Magnetic Moments in the Past

Cathy Batt, Paul Linford, Zoe Outram, 2013

Data copyright © Dr Cathy Batt, Paul Linford, Dr Zoe Outram unless otherwise stated


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Primary contact

Dr Cathy Batt
Senior Lecturer in Archaeological Sciences
Archaeological Sciences
University of Bradford
Bradford
West Yorkshire
BD7 1DP
England
Tel: 01274 233533

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Resource identifiers

Digital Object Identifiers

Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) are persistent identifiers which can be used to consistently and accurately reference digital objects and/or content. The DOIs provide a way for the ADS resources to be cited in a similar fashion to traditional scholarly materials. More information on DOIs at the ADS can be found on our help page.

Citing this DOI

The updated Crossref DOI Display guidelines recommend that DOIs should be displayed in the following format:

https://doi.org/10.5284/1000158
Sample Citation for this DOI

Cathy Batt, Paul Linford, Zoe Outram (2013) Magnetic Moments in the Past [data-set]. York: Archaeology Data Service [distributor] https://doi.org/10.5284/1000158

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Overview

The database collates the archaeomagnetic information collected from sites within the UK, building on previous databases (Clark et al. 1988, Tarling 1999 located at http://www.ngdc.noaa.gov/geomag/paleo.shtml, and Zananiri et al. 2007).

The Query Form

The records located within the database can be searched using the query forms. A summary of the fields used is presented here:

Field nameDescription
Site nameRecords can be identified using the name of the sites where the work was carried out, such as 'Old Scatness Broch' and 'Dogmersfield Park'. Records may also be located using part of the site name only, for example searching for records of sites containing the word 'Mine' will locate the archaeomagnetic report produced for the site at Mine Howe, Orkney.
Excavated byThis field relates to the unit, council or university that was responsible for the excavation of the site. Records can be located using either the full name of the unit (e.g. Oxford Archaeology), or part of the name (e.g. Wessex, Cornwall etc.).
County/RegionThis allows the user to search for records within a certain area using the list provided. The list is arranged by country, and then in alphabetical order.
PeriodRecords can be identified based on the ages of the sites using the list of archaeological periods. The options available reflect the data incorporated into the database and include multiperiod sites, such as 'Iron Age/Roman', 'Roman/Early Medieval' and 'Iron Age onwards'. It is important to note that the Iron Age in Scotland does not end in AD43, but continues into the early 9th century AD.
Feature typeThis field allows the user to search for records based on the types of features that were sampled using the list provided. The range of features recorded in the list reflects the data incorporated into the database.
Minimum date/Maximum dateThese two fields allow the user to locate records within a specific time period by entering the upper and lower limits of time they are interested in. It is important to note that years BC should be entered as negative values. For example, searching for records dating between 200BC to AD400 should be entered as '-200' and '400' in to the minimum and maximum fields respectively.
Date produced byThis allows the user to search for records produced by the different archaeomagnetic laboratories using the list provided. The list is arranged in alphabetical order.
Hard science

© Aitken 1990, redrawn by Daniel Bashford

The database can be searched using any combination of these fields.

The Results List

Once the query has been constructed and submitted, a list of results will be produced. Each record in the list corresponds to a single archaeomagnetic date; an example of the information included in the list has been provided below:

Dogmersfield Park (Hampshire), Wessex Archaeology, 1DF, Ancient Monuments Laboratory, Post-Medieval.

In this example, the feature was excavated by Wessex Archaeology and was dated to the Post-Medieval period based on the archaeological evidence. The date was produced by the Ancient Monuments Laboratory and was assigned the sample code '1DF'.

The full records for the archaeomagnetic dates can be viewed by selecting the record from the results list.

The Results List: Full Record

The full records for each archaeomagnetic date included in the database presents the following information:

Field nameDescription
Site nameThe name of the site.
RegionThe county or province in which the site is located.
Grid referenceThe OS grid reference assigned to the site.
OrganisationThe organisation responsible for the excavation of the site.
PeriodThe archaeological period the sampled feature belongs too.
Feature typeThe type of feature that was sampled for archaeomagnetic dating.
Context descriptionA summary of the sampled deposit has been provided where possible, including a description of the feature and the materials sampled.
AM RefThe code assigned to the sampled feature by the archaeomagnetic laboratories.
LaboratoryThe laboratory responsible for producing the date.
Inclination & DeclinationThe measured magnetic vector recorded by the sampled feature, which corresponds to the ancient magnetic field. The values are presented in decimal degrees.
Alpha-95The error associated to the measured data, presented in decimal degrees
Minimum dateThe lower (oldest) limit of the calibrated age range. The date is given in calendar years BC (negative)/AD (positive).
Maximum dateThe upper (youngest) limit of the calibrated age range. The date is given in calendar years BC (negative)/AD (positive).
Calibration curve usedThis states which calibration curve was used to calibrate the archaeomagnetic data.
68% confidenceIf the date was calculated to correspond to 68% confidence levels then this field will be labelled 'TRUE'.
95% confidenceIf the date was calculated to correspond to 95% confidence levels then this field will be labelled 'TRUE'.
NotesAny additional information has been summarised here.
ReferencesThe location of the published data.