Footsteps in the Dark

Ritual, Memory and Identity at the High Pasture Cave Complex, Skye

Author: S. A. Birch

Publisher: Oxbow Books Limited

ISBN:

Category: History

Page: 688

View: 484

Details excavations at High Pasture Cave Complex, Skye, Scotland, challenging our current understanding of Iron Age cave use and function.

The Bioarchaeology of Ritual and Religion

Author: Alexandra Livarda

Publisher:

ISBN:

Category: Science

Page: 288

View: 920

The Bioarchaeology of Ritual and Religion is the first volume dedicated to exploring ritual and religious practice in past societies from a variety of ‘environmental’ remains. Building on recent debates surrounding, for instance, performance, materiality and the false dichotomy between ritualistic and secular behavior, this book investigates notions of ritual and religion through the lens of perishable material culture. Research centering on bioarchaeological evidence and drawing on methods from archaeological science has traditionally focused on functional questions surrounding environment and economy. However, recent years have seen an increased recognition of the under-exploited potential for scientific data to provide detailed information relating to ritual and religious practice. This volume explores the diverse roles of plant, animal, and other organic remains in ritual and religion, as foods, offerings, sensory or healing mediums, grave goods, and worked artifacts. It also provides insights into how archaeological science can shed light on the reconstruction of ritual processes and the framing of rituals. The 14 papers showcase current and new approaches in the investigation of bioarchaeological evidence for elucidating complex social issues and worldviews. The case studies are intentionally broad, encompassing a range of sub-disciplines of bioarchaeology including archaeobotany, anthracology, palynology, micromorphology, geoarchaeology, zooarchaeology (including avian and worked bone studies), archaeomalacology, and organic residue analysis. The temporal and geographical coverage is equally wide, extending across Europe from the Mediterranean and Aegean to the Baltic and North Atlantic regions, and from the Mesolithic to the medieval period. The volume also includes a discursive paper by Prof. Brian Hayden, who suggests a different interpretative framework of archaeological contexts and rituals.

Rethinking the Ancient Druids

An Archaeological Perspective

Author: Miranda Aldhouse-Green

Publisher: University of Wales Press

ISBN:

Category: History

Page: 224

View: 335

Ancient Classical authors have painted the Druids in a bad light, defining them as a barbaric priesthood, who 2,000 years ago perpetrated savage and blood rites in ancient Britain and Gaul in the name of their gods. Archaeology tells a different and more complicated story of this enigmatic priesthood, a theocracy with immense political and sacred power. This book explores the tangible ‘footprint’ the Druids have left behind: in sacred spaces, art, ritual equipment, images of the gods, strange burial rites and human sacrifice. Their material culture indicates how close was the relationship between Druids and the spirit-world, which evidence suggests they accessed through drug-induced trance.

Doubling Back

Ten Paths Trodden in Memory

Author: Linda Cracknell

Publisher: Cargo Publishing

ISBN:

Category: Sports & Recreation

Page: 268

View: 350

A beautiful, fascinating and moving memoir where the author retraces ten walks undertaken by others, from the Highlands of Scotland to the Swiss Alps and Kenya. Doubling Back is a fascinating and moving account of walking in the footsteps of others. In 1952 Linda Cracknell's father embarked on a hike through the Swiss Alps. Fifty years later Linda retraces that fateful journey, following the trail of the man she barely knew. This collection of walking tales takes its theme from that pilgrimage. The walks trace the contours of history, following writers, relations and retreading ways across mountains, valleys and coasts formerly trodden by drovers, saints and adventurers. Each walk is about the reaffirming of memories, beliefs and emotions, and especially of the connection that one can have with the past through particular places. This book celebrates life, family, friendship and walking through landscapes richly textured with stories. Doubling Back is a masterwork of travel writing in the vein of Robert Macfarlane and Roger Deakin, lyrical, poignant, and with stunning descriptions of the landscapes Linda Cracknell leads us through.

Death and Burial in Iron Age Britain

Author: Dennis William Harding

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN:

Category: History

Page: 328

View: 232

In this volume, Harding examines the deposition of Iron Age human and animal remains in Britain and challenges the assumption that there should have been any regular form of cemetery in prehistory, arguing that the dead were more commonly integrated into settlements of the living than segregated into dedicated cemeteries.

