Medieval Adaptation, Settlement and Economy of a Coastal Wetland: The Evidence from Around Lydd, Romney Marsh, Kent [eBook (PDF)]

Luke Barber(Author); Greg Priestley-Bell(Author)

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ISBN: 9781789256505 | Published by: Oxbow Books | Year of Publication: 2008 | Language: English 336p, 16p col pls




Medieval Adaptation, Settlement and Economy of a Coastal Wetland

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Romney Marsh is the largest coastal lowland on the south coast of England. Since 1991 excavations in advance of gravel extraction around Lydd on Romney Marsh, have uncovered large areas of medieval landscape, one of the largest to be exposed in southern England. Features uncovered include 12th-13th century drainage ditches, ditched field systems and sea defences. Also of particular significance is the identification of a series of occupation sites and their enclosures. The excavation of dispersed settlements is particularly difficult, because of the scale of work required to produce meaningful results. In this case it has been possible to work on sufficiently large areas to allow significant conclusions to be drawn. The excavations at Lydd Quarry have shown how dispersed settlement existed alongside the nucleated market settlements on Romney Marsh. This extensive report details the archaeological investigations of the field systems and occupation sites, finds and environmental material. There is also a section by Sheila Sweetinburgh on the documentary evidence. Two final chapters set out broader conclusions from the evidence for the field systems, settlements, and economy, and set the area in its wider context. The research has provided an unprecedented opportunity to study reclamation, occupation and economy of a large tract of marginal landscape through a considerable period of time.

Reviews & Quotes

"This volume reports on a pioneering and complex project, and should be very helpful in the planning of any similar, future work. The results confirm much of what previous research had only suggested, and the book is an important addition to the archaeological assessment of marshlands.'"
Jill Eddison
Landscape History (30.2, 2009)

"...this is a book worthy of being taken seriously, not only as an exemplary report of a significant archaeological find but also as a genuine historical study that can provide fodder for further research on both the region of the Kentish coastal marshes in the Middle Ages and the peasant communities who lived there.'"
Linda E. Mitchell, University of Missouri–Kansas City
Journal of British Studies 49:1 (2010)

"This is a report of great interest that shows how valuable research can be achieved through developer-funded archaeology.'"
Stephen Rippon
Journal of Medieval Archaeology, vol 53 (2009)

"...prompts some new thoughts about livestock husbandry in an area where husbandmen needed to take into account several factors peculiar to marshland farming.'"
Rosamond Faith
Journal and Annual Report of the Medieval Settlement Research Group, vol 23 (2008)

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