Stonehenge: results from recent research

Stonehenge: results from recent research Mike Parker Pearson photographed by Bill Bevan

Tuesday, November 12, 2013 - 19:30

Booking: Booking required. Please contact the museum.

£8 in advance or £10 on the night (includes light refreshments).

This lecture will be yet another opportunity to find out about the exciting work conducted by Mike Parker-Pearson (Institute of Archaeology UCL) relating to Stonehenge.

The Stonehenge Riverside Project, which undertook major excavations at the henge monument of Durrington Walls and elsewhere in the Stonehenge World Heritage site between 2004 and 2009, has led to further research to explore the origin of the stones used to build Stonehenge itself. Survey and excavation has now taken place in north Wiltshire, to trace the source of the sarsens, and in west Wales, the point of origin of the smaller bluestones.

The Riverside Project has also has led to further research to explore the lives of the people of Stonehenge. The Feeding Stonehenge project is examining the huge assemblage of faunal remains from the excavations, using isotopic and other analyses to unravel the history of the domestic animals whose remains were found at Durrington Walls and other sites. By tracing the lives of the animals, archaeologists can track the movements of the people themselves. Preliminary results indicate that some of the domestic animals arrived in southern England from as far away as Scotland, opening up new questions about identity, political organisation and religious belief in the Neolithic and Early Bronze Age of Britain. Another aspect of this research has focused on the ceramic assemblage to discover what was cooked in the pottery by analysing lipid residues. This gives us a real insight into the diet of people in prehistoric times.

NOTE: The lecture will take place at Salisbury Museum. This lecture is in the Salisbury Museum Archaeology Lectures (SMAL) series.  SMAL lectures are held on the second Tuesday of the month at 7.30pm from September to April. Tickets for this lecture must be brought in advance from the museum.