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FeedSax: a new open-access bioarchaeological database

We are excited to announce the publication of a new and exciting archive – ‘Feeding Anglo-Saxon England (FeedSax): The Bioarchaeology of an Agricultural Revolution, 2017-2022’.

Logo for the FeedSax Project

From 2017 to 2022, the ‘Feeding Anglo-Saxon England’ (FeedSax) project, based at the Universities of Oxford and Leicester, assembled and interrogated a vast bioarchaeological dataset, providing a new perspective on this pivotal aspect of early medieval history. 

The FeedSax Digital Archive is hosted by the Archaeology Data Service and contains 123 files, including 26 radiocarbon dating reports, a technical paper on stable isotope variability, palynological syntheses, 215 pages of archaeobotanical analysis, and ‘Haystack’: the project’s core database comprising archaeological, archaeobotanical, zooarchaeological, radiocarbon, and crop and animal isotope data. Haystack can be queried through an interactive map-based interface and sits alongside the complete raw datasets, which are also available to download. 

In addition to this archive, the FeedSax project has also created the FeedSax Photographic Archive, hosted by the University of Oxford’s Sustainable Digital Scholarship service. This database contains 6,599 microscope photographs of charred grains, constituting both a record of destructively analysed material and a resource for future geometric morphometric studies.

The FeedSax project was supported by the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement no. 741751).