Chapter

Birdoswald: Scientific Archaeology

Richard Hingley

in Hadrian's Wall

Published in print October 2012 | ISBN: 9780199641413
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191745720 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199641413.003.0012
Birdoswald: Scientific Archaeology

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This chapter explores a programme of archaeological research conducted from the last decade of the nineteenth century to the 1940s. This work explored the date of construction, identity, and signature of these frontier works, by addressing the location, form, and sequence of the individual features of the frontier. R. G. Collingwood, one of the most influential archaeologists involved in this work, defined ‘The period of scientific excavation’ in his important article ‘Hadrian's Wall: A History of the Problem’, arguing that it commenced in 1891 and lasted until his own time. The chapter examines Collingwood's claim that archaeological studies of the Wall had become more professional and scientific. It also considers the extent to which the great era of excavation resulted in a philosophy of thought that has damaged subsequent research on the Wall.

Keywords: archaeological research; R. G. Collingwood; Hadrian's Wall; excavation

Chapter.  9575 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Greek and Roman Archaeology

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