Back in the summer we took lots of samples through some of the deposits that Hayley and here team were excavating in the corridor opposite Room 2.
One of these samples was a small box of sediment contained in a kubiena tin. Essentially this allows us to take a block of deposit from which we can produce a thin-section. This can then be studied scientifically as a micromorphology sample.
Newcastle’s very own expert in archaeological soils – Dr Lisa-Marie Shillito – has kindly been examining our micromorphology sample. Her preliminary observations are available over on her blog Castle and Coprolites.
There’s quite a lot going on at the moment.
First of all Andy and James are working hard to put a project design together for this season’s work, We’re asking Historic England for permission to reinvestigate the villa’s bath block. We’d hoped to do this in the 2016 season, but resources didn’t permit. Watch this space for further developments.
In other news various bits of post-excavation analysis are progressing. GeoFlo are just about finished processing last season’s soil samples (greatly helped by James’s production of a stratigraphic matrix for the site). Once the samples have been processed they’ll be heading up to Newcastle for sorting.
Naomi (a third year undergraduate) is working for the project and part of her role will be to sort the sample residues. Until then she’s been busy doing some data entry, quantifying tesserae and doing other bits and pieces.
Mark Hoyle, a fantastic archaeological illustrator, has also been busy drawing some of our finds. Many of these are from our 2014 excavations of the deserted medieval settlement of Barrow (in Odcombe). We’re especially pleased with his drawing of the seal matrix. We hope to submit our report on these excavations for publication in the near future.
Medeival Seal Matrix from Barrow
He’s also drawn a few finds from the villa. These include the hairpin James found on the tessellated pavement.
Late Roman hairpin from the villa