Badger
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Badger
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7:46 PM - May 17, 2012 #11

On a day threatening rain you really do not want to see this on the window of a truck that seems to belong to one of the Trust staffers!

It seems to advertise a life boat service.
But we got the day in anyway, although all were covered in mud by days end.

Here is the stepped trench over in Anaerobe Gulch. Surprisingly the finds have gotten scanty near the bottom. Doesn't most refuse sink?



I found the wine amphora Justin mentions. Quite a few fragments, although I fear not the part where the label would usually be painted on. Here is the impressive part:


Finally, arising from the deeps of a trench at the end of the day, the muddy skull of a pre-Hadrianic Roman cavalry horse!

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SacoHarry
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8:08 PM - May 17, 2012 #12

Awesome skull! So it's certain that the ditch you're working in is one of the pre-Hadrianic ones? That's pretty fantastic. Help me out with the orientation -- I assume the trench is running northish/southish, making it probably the western defensive ditch of one of the larger early forts. Is that right?
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Badger
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10:06 PM - May 17, 2012 #13

Harry
As I said, the skull came from an adjacent ditch. In this case to the south of the aqueduct, in sort of the western range of what I call "Sunny Valley". There are cuts down to virgin clay in this area as previously photographed. Pre-Had was Andy's comment.
TW
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Badger
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7:45 PM - May 18, 2012 #14

I think we can just gloss over some of the usual update stuff. Weather-ick, but at least we got a full five days in this week. Trenches-water, water. Schedule for excavations continues to be challenged.

But, as you can tell from Justin's Twitter message......

May I introduce V2012T/1, the first writing tablet of the season. It is being gently cradled by Kate prior to making a quick trip to the conservation lab.


A few notes. This is not a typical Vindolanda tablet, being thicker and more of the type known as stylus tablets. These are coated with wax which provides a re-usable writing surface. Sort of like an ancient Etch-a-Sketch for those of you familiar with such. The wax seldom survives in Vindolanda conditions.

In fact this is not even a typical stylus tablet, but is clearly of that kind of wood, with clean edges and polished surfaces.

After an hour or so the word came up from the lab....writing visible!

Of course, the tablet was found by a first time digger, Claire. She had also in the last couple of days unearthed a bronze belt buckle and a jet ring. Were she not such a delightful person it would be easy to look up from less productive trenches and glare daggers at her!

The tablet is the big news of the week, and little else demands report. Unless of course you would like to see a picture of Justin cutting the birthday cake for Kieren, one of our Canadian diggers. With a shovel.

Oh, you would like to see that? As a finale to my last Vindo site report for 2012, I am happy to oblige.



Tim Wolter
aka Badger


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Brinno
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8:21 PM - May 18, 2012 #15

A great find indeed. In which trench has it been found?
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MBetz
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9:10 PM - May 18, 2012 #16

First time digger's luck strikes again! Well done Claire, and everyone else who has been digging. Great stories and photos.
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Badger
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3:57 AM - May 19, 2012 #17

Brinno/Pierre

Although we have permission to post pictures and discuss things like this I think a little bit of ambiguity is called for. Sure, nobody could sneak onto the site in the dark and find a writing tablet. Not in a million years. But pointing out one spot might just tempt the foolish. Let us just say it was more than a shovel length away from where you were digging!

Sometimes archeology is funny. Jeff did yeoman's service in a deep trench for most of the week. Just a lot of anaerobic dirt with scattered finds. Claire, in a spot that did not look immediatly promising, found amazing things.

Badger/T.Wolter
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Claire_M
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6:12 AM - May 19, 2012 #18

Thanks for posting the pic of it Badger - I failed to take one, is there some way of downloading it?

Yes, I definitely had beginner's luck. The horse's head was pretty awesome though, and there was talk of finding out what wine was in the amphora - vintage vindolandese, I'd say. The dig is a team effort anyway; some poor sod had to deturf the top of where I found the tablet but didn't get the find. I had a lot of fun, met some cool folks, and hope to be back next year. Will be keeping up via wedig til then.

Last edited by Claire_M on 6:14 AM - May 19, 2012, edited 1 time in total.
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Mike C
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8:49 AM - May 19, 2012 #19

Well done Claire, looks like you have a wonderfull week & had some wonderfull finds.
It looks like it was well worth it, after all your posts, finding out what to bring Etc!
I'm there for my 5th season next week, hope you young ones have left something for us oldies to do.
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Fiona D
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Fiona D
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1:19 PM - May 19, 2012 #20



Just to let Ian and Martin know - under all our hard work digging out rubbish in week 6, so there was definitely something worth digging for!

Cheers
Fiona


Last edited by Fiona D on 1:20 PM - May 19, 2012, edited 1 time in total.
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