Imported Material in Atlantic Britain and Ireland c.AD400-800

Ewan Campbell, 2007

Data copyright © Dr Ewan Campbell unless otherwise stated


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Overview

There are three elements to the files made available through the Archaeology Data Service:

  1. Textual and tabular material supplementary to the printed monograph
  2. A database containing full details of the imported material
  3. GIS files to enable production of distribution maps

1. Textual material

These files are mainly self-explanatory. Appendices 1 and 2 contain detailed descriptions of the fabrics of the imported pottery, and a full description of E ware which is an expansion of Chapter 3.2 in the printed monograph. Appendix 3 gives a detailed account of the Group Cb cone beakers, the most distinctive of the glass imports. Appendix 4 has a full discussion of the occurrence of purple dyestuffs on E ware, including some background material and analytical results. Appendix 5 gives a new translation and discussion of a charter of the abbey of Saint-Denis, Paris which mentions a trade in madder. Appendices 6-9 give full details of pottery, glass and metalwork from Dinas Powys used in the analysis presented in Chapter 6. Much of this material was not published in the original report. Also included is a fuller discussion of the proposed re-phasing of Dinas Powys. Finally, there is an integrated bibliography which includes references from the printed report, the appendices, and the database; as well as a guide to the use of the database.

The additional tables give summaries of the numbers of all the pottery and glass types from each site: Table 12 for Mediterranean vessels; Table 13 for Continental vessels; Table 14 for different glass types; and Table 15 for different E ware forms. Then there are tables detailing the characteristics of sites with imports: Table 16 for Cornwall and Devon; Table 17 for Wales and Somerset; Table 18 for Ireland; Nad Table 19 for Scotland and the Isle of Man. These details were used to produce the arguments in Chapters 8 and 9 of the monograph on the distribution and exchange mechanisms of the imports. The final tables detail scientific results of investigations of e ware: Tables 20 and 21 list the heavy mineral analyses and neutron activation analyses; and Table 22 lists the results of dye analyses.

2. Database

The relational database contains full details of the pottery and glass imports, including descriptions, quantifications, site contextual information, locations and references. There are 13 tables altogether, one for each of the import types (ARS, PRS, LRA, DSPA, E ware, Glass, unclassified, and rejected), one for the sites, as well as look up tables for museums, countries, glass forms and glass sub-types.

3. GIS files

These files consist of a number of ESRI shapefiles for the coast and main rivers of Britain and Ireland, and the northwest of Europe. By importing the database files into a GIS system along with the shapefiles, the distribution of vessels can be plotted. This was how the distribution maps in the printed monograph were generated. Full British Ordnance Survey twelve-figure grid references (eastings and northings) are given for each import site, though latitude and longitude figures (decimal notation) are also given. Those who have access to detailed Ordnance Survey topographical data (eg through Digimap), can use OS data to produce much more detailed maps of specific regions. The supplied shapefiles are only useful for small-scale maps such as those printed.