I’m doing a MOOC, a massive open on-line course in archaeology and I’ve just submitted my second assignment. I haven’t had the results from the first one yet so I’m not a hundred percent sure I’m approaching it in the right way… but I’m enjoying it, it’s making me think, and that is the main object of the exercise! Of course, as usual when something is submitted you – or maybe its just me, I always see some little mistake I’ve made, a subtle suggestion I’ve overlooked, a little phrase I’ve misread or a suggestion I’ve mis-construed… oh dear… oh well, time will tell!
There were three options, all of them quite tempting, and I might just do a little extra-curricular work by doing another assignment just for fun! However, I chose Option #1: Planning ahead – think local. The brief was to imagine that I was planning a dig in my local area and explain why and how I would undertake it…
There is an area in our village which is now a marina and boat yard but which was an old wharf with sea-going vessels docking – only small vessels, little coastal ships which would bob down the Somerset coast and on to Devon and Cornwall. There are all sorts of local stories attached to it, as the river which flows into the sea starts in the heart of Somerset and I feel sure it must always have been used to transport cargo and people through the county. So my imagined excavation would try to find out whether there are any Roman remains which would prove they had been here, or any Saxon remains which would prove there had been a so-called Dark Age settlement, or even whether Irish traders had come as far as Somerset (I’m sure they did!)
As soon as the submission date has passed I’ll share my assignment… and see if you can spot where I think I’ve made a little blunder!