Rhynie, Aberdeenshire

Rhynie, Aberdeenshire
The Craw Stane with Tap o'Noth hillfort in the background (Photo courtesy of Cathy MacIver).

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Another fine day.. or should that be FIND day...

The investigations into the outer ditch are exceeding our expectations. Our main research questions focusing on this feature this year are to look for more information on the different types of activities occurring on site during the 5-6th century AD and to establish more definitively whether there is a recut (a reworking) of the outer ditch.

We have not dug down deep enough yet to answer the second objective, but we are certainly able to already shed more light on what went on at the Craw Stane complex. 

They drank!
Today both another sherd of a glass drinking vessel and fragments, including a handle, of Late Roman Amphora emerged from the ditch fill.

Sherd of early medieval glass from Rhynie.

They melted stuff!
We have over 50 sherds of crucibles now and of many different types. We even have evidence now of firing enamel for decoration of pins and brooches. So far this year we have two droplets of copper alloy. 

They made lots of pins!
We have many clay moulds - mostly showing the shafts of pins.  However, today two special bits of mould fragment turned up.  Both of these look like they could be a mould for a hand pin - a very distinctive and beautiful pin in use during the 5th-6th centuries mostly in Scotland and Ireland. 

Doesn't look like much, but a possible mould for a hand pin from Rhynie.

Whilst we knew some of this before from our earlier excavations, the range and quantity of metalworking material is something we have not encountered here before. 

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