Tag Archives: Anglo-Saxon

Viking stones missing from Darlington church

The attention of all CBA North Members is drawn to this recent press release by Durham Constabulary that was issued this afternoon. If you can help in any way please see the contact details at the end of this message;

POLICE are investigating the possible theft of three nationally-important early Medieval sculptured stones from the remains of a church on the outskirts of Darlington.

All Saints Church in Sockburn, which is to the south of Neasham and near the border with North Yorkshire is a national monument and a rare surviving example of a pre- and post-Norman Conquest church site and graveyard.

It contains a rare collection of late 9th and 10th century Viking sculptured stone, unrivalled in the country.

The church discovered the loss of the items last week and notified police, but it’s thought they could have gone missing at any point since September 2015.

The three items missing are;
• a well-preserved fragment of a carved bear’s head, possibly from a hogback –  a Viking grave marker – dating to the 9th or 10th centuries which measures 24.5cm at its widest;
• a fragment of Viking runic inscription which translated means “in memory of Mael-Muriel/…raised cross”, also dating to the same period,  21cm x 18cm x 9.5cm
• and a fragment of a Medieval cross slab carved with a small sword, measuring 43cm x 13cm.

The officer in the case, PC Simon Hopper said; “These items have significant historical value and might have been taken by someone with a genuine passion in this field who thought they could be better preserved elsewhere.

“It could also be the case they have been removed by someone who thought they would look nice in their garden and did not realise their value. But of course there is also the obvious possibility they have been stolen for potential monetary gain.”

Carol Pyrah, Planning Director for Historic England in the North East said: “We are extremely concerned about the loss of these early Medieval stones not only because they are works of art in their own right but also because of their contribution to the significance of this nationally-important archaeological site.

“We will continue to work with the owner and the police to raise awareness of their loss and hopefully to expedite their recovery.”

A spokesperson for the Diocese of Durham said; “The removal of these important artefacts is of great concern. We would ask anyone who has any information that would lead to their safe return to come forward and contact the police as soon as possible.

“Many of our churches both open and closed, as in this case have items of historical importance and making them available to our communities is clearly part of our open door policy. However, that is no excuse for the wanton removal of any items as this is a crime which affects the whole community.”

The collection of stones was catalogued in 1905 and then again in 1984 when they were added to the ‘Corpus of Anglo Saxon Sculpture’.

Anyone with information on the missing artefacts is urged to call police on 101 or to contact the independent charity, Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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Early Medieval Europe Debates

Early Medieval Europe Debates is a new interdisciplinary initiative by the Departments of Archaeology and History at Durham University. All are welcome to attend EMED events. Seminars take place in the Department of Archaeology on the Science Site at 17.15 pm in room D210 (not D217) in the Dawson Building. Forthcoming seminars include:

Judith Jesch, University of Nottingham
Vikings beyond boundaries: migration and diaspora in the Viking Age and after
Thursday, 21st January

Orla Murphy, University College Cork
Early Medieval Textual Transmissions: Visual Media and the Movement of Ideas
Thursday, 18th February

Chris Scull, University College London/ University of Cardiff
Recent discoveries at Rendlesham: the archaeology and contexts of a 7th-century East Anglian royal settlement
Thursday, 10th March

E M E D is a new joint initiative by Helen Foxhall Forbes (History) and Sarah Semple (Archaeology). For further information contact the Seminar Assistant Tristan Lake (Tristan.Lake@Durham.ac.uk).

Seminars will take place in the Department of Archaeology on the Science Site in room D210 (not D217) and will be followed by drinks and usually by dinner with the speaker. If you wish to come for dinner please contact Tristan on the Tuesday before the seminar at the latest.

[Please see the attached EMED, 21.01.2016 poster for the details of previous seminars in this series].

Places of Power and the Making of Early Medieval Kingdoms: New Archaeological Perspectives from Lyminge, Kent

Places of Power and the Making of Early Medieval Kingdoms: New Archaeological Perspectives from Lyminge, Kent

20th October 2015, 17:30, Learning Centre, Palace Green Library, the speaker is Dr Gabor Thomas of the University of Reading

This lecture is followed by a drinks reception at the Cafe, Palace Green Library.

Please note that places are limited and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. To book a place visit:  https://www.dur.ac.uk/imems/events/seminarseries/booking/

 Abstract: This paper reflects upon the results of a major scheme of excavation targeting Anglo-Saxon settlement remains preserved beneath the modern village of Lyminge, Kent, led by the University of Reading and funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. Encapsulating the detailed examination of a seventh-century ‘great hall’ complex and the outer zones of a documented monastic foundation, these investigations have furnished one of the richest developmental accounts of a royal centre in Anglo-Saxon England. This paper will examine Lyminge’s trajectory as an Anglo-Saxon settlement over the fifth-ninth centuries A.D. and consider its implications for wider interpretations of early medieval kingship and power.

Gabor Thomas is Associate Professor in Early Medieval Archaeology at the Department of Archaeology, University of Reading. He has varied interests in the material culture and settlement archaeology of the early medieval period and is well known both as a field director and an expert in later Anglo-Saxon and Viking-age metalwork, the subject of his PhD at UCL. Previous to Lyminge, he completed a major excavation at the later Anglo-Saxon settlement at Bishopstone, Sussex, published by the Council for British Archaeology in 2010.

 

Contact admin.imems@durham.ac.uk for more information about this event.

 

 

Festival of Archaeology 2015: Living History with St. Cuthbert’s Land

Living History with St. Cuthbert’s Land

Sat 11th Jul 2015 – Sun 12th Jul 2015

St. Cuthbert’s Land bring archaeology to life with a living encampment at Bamburgh Castle. They will be demonstrating military training as well as bringing to life the Anglo-Saxon lifestyle with ongoing cooking and weaving by their group.

For more information see:

http://www.archaeologyfestival.org.uk/events/1639

Bede’s World Saturday Lecture 27th June

Excavation of two Anglo-Saxon period farmsteads in Brows Pasture, Chapel-le-Dale, North Yorkshire.

David Johnson from the Yorkshire Dales Landscape Research Trust will be talking on the above topic at Bede’s World on Saturday 27th June

The talks start at 12pm, and generally last for an hour

Durham University Archaeology Society talk – Saturday 6th June

The Durham University Archaeology Society would like to invite everyone to a talk on pan-European brooches and the style, mortuary context and use of identity and the Cruciform Brooch in Early Anglo‐Saxon England by Doctor Toby Martin in Hatfield College Chapel, North Bailey, Durham at 13:00 for 13:15 on Saturday, 6 June 2015. Please feel free to publicise this widely (see the attached Poster – The lustre of power), with non-members bringing a pound please.

Toby is working on women’s jewellery and dress as vehicles for constructing early medieval and transregional identities from the 4th to the 7th centuries AD. His research encompasses bow brooches in Europe and he seeks to identify changes and variations from areas such as Britain to the Black Sea and further.

Please go to http://www.durhamsu.com/groups/archaeology–3 to find out more about the group.