SPEX 2013 – Days 8 – 9

As well as cleaning mud on site, we have also been cleaning our finds as we go. With the exception of metal finds, most of our finds can be washed and labelled on site. We divide our finds broadly into two main groups: bulk finds (mostly pottery and animal bone) and small finds (coins, nails, flint etc). The latter category does not necessarily have to be small in size, so, arguably, ‘rare’ finds might be a better name… Bulk finds are attributed to a context number, which is a number we give to each archaeologically-identifiable event in the past. Small finds are treated slightly differently; as well as being attributed to a context number, we also give them a 3D location. Of course, this all creates quite a lot of paperwork, so I have been very grateful to our finds manager, Janice, for making sure that we are all behaving ourselves and filling in our records properly! My thanks also go out to Sue who has patiently been washing our finds almost as quickly as we dig them.

Sue, Janice and Adam looking at the nearly complete white ware jar that Sue washed earlier in the day.

Sue, Janice and Adam looking at the nearly complete white ware jar that Sue washed earlier in the day.

One of my favourite sherds of Roman pottery from the site. It has lots of (too many?) kinds of decoration, including barbotine dots, rouletting and raised swirls.

One of my favourite sherds of Roman pottery from the site. It has lots of (too many?) kinds of decoration, including barbotine dots, rouletting and raised swirls.

In addition to the usual things one expects to find on Roman sites, such as pottery and iron nails, we have also been finding some nice worked flint, including a few cores (what remains of a flint nodule after flakes have been struck from it) and some rather nice microliths, typical of the Mesolithic. Most of this material seems to have come from hillwash, so it seems likely that there may be some nice earlier prehistoric archaeology further up the slope.

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