late medieval society, are also welcome.

Papers will be 30 min in length. A conference publication is planned. Abstracts of no more than 200 words should be submitted by the deadline to kate.a.mees@durham.ac.uk

 

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Special Issue of mediecal Archaeology

The Society for Medieval Archaeology is delighted to announce that this year we will publish a special, online issue of Medieval Archaeology.

The special issue will be an online issue only in celebration of the 60th anniversary year. The Editor, President and Secretary are selecting a number of papers which sparked new debate or seminal discoveries from the past 60 years of content.

It will be released as a special issue with a short editorial, available online from November 2017.

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Discount on Books!

The Society for Medieval Archaeology is delighted to offer another exclusive benefit of SMA membership. All members will receive discount on Routledge publications bought through their website. Simply add the SMA code when purchasing books; you can find this code in each copy of the SMA Newsletter (beginning with Autumn 2017).

To avail of this this discount join the SMA here.

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