Anyone new to this blog or geophysics in archaeology is recommended to read the material on the “Geophysical survey in archaeology” page.
One what, I hear you say? Well, 1km2. What is 1km2? Well, that is the area covered by the mag in all the Verulamium-related surveys. Yup, one whole square kilometer. Impressive, eh? By the way, that is about 20,000,000 individual mag readings. That doesn’t include, of course, squares that had to be re-done due to sensor freezes or areas blanked out where we were wheel spinning for partial grids. Congratulations to all who have pushed that machine since the summer of 2013.
Today the mag team completed the far end of Church Meadow (Figure 2). It is great to see such a huge proportion of the field done, and much of what is left is not worth doing as it is featureless alluvium.
Figure 3 shows the details of the southern end of the survey.
Most of the new area today was either in the area impacted by the pipes, or featureless alluvium. The little partial near the road, however, found a small feature which looks like a wall with something in the middle. Given this is right next to the gate of the town, perhaps this is a mausoleum? No real way of knowing without digging it, but certainly a possibility.
The Earth Resistance team of Debbie, Tim, Denley and Ellen were on form today and completed a super nine grid, thus satisfying my need for a tidy end to a season! Figure 4 shows the results from today.
As can be seen, there are a number of wall showing clearly as dark (high resistance) lines. The room which shows most clearly is the one which can be seen on the Google Earth image. A high-pass filter shows the walls even more clearly (Figure 5).
The GPR crew, allowed down from the heights of the Theatre field, picked a 40×80 strip east-west across the middle of the buildings. Figure 6 shows the first twelve time slices.
As can be seen, the building that shows well on Google Earth is visible right from the first time slice. The stone work must be literally just under the surface. Slices 7 and 8 shows the buildings in great detail as well as that pipeline running across the plot. Figure 7 shows slice 7 on the Google Earth image.
To close out the 2019 season posts, I asked Mike Smith to take a group photograph. Not everyone who was involved this summer was there today, but Figure 8 shows a good number of us.
Many, many thanks to everyone who turned-out over the last four weeks, be it almost every day or for just an afternoon. Without the CAGG team members, this project wouldn’t achieve anything! Also, big thanks to Strutt and Parker and the Gorhambury Estate for facilitating access, and to Lord Verulam and his family for all their support. Lastly, thanks to the AHRC for funding the original project back in 2013, the Institute of Archaeology, UCL for supporting the project and the loan of the GPS and the Earth Resistance meter, and to SEAHA for the loan of the GPR.
I’m off to Sligo tomorrow morning at about 4.30am and will be presenting some of our results to the International Conference on Archaeological Prospection on Wednesday afternoon.