The Birsay Bay Project Volume 3: The Brough of Birsay, Orkney: Investigations 1954-2014 [Hardback]

Christopher D. Morris(Author); Rachel Barrowman(Editor)

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ISBN: 9781789256079 | Published by: Oxbow Books | Year of Publication: 2021 | 784p, H11.7 x W8.3, color
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The Birsay Bay Project Volume 3

Details

The Brough of Birsay was the power-center of the Viking earldom of Orkney and is one of Historic Environment Scotland’s key monuments and visitor attractions on the islands. This publication is the culmination of 60 years of investigations that took place on the site between 1954 and 2014.

This new volume incorporates comprehensive accounts of work undertaken by Dr Ralegh Radford and Mr Stewart Cruden between 1954 and 1964, excavations by the Viking and Early Settlement Research Project under the direction of the author on site between 1974 and 1981, a rescue excavation in 1993, a geophysical survey in 2007 and archival research up to 2014.

Specialist artifactual and palaeobiological studies of metallurgical material, ogham inscriptions and a gilt-bronze mount of Insular origin are included, together with reanalysis of the radiocarbon dates from all sites in Birsay Bay, and a reassessment of the architecture and dating of the church and related buildings on the Brough itself.

The final two chapters put the Brough, as both a Pictish power-center and the hub of the Viking earldom, in the overall context of Birsay Bay and Viking and late Norse Orkney, and the wider world between the Pictish and late Norse/Medieval periods.

As well as being the author’s third and final volume reporting on work for the Birsay Bay Project, this volume completes a trilogy of studies of the Brough itself, alongside Mrs Cecil Curle’s and Prof John Hunter’s earlier monographs.

Table of Contents

List of illustrations

List of tables

Preface

Acknowledgements

PART I BACKGROUND AND CONTEXT FOR INVESTIGATIONS 1946-2014

1 BACKGROUND

2 THE BIRSAY BAY PROJECT AND THE BROUGH OF BIRSAY

PART II AREA I: THE CHURCH AND CHURCHYARD

3 HISTORICAL BACKGROUND TO THE 1950s-1960s INVESTIGATIONS AT THE CHURCH, ASSOCIATED BUILDINGS AND CHURCHYARD ON THE BROUGH OF BIRSAY by C A Ralegh Radford

4 INVESTIGATIONS BY RALEGH RADFORD AND STEWART CRUDEN ON THE CHURCH

5 INVESTIGATIONS BY RALEGH RADFORD AND STEWART CRUDEN ON THE BUILDINGS NORTH OF THE CHURCH

6 AN ARCHITECTURAL ANALYSIS OF THE CHURCH AND RELATED BUILDINGS ON THE BROUGH OF BIRSAY by Richard Fawcett

7 THE GRAVES, CHURCHYARD ENCLOSURES AND NOTABLE STONE MONUMENTS

8 REASSESSMENT OF THE ‘CELTIC ENCLOSURE’ IN 1981

PART III AREA II: THE BUILDINGS EAST OF THE CHURCHYARD

9 INVESTIGATIONS BY RADFORD AND CRUDEN ON THE AREA TO THE EAST OF THE CHURCHYARD (‘THE VIKING HOUSE’) AND EXCAVATIONS IN ‘ROOM 5’ OF THE ‘SMALL BUILDINGS’ IN 1973/4

10 EXPLORATIONS IN 1993 ON THE CLIFF-SIDE TO THE SOUTH-EAST OF THE CHURCHYARD

PART IV AREA III: THE BUILDINGS WEST OF THE CHURCHYARD

11 INVESTIGATIONS BY RADFORD AND CRUDEN ON THE BUILDINGS TO THE SOUTH-WEST OF THE CHURCHYARD

CHAPTER 12 AREA EXCAVATIONS 1974-80 IN AND AROUND STRUCTURE N

13 AREA EXCAVATIONS IN 1974-5 IN AND AROUND STRUCTURE L AND TRIAL EXCAVATIONS IN 1977 ON FEATURES AROUND STRUCTURE M

14 AREA EXCAVATIONS IN 1977-80 ON AND AROUND STRUCTURE E TO THE WEST OF THE CHURCHYARD

15 AREA EXCAVATIONS IN 1977-81 ON AND AROUND STRUCTURES ‘S’ AND B TO THE WEST AND NORTH-WEST OF THE CHURCHYARD AND RE-ASSESSMENT OF THE DATING OF STRUCTURES F, P AND R TO THE NORTH

16 SPECIALIST STUDIES RELATING TO AREA III

PART V THE SOUTH-WESTERN CLIFF-SIDE AREA

17 SURVEY AND TRIAL INVESTIGATIONS 1979 AND RE-ASSESSMENT OF THE DATING OF SITES VIII AND IX

18 INVESTIGATIONS ON THE PEERIE BROUGH 1979-81

PART VI ECONOMY, LANDSCAPE AND ANALYSIS

19 THE ARTEFACTUAL ASSEMBLAGE by Colleen E Batey with Christopher D Morris and J Gerry McDonnell

20 THE BIOLOGICAL ASSEMBLAGE by Christopher D Morris based on work by D James Rackham with others

21 GEOPHYSICAL PROSPECTION 2007 ON THE BROUGH OF BIRSAY by Susan Ovenden and David W Griffiths

22 OVERALL RE-ASSESSMENT OF RADIOCARBON DATES FROM BIRSAY by Zoe Outram

23 THE BIRSAY BAY LANDSCAPE GEOPHYSICAL SURVEYS 2003-6 by David W Griffiths with Susan Ovenden

PART VII PULLING THE THREADS TOGETHER

24 THE BROUGH OF BIRSAY AND THE BIRSAY BAY IN RETROSPECT

25 AN OVERVIEW AND FINAL ASSESSMENT

Coda

Appendices

1 Summary of the C-14 dating evidence produced from Areas I, III, IV North, IV South and Room 5 from the excavations carried out on the Brough of Birsay 1973-1981 by Zoe Outram

2 Re-calibrated C-14 dates from excavations on Brough of Birsay by John Hunter (from Hunter 1986: Table 2) by Zoe Outram

3 Re-calibrated C-14 dates from Birsay Bay Excavations Volume 1 (1989) by Zoe Outram

4 Re-calibrated C-14 dates from Birsay Bay Excavation Volume 2 (1996) by Zoe Outram

5 Re-calibrated C-14 dates from Buckquoy (Brundle, Lorimer and Ritchie 2003 and Barrett 2003) by Zoe Outram

6 Re-calibrated C-14 dates from Saevar Howe (Stenhouse and Hedges 1983) by Zoe Outram

7 Radiocarbon dating at Birsay: Sampled material and methodology by Zoe Outram

8 Slag classification by J Gerry McDonnell

9 References to Scottish oghams mentioned in text by Katherine Forsyth

10 Species list (English and Latin names for the species) of plant and animal remains identified at the Brough of Birsay by D James Rackham

Bibliography

1 Primary sources consulted

2 Secondary Sources

Index

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