Religion in Britain from the Megaliths to Arthur

An Archaeological and Mythological Exploration

Author: Robin Melrose

Publisher: McFarland

ISBN:

Category: Religion

Page: 284

View: 957

The Druids and the Arthurian legends are all most of us know about early Britain, from the Neolithic to the Iron Age (4500 BC-AD 43). Drawing on archaeological discoveries and medieval Welsh texts like the Mabinogion, this book explores the religious beliefs of the ancient Britons before the coming of Christianity, beginning with the megaliths--structures like Stonehenge--and the role they played in prehistoric astronomy. Topics include the mysterious Beaker people of the Early Bronze Age, Iron Age evidence of the Druids, the Roman period and the Dark Ages. The author discusses the myths of King Arthur and what they tell us about paganism, as well as what early churches and monasteries reveal about the enigmatic Druids.

Between Worlds

Understanding Ritual Cave Use in Later Prehistory

Author: Lindsey Büster

Publisher: Springer

ISBN:

Category: Social Science

Page: 270

View: 738

The recent resurgence of academic interest in caves has demonstrated the central roles they played as arenas for ritual, ceremony and performance, and their importance within later prehistoric cosmologies. Caves represent very particular types of archaeological site and require novel approaches to their recording, interpretation and presentation. This is especially true in understanding the ritual use of caves, when the less tangible aspects of these environments would have been fundamental to the practices taking place within them. Between Worlds explores new theoretical frameworks that examine the agency of these enduring 'natural' places and the complex interplay between environment, taphonomy and human activity. It also showcases the application of innovative technologies, such as 3D laser-scanning and acoustic modelling, which provide new and exciting ways of capturing the experiential qualities of these enigmatic sites. Together, these developments offer more nuanced understandings of the role of caves in prehistoric ritual, and allow for more effective communication, management and presentation of cave archaeology to a wide range of audiences.

The Iron Age in Northern Britain

Britons and Romans, Natives and Settlers

Author: Dennis W. Harding

Publisher: Taylor & Francis

ISBN:

Category: Social Science

Page: 406

View: 886

The Iron Age in Northern Britain examines the archaeological evidence for earlier Iron Age communities from the southern Pennines to the Northern and Western Isles and the impact of Roman expansion on local populations, through to the emergence of historically-recorded communities in the post-Roman period. The text has been comprehensively revised and expanded to include new discoveries and to take account of advanced techniques, with many new and updated illustrations. The volume presents a comprehensive picture of the ‘long Iron Age’, allowing readers to appreciate how perceptions of Iron Age societies have changed significantly in recent years. New material in this second edition also addresses the key issues of social reconstruction, gender, and identity, as well as assessing the impact of developer-funded archaeology on the discipline. Drawing on recent excavation and research and interpreting evidence from key studies across Scotland and northern England, The Iron Age in Northern Britain continues to be an accessible and authoritative study of later prehistory in the region.

Pagan Britain

Author: Ronald Hutton

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN:

Category: History

Page: 400

View: 959

Britain's pagan past, with its mysterious monuments, atmospheric sites, enigmatic artifacts, bloodthirsty legends, and cryptic inscriptions, is both enthralling and perplexing to a resident of the twenty-first century. In this ambitious and thoroughly up-to-date book, Ronald Hutton reveals the long development, rapid suppression, and enduring cultural significance of paganism, from the Paleolithic Era to the coming of Christianity. He draws on an array of recently discovered evidence and shows how new findings have radically transformed understandings of belief and ritual in Britain before the arrival of organized religion. Setting forth a chronological narrative, Hutton along the way makes side visits to explore specific locations of ancient pagan activity. He includes the well-known sacred sites—Stonehenge, Avebury, Seahenge, Maiden Castle, Anglesey—as well as more obscure locations across the mainland and coastal islands. In tireless pursuit of the elusive “why” of pagan behavior, Hutton astonishes with the breadth of his understanding of Britain’s deep past and inspires with the originality of his insights.

Picts, Gaels and Scots

Early Historic Scotland

Author: Sally M Foster

Publisher: Birlinn

ISBN:

Category: History

Page: 144

View: 890

Early historic Scotland - from the fifth to the tenth century AD - was home to a variety of diverse peoples and cultures, all competing for land and supremacy. Yet by the eleventh century it had become a single, unified kingdom, known as Alba, under a stable and successful monarchy. How did this happen, and when? At the heart of this mystery lies the extraordinary influence of the Picts and of their neighbours, the Gaels - originally immigrants from Ireland. In this new and revised edition of her acclaimed book, Sally M. Foster establishes the nature of their contribution and, drawing on the latest archaeological evidence and research, highlights a huge number of themes, including the following: • The origins of the Picts and Gaels • The significance of the remarkable Pictish symbols and other early historic sculpture • The art of war and the role of kingship in tribal society • Settlement, agriculture, industry and trade • Religious beliefs and the impact of Christianity • How the Picts and Gaels became Scots.