Thursday, 12 August 2010

DAY 8 - 11th August 2010


Trench 5

Hi i’m a french student from Paris. I’ve come to Scotland to improve my English and to experience  Scottish archaeology as i’ve previously excavated mostly  in France. This morning i was on the same feature that i have been on since the beginning of last week – this was a post hole within the sondage. A sondage is like a trench within a trench for getting a better and quicker  understanding of what’s happening within the feature. Other people have been getting deeper and deeper into their
features. This most important thing i’ve found so far has been some charcoal. 

Trench 6
Today we dug up the “pit of death”  a bit deeper, it’s now about  1.40m deep. I found a sherd of corded ware pottery in it. All of the people who excavated that particular bit looked like bob the builder as we had to wear safety helmets. Mattocks,  shovels and wheelbarrows completed the picture.
Also a few big stones were uncovered causing lots of excited noises from our supervisors. Then in a grave pit excavated by Shuhei ( apologies if I got the spelling wrong, which I most probably did) a big piece of beaker showed up and our trench was filled with uuuch and ooochs of our superviosion team.
Apart from that I discovered we have voodoo doll attached to a pole on one of the spoil heaps which no doubt has a purpose of destroying all of our enemies whoever they may be.  I also learned that a soup ladle is a very serious piece of archeo-equipment as are sponges apparently!

Trench 7
After the rain of yesterday we made good progress on continuing to excavate the features. Jim and Jackie continued with their excavations of palisade postholes, reaching several different fills and taking samples.

Meanwhile Anne and Laura continued excavating the two possible posthole slots at right angles to the line of the palisade enclosure. As the day went on Ann reached what looked like a nice coherent fill with some packing stones and a fill that was the consistency of concrete, and just about as hard to dig! After some rigorous chiselling Anne was ready to photograph and draw the section, Laura will be reaching a similar stage tomorrow.

Robert completed excavation of the semi-circular, amorphous deposit and then went to assist with the section drawing of Robbie’s posthole.

Robbie completed the half-section of another palisade posthole today, stretching a respectable 1.6m into the ground. To accommodate this and stop Robbie from falling headfirst into it, some more breakthrough tool designing took place. The 11th of August 2010 will for ever more be known for the invention of the ‘trowdle ©’. An aesthetically pleasing, functional piece of equipment, this new invention tops even the likes of the “Planinator ©.” Combining the digging power of a trowel and the scooping potential of the ladle this is a unique and exciting opportunity to get your hands on one. Units are available for a mere £21.78, orders for multiple units accepted. They are also good for spinning at speed around your head. Please contact Clancy and MacIver Ltd. for more information

Trench 8
Hi there, this is Fi again. Today was my last day at trench 8 and it proved to be a very successful one. In the morning I continued to excavate the grave in the larger of the two barrows and came across some human tooth enamel at the western end. It was badly preserved but it’s the first human remains I’ve ever found so I was very excited. The teeth were gently removed with some of the surrounding soil due to their delicate nature and placed in small finds bags. A small circle of finer soil above the teeth was identified by Ewan Campbell  as a soil mark created by the brain cavity of the human skull that had once been there slowly becoming filled with silty sand before finally rotting away in the acidic soil. Lewis continued work on the smaller grave and we both managed to get our recording finished.  

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