We started today with an exam in the marquee! All assessed students sweated over a paper designed to squeeze out of them every last ounce of knowledge they have gained during their 2 weeks on site….
Many visitors today, past and present! I suspect that by the time this season is over I will have seen a high percentage of Silchester graduates revisiting their first experience of field archaeology.
Jane Timby came to see us today – Jane is our pottery specialist, and she provides the dating information we require in order to refine our stratigraphic sequences. A very important and influential lady! Additionally, Dr. Rowena Banerjea dropped in to look at our trench sections. Rowena’s specialism is micromorphology: she did her PhD on the microscopic slices taken through the floors and hearths of Insula IX – sections through the soil, examined under a microscope, prepared and coated in resin in order to interpret. This technique provides a wonderful additional strand of information to add to the picture excavation gives us. The story is definitely in the floors. Rowena is planning to do some further micromorphology work this season on selected areas.
A quick visit to Insula III showed that the trench is buzzing – lots of new discoveries for Mike to talk about on his 4.30pm Site Tour. Below are a couple of pictures of us at work in Insula III – note how much of field archaeology consists of standing and looking, and staring, and puzzling, and discussing….
We ended the day with the professorial tour…..Mike is beginning to put the pressure on us all. Nearly 2 weeks gone…and still much to do. We, all of us, had our backsides gently nudged by the professorial boot. This is not a holiday camp! We are here to work…and to discover……
And so our Saturday ends, as Mike fades into the sunset….