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From Aug 2006 - Nov 2013 WeDig provided a live forum for diggers & fans of Vindolanda. It has now been mothballed and will be maintained as a live archive.

Here you will find preserved 7 years of conversation, photos, & knowledge about a site many people love. Vindolanda gets under the skin. (Figuratively and literally as a volunteer excavator!) It's a place you remember, filled with people you remember!

Thanks for 7 great years!

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Another quick update. I know, seems like radio silence here. I promise there are things happening in the background. The '09 season opens in just over a month, and WeDig will celebrate by unveiling a couple new goodies of (hopeful!) use. Both to seasoned vets and site newbies. Stay tuned!

Also, still eagerly accepting photos, recollections, plans, whatever from Justin's '07 and '08 seasons. I want to be able to post recaps like I did with Andy's '08 granaries digs, but I don't have enough yet to do honour to them.

Vindolanda: Clock or calendar?
I like the water-clock idea. Seemed a bit funny to make a big bronze disk with a peg in it that served no other purpose than saying, "Yep, it's Tuesday!" Being part of something more astronomical seems to make good sense. I Google'd "anaphoric clock" and found an interesting description at the Perseus Project. Brief excerpt:

"The anaphoric clock consists of a rotating star map behind a fixed, wire representation of the meridian, the horizon, the equator and the two tropics. The fixed disk consists of several concentric circles, divided into twenty-four sections by a series of small arcs. Each section represents one hour of the day. Because the long arc extending from one end of the disk to the other is the horizon, the first hour of the day begins on the right side of the disk at the horizon. The twelve hours of the day are above the horizon, and the twelve hours of the night are below the horizon. A stereographic map of the ecliptic was attached behind this fixed representation. Although circular in shape, the ecliptic did not rotate around its center. To accurately represent the daily path of the sun, the ecliptic rotated around a point approximately halfway between the center and the bottom edge of the circle. The ecliptic would complete one rotation around this point every day. Furthermore, the ecliptic was fashioned with 365 holes around its circumference, one for every day of the year, in which was placed a peg to represent the sun. The year began at the vernal equinox, and after each daily rotation of the ecliptic the peg would advance to the next hole along the perimeter of the ecliptic. However, the ecliptic was reset each day so that the peg always began at the horizon. The anaphoric clock was both a clock and a calendar, illustrating the both the time of day and the progression of the sun along the ecliptic."

The description says that the moving disk had 365 holes drilled in, whereas Vindolanda's seems like it only had half that. But if it was a "down-market" product like the Current Archaeology article says, maybe that makes sense.

At any rate, it's a seriously cool little piece of scrap!

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Just revamped the Granary 1 and Granary 2 2008 excavation pages. Managed to discard the unnecessary forum-style bits and make them clean, straight Web pages. Hopefully this'll add to their value, and also give a good template as more of these pages go up. Take a look, and let me know what you think!

The '09 dig season is fast approaching. We're working hard behind the scenes now on a new range of pages that will hopefully get everybody's blood flowing as the season ramps up.