Current Archaeology 239 February 2010

9 Feb 2010

Several items are worth repeating to the wider world. The Clovis culture people are blamed for the extinction of mammoths in North America according to the overkill hypothesis. Research has now shown the mammoth population fell sharply towards the end of the Ice Age and before the Clovis people - though mammoths, in smaller numbers, did continue to exist until the Younger Dryas Event.

Lanton quarry near Yeavering Bell, the natural hill that looks like a pyramid in Northumberland, has been the subject of some quick archaeological groundwork before the big machinery moves in. They have unearthed occupation evidence going back to the Early Neolithic - with reoccupation in the Bronze and Iron ages, and an interesting early Anglo Saxon era village (see www.archaeologicalresearchservices.com/projects/lantonquarry.htm ). Grubenhauser and some of the timber buildings are similar to nearby Saxon period examples but there were also circular buildings in the native British tradition and C14 dated 550AD.

An article on County Durham archaeology in the Roman period shows the region (immediately south of Hadrian's Wall) was agricultural and had villa estates as well as isolated farms. A series of forts, industrial areas, and roadside markets show that northern Britain was fully integrated into Roman culture, and of course some of this was due to providing supplies for the Roman army and similar items along the major road systems in the north.