Saturday, January 14, 2012

Boat at Dover- archaelolgical find

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Phase One


The website analyzed, was found on the 18th of February 00, at http//www.archaeology.co.uk/timeline/prehistory/dover/dover.htm . The text is a shortened version of the article in Current Archaeology1.


Phase Two


Question 1


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http//www.archaeology.co.uk/timeline/prehistory/dover/dover.htm


Question


a)


The Times New Roman font is an easy font to read, but at size 1 the words seem to collect on op of each other.


b)


The site is very easy to find, all the links on the previous page are clearly labeled, but this site has no links to pages with more information.


c)


This web page has direct links to further information on the Bronze Age Boat at Dover.


d)


This Website has good content, being written by the Field Director of the dig; furthermore, all the images have labels.


e)


This Website only has one heading, but it is very descriptive of the article.


f)


The computer that I used has a lot of memory, so it can download images fairly quickly, so assuming that most other computers have the same amount of memory as my computer has, then yes, it does download quickly.


Phase Three


The author’s credentials and/or bibliography


The author of this site is a Canterbury Archaeological Trust member, and the Field Director of the dig. Although there is no bibliography attached to the end of this document, excluding a reference note to see the magazine issue it was in (Current Archaeology 1), I feel that the website has a little more credentials because of the author’s responsibility at the site.


The aim/purpose of the site


The aim of this website is to provide a loose understanding of the dig that was disrupting the main road at Dover in 11. It also offers some explanations as to the significance of the findings


Phase Four


Method of Site Location


This Bronze Age Boat was discovered by accident while digging up the main road, to replace the Victorian sewers and to widen the road at Dover in 11. The workers came across the boat six meters below the surface.


Method of Excavation


As the plan for the completion of the road works was on a tight schedule, the recovery archaeologists had only a few days to move the boat to a more secure site. The recovery team originally had only three days to remove the boat, but this was later extended to six to complete the removal.


The boat, if it had been moved in one long piece, may have broken into smaller pieces due to stress. The recovery team decided that it would be safer and easier to store and transport if it was cut into pieces. By cutting the boat into sections, the boat was more manageable and easier to transport.


The boat was stored in a temporary tank that was provided by the Dover Harbour Board to keep the boat safe, until a suitable team could be found to restore and preserve the boat.


Finds


The boat at Dover was found in 11. It was an almost complete structure, with two-thirds having been recovered. This bulky boat was made with three very large, very old oak trees. The boat was held together with yew-withies, roping the planks together. To keep the boat waterproofed, the boat makers utilized a technique, now known as “stopping”. This process involves pressing animal fats into the places where the boat is bound to leak (stitch holes and seams), and covering with thickly packed moss.


As there were some wear marks and repairs to the hull, it appears that the boat was used often, this can also be seen in the piece of unworked shale that was found in the hull, and believed to come from 56 kilometers away, from Kimmeridge Bay.


Around the site, in higher stratum, the archaeologists found evidence of other cultures and civilisations. Further away from the original site a Roman harbour wall and a medieval town wall was also found.


Specialists Involved


Some of the main organisations involved were the English Heritage, Dover Harbour Board, Dover Museum, Dover Bronze Age Boat Trust, the Mary Rose Trust and the Canterbury Archaeological Trust (the CAT). The Field Director, Keith Parfitt, organised the dig, while Peter Clark was the project manager for the re-assembling team.


At the ‘dig’ stage, the CAT, Dover Harbour Board and the English Heritage were the most involved. CAT supplied archaeologists, specialists and experts. The Dover Harbour Board allowed the boat to be stored in the sections, and the English Heritage supplying specialists, workers and funding.


At re-assembly, the CAT donated more specialists, experts, workers etc. The Mary Rose Trust took part with preserving and the Dover Museum � a gallery to display and to store the re-assembled boat.


Various scientists and experts were also involved, with radio-carbon testing carried out to date the boat and palaeoenvironmental sampling to gauge an impression of the land.


Dating the Boat


When the boat was first discovered, Dr. Ted Wright, who had discovered similar, bronze-age boats at North Ferriby, tentatively dated the boat to be in the Bronze Age. To give the boat an exact date, radio-carbon testing was carried out, dating the boat at approximately 1600 BC, in the middle of the Bronze Age.


Evaluating the Significance of the Finds


Through the use of palaeoenvironmental sampling, much about the landscape has been discovered. The boat was possibly abandoned about 10 years after it had it had been made, up a freshwater, shallow chanel. Experts have theorised that there may have been a settlement nearby, evidence of domestic rubbish has founded these theories, along with the remains of the Roman and Medieval walls found only meters away. The study of pollen, seeds, insects ect. found in the soil samples may possibly tell us the position of the sea 000 years ago.


When reconstructing the boat, the workers learned about the sequence of boat building in ancient times and the types of tools that were used to make a boat. Inadvertantly, the workers may have also discovered the the boat was made in a rush. When recreating the boat, the markings that were made from the use of the different tools were different, cleaner than the marks of the original boat. This suggests that the makers of the Dover Boat were either in a hurry to get the boat functional and operating. They were not obviously interested in the appearance of the boat.


About 0 kilometers away, at North Ferriby, in Lincoln shire, similar boats have been discovered. Unlike the Dover boat, paddles have also been found. It has been speculated that the boats at North Ferriby were used for travel across the Humber River. The Dover Boat was also thought to have been a ferrying style of craft. The piece of unworked shale that was found in the hull has dispersed that theory.


The piece of shale, and the wear marks on the bottom of the boat lead many to believe that the boat was used for longer trips, along the English coast, to trade with other villages, but that the boat would not have been able to be put to sea in large swells, but in fine weather would be able to do about 5 to 10 knots.


The information gained from this site, has helped the archaeologists, historians and even the general public to know about the past. It has brought and insightful view into the ways of the Bronze Age peoples in Britain, and has allowed us to explore the environment of a time lost to us.





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