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Justin Blake's official Vindolanda excavation Twitter feed

Unless otherwise noted, all plans below are unofficial interpretations only.
They are meant to help orient diggers & friends.
They are not designed to scale, nor to imply archaeological accuracy.

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Week 12; 18 June - 22 June
Topic Started: Jun 18 2012, 07:15 AM (1,198 Views)
SacoHarry
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Placeholder for Wk 12. What's happening? Justin's tweet this morning shows an ever-wider trench at the west of the site (7 & 8 on previous weekly maps) as the lower ground stays waterlogged.

Hope for a great week of digging & lots of pictures & stories!

- Harry
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SacoHarry
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A teaser panorama shot of areas 7/8 from snowglobe. So much progress, so many stones & ditches!
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(larger shot available here.)
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SacoHarry
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As promised, more shots from snowglobe.

First, a recap of the plan -- this is now a couple weeks out of date. Sites 7/8 are greatly expanded. 4/5 seem to be flooded and not being worked this week? (Will update site plan soon!)
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On to snowglobe's shots & comments:
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"The heavy rain last week is still having an effect on the site" (area 5 from digger site plans)

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"Justin has pumped out the ditch looking north, huge feature. Not sure how things are being worked as I'm over the road now." (area 4b looking north)

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"The trenches reach the diggers hut! Two very fine walls bottom centre of the photo. Andy still unsure as to what they are?" (area 7/8)

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"Another feature in the trench closest to the diggers hut, drain ?"
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SacoHarry
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More from snowglobe, this time over in the North Field:

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"As Justin's tweet, Andy has been with us today digging, lovely and interesting lump of iron stone (centre left in the ditch)"

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"Arrh the lovely smell of anaerobic layers beginning. Our own girl band in the background tuning up ! The road running west/east in the middle photo." (The ditches mentioned in Week 11 appear now to be clearly the sides of a well-laid road running east-west. Big questions on what it is -- and what era!)

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"Andy pondering the road, is this line of the Stane gate? Unsure of the ages of the ditches, collected plenty of victorian pottery from the layer above the road"
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SacoHarry
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Lastly, two cool panorama shots from snowglobe:


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"The north field using my new iPhone app looking west"
(Larger shot available here.)

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"Plenty of diggers this week so having staggered tea breaks"
(Larger shot available here.)

Thanks much for all the great shots and commentary!
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SacoHarry
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More today from snowglobe:

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"Work progressing in the north field. North/south ditch now seems to have flagged base? Interesting lump of iron stone in the centre?"

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"The road has been recorded, now Chris is tracking an interesting ditch to the north side"

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"The field drain to the south of the road has been cleared, unknown date, last thing a north/south drain appeared (centre left) will carry on uncovering it tomorrow. The ice cream kiosk is doing a roaring trade at the west gate, a big hit with the diggers."

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"Here Alex is surveying the road, Chris looking at a ditch feature behind."

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"Here fellow diggers defining the edge of a large west/east ditch in the north field, very slim on dating evidence but thick with iron pan! Organic material could be close."

Thanks again Pete!
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SacoHarry
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Justin, interesting idea re that satellite shot. I noticed on one of snowglobe's pictures from a couple days ago what looks like a farm track running just past the southern edge of the trench. Picture attached. But I don't know if that's the same feature or is just from a recent tractor pass.

At any rate, I'm guessing Andy & crew had good reasons for opening the trench precisely where they did. It'd be awesome if they're finding on the ground just what they were seeing in the air.
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Attachments: Wk_12___12_edited.jpg (178.43 KB)
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SacoHarry
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Also, the Canadian team has posted a nice update on the work they're doing in the vicus: http://westernclassicalstudies.wordpress.com/2012/06/19/in-the-vicus-excavating-at-vindolanda/

Excerpt: "...Following a drain feature further South within the trench. This has thus far involved de-turfing a new area, troweling back our uncovered ground, and exposing uncovered features and changes in the make-up of the soil. As the sun has been shining (quite surprisingly!) and the dirt is quite wet (not at all surprising!) it has been very hard but still very pleasurable work. Signs of life abound and we are constantly uncovering pottery and animal bones all good signals that this area was well lived in by ancient peoples."

Good photos of area 7/8 too.
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SacoHarry
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snowglobe's last set of pics say it all:

First, two from a very brief Thursday:
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"Hi, terrible weather here but an hour of digging was completed. Alex removing the iron stone Block using surgical techniques!"

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"Hi, the site this afternoon, rain may be slowing down ?"

It wasn't slowing down. Two from this morning.
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"Hi my walk down the stane gate to the site this morning was a wet one, all called off and goodbyes said, hopefully will get some photos next week. Seems they are on the verge of cracking the water source on site. Two more water tanks appearing, now underwater."

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"Hi,the burn is running fast and may convert the Vindolanda temple into an aquarium?"

Well, the new water tanks sound exciting! My guess is that right about now, they're full.
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