Deposition interrupted – The Must Farm Pile dwellings

Monday 25 March 2019, 1.00PM

Speaker(s): Mark Knight

The taphonomic conditions that led to the remarkable preservation of the Must Farm Late Bronze Age stilted settlement were also its social context. The pile dwellings were constructed in a wet environment that stayed wet over time. On top of this, a catastrophic fire destroyed the settlement apparently unexpectedly, capturing its occupation early on and mid flow - things were still in use and largely complete. In archaeological terms, the bulk of the settlement’s contents were caught pre-deposition. Excavation revealed the pile dwellings contained a lot of stuff, all of which was contemporary. In comparison to normal, and so perhaps less well preserved Late Bronze Age settlement sites, the magnitude of materials would seem to be excessive and for that reason atypical. This presentation contextualises the Must Farm pile dwellings and in doing so follows Barrett’s clarion call in attempting to ‘…grasp how little, and how unrepresentative, is the sample of deposited material recoveredarchaeologically compared with that which was actually in circulation’.

Location: The Philip Rahtz Lecture Theatre (K/133) Kings Manor

Admission: This event is free and open to all.