Friday, November 28, 2008

A Talk and a Nodule

I have just given a talk to a neighbouring Local History Group on the subject of Back Garden Archaeology. It went reasonably well considering it was touch and go whether I’d be able to do it due to a sore throat and loss of voice. My voice held out in the end. To give me strength on the day I told myself that I had volunteered to talk, it was on a topic that I enjoyed and that I wanted to do it.

There were questions and comments at the end that were encouraging. Someone asked if the stone of the pot-boilers was local and when I said it wasn’t they suggested that it had come from the coast because of its sea-tossed smoothness. Someone else suggested it could be more local than the coast and glacial in formation. All of which indicates a line of research if I can find an informative geologist somewhere.

There was some interest in the examples of slag that I had taken along. No one seemed to know if it should show signs of a metal reaction under a metal detector and anyway I had discovered that not all slag is the result of metal working anyway. So, what form of industry do the examples I have unearthed suggest? That is another line of inquiry.

I said during the talk that I had not found anything made of metal of any significance and that no worked flint had appeared. There is just one item that makes me reconsider this but I didn't mention it. It is a flint nodule of a very comfortable hand-shaped size (see the photos) that seems to be pock-marked with chips added to which it has a pointy side and a hemispherical side. I wonder whether it is natural or a tool of some kind. It is not that I am desperate to find a significant piece of flint but it would be nice considering how much has been tossed on the spoil heap.