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  • Blog Archives - Seandálaíocht - Irish for Archaeology
    and developer funded archaeology It and other projects like it have already begun based on the abundance of sites excavated in the last two decades to transform the way we understand periods like the Iron Age and Early Medieval period in Ireland Hopefully the minuscule amount of money required to undertake more such research isn t withdrawn by the government in the coming years thus squandering the massive amount of money sweat and back problems put into generating so much of the grey literature that makes this kind of research possible 4 Comments Seandalaiocht is a Finalist for the Irish Blog Awards 28 02 2011 6 Comments I am genuinely humbled to find that the blog has been shortlisted for the Irish Blog Awards 2011 in the Education Science category This is a surprise on a number of fronts but mainly because I still find it hard to believe people actually read my ramblings never mind value them in some small way The blog is now listed alongside some seriously impressive blogs that I have long admired williamoconnor wordpress com nellatnci wordpress com anseo a mhuinteoir blogspot com swingingstrings blogspot com sccenglish ie frogblog ie sciencegallery com blog liveatthewitchtrials blogspot com carloweducatetogether ie There s no voting involved in the final so I can t organise a campaign or anything but I ll be sure to let you know if the blog wins 6 Comments Prof Steven Mithen Podcast on the Neolithic in the Near East 14 02 2011 1 Comment Prof Steven Mithen gave a seminar recently at the Humanities Institute of Ireland in UCD It was entitled Communal and monumental architecture at the origin of the Neolithic in the Near East new evidence from Wadi Faynan Southern Jordan The lecture is now online as a podcast and can be downloaded from iTunes or listened to on the HII website 1 Comment Archaeology on the box tonight 07 02 2011 2 Comments We will all be treated tonight 7pm RTE 1 to an entire Gasp programme on Irish archaeology from our beloved national broadcaster The delicious archaeological nugget will come in the form of an episode of Nationwide that will include a piece on the redevelopment of the National Heritage Park in Ferrycarrig who just launched a Facebook page a place that appears to be experiencing a welcome renaissance and the location of my experimental smelt last year There will also be a piece detailing the fascinating results of analysis of the archaeological excavations at the infamous Lismullin site excavated as part of the M3 motorway scheme by the ever interesting Frank Prendergast Finally we ll see an experimental reconstruction of a fulacht fiadh by a UCC post grad Alan Hawkes who explores their use as both cooking pits and sweathouses in the light of recent evidence from excavations I ve always liked the thought of using them as breweries myself 2 Comments Annagassan Longphort lecture and Website Launch and a few preview pics 02 02 2011 1 Comment

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  • Blog Archives - Seandálaíocht - Irish for Archaeology
    walls and other such nerdy things If you like me are one of those people who has literally jumped in excitement at just the thought of finding small stones then you may just be what Time Team are looking for You can find all the details by clicking on Read More below visiting the Past Preservers website and putting your details into their Talent Database If you do get the job and you re Irish adopted Irish do us a favour and come back sometime to sort out our native broadcasters coverage of Ireland s brilliant archaeology Read More 3 Comments We seem to have mislaid some High Crosses 27 01 2011 The National Museum of Ireland is looking for help to track down sister replicas of the life size casts of Irish High Crosses currently on display in Collin s Barracks Dublin The plaster casts were created a century ago and shipped off around the world to showcase Irish culture and heritage The Museum has launched a Facebook campaign to locate the current whereabouts of the crosses starting with a copy of the Monasterboice High Cross sent to Sydney in 1904 Get in touch with the Museum through Facebook or Twitter if you can help them find any of the missing crosses UPDATE More info is now up on the Museum website Kildare Archaeology Society Research Grants 20 01 2011 Money for archaeological or historical research or lets be honest for pretty much anything is scarce on the ground these days which is why news of the availability of this small but useful grant available from the Kildare Archaeological Society is very welcome The details are embedded above or you can download the poster What A site about Irish archaeology conferences links opinions news information and the internet Seandalaiocht

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  • Blog Archives - Seandálaíocht - Irish for Archaeology
    of the instruments Particularly the giant Celtic Loughnashade trumpet I would highly recommend having a look at the full video that inspired this post Its embedded after the break or you can go straight to YouTube Read More Lego Archaeology Kinda 10 12 2010 1 Comment Not strictly Irish or archaeology but involving a childish love of Lego this has to be one of the coolest videos I ve come across on YouTube in some time Indulge me Read More 1 Comment Transition Year Archaeology 2011 01 12 2010 Its that time of year again and UCD are looking to recruit another cohort of young impressionable scholars with their heads in the past Applications are now open for the UCD School of Archaeology Transition Year Programme Applicants can find more info after the break or on the School s website Or you can download the appropriate form here This is a great way to stick your toe in the archaeological water and see if you like it Might be an idea for readers of the blog to pass this on to future lovers of the past who might be interested If anyone knows of similar courses in other institutions please

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  • Blog Archives - Seandálaíocht - Irish for Archaeology
    statue of St Gobnet should be erected close to the location of a holy well and a circular stone structure known as St Gobnet s House or Kitchen and long supposed to be the foundations of a round tower During construction of the statue a crucible was found and it was decided that M J O Kelly from University College Cork excavator of Newgrange should be invited to carry out an archaeological excavation Phase 2 After O Kelly 1952 The excavation revealed extensive remains of post holes pits and drains with a first phase of un enclosed activity with a few possible rectangular post built structures the second phase saw the raising of the ground level and construction of a large circular stone structure St Gobnet s House with a central post hole A well was also dug in front of the entrance The second phase produced a large amount of slag pits and a hearth indicating extensive ironworking probably mainly smithing but possibly also smelting Artefacts discovered on the site indicate an Early Medieval date c 400 A D 1100 A D but no radiocarbon dates are available Elswhere on the site a mound called St Gobnet s Grave may be prehistoric and is associated with a number of Bullaun Stones artefacts I have suggested elsewhere may be related to ironworking This potential link with a deeper pagan past combined with the unusual evidence for ironworking on the site of a community of female ascetics has made me wonder more than once if St Gobnet may be connected with previous traditions of worship of the Celtic smith god Gobniu Close by St Gobnet s Grave is a graveyard with an intact protestant church and a ruined Medieval chapel which has seen some serious and worrying alterations since O Kelly s excavations including the addition of a PVC conservatory on one side and a number of gawdy lights attached directly to the walls of the Nave and chancel The site continues to this day as a place of pilgrimage with offerings still being left at St Gobnet s Grave and House A new tradition of rubbing crude cross shapes into stones on the site could be seen as vandalism but i prefer to look at it as a sign of a living site still important to the community and not just a handful of archaeologists It also serves as a reminder that traditions of practice at ancient religious sites need not always reach back into the distant past despite what we may like to imagine References Henry F 1952 The decorated stones at Ballyvourney Co Cork Journal of the Cork Historical and Archaeological Society 57 41 42 O Kelly M J 1952 St Gobnet s House Ballyvourney Co Cork Journal of the Cork Historical and Archaeological Society 57 18 40 Harris D C 1938 Saint Gobnet Abbess of Ballyvourney Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland 8 272 77 And the Runner Up is 10 11 2010 The

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  • Blog Archives - Seandálaíocht - Irish for Archaeology
    Europe The First 2000 Years 12 10 2010 The final report for the Iron and Change in Europe Conference which I blogged about previously has just been published on the ESF website It presents a preliminary picture of the state of knowledge of the iron industry in Europe from its first appearance to the end of the first millenium AD this is based on summary reports for individual countries presented by the various delegates to the conference including my one which I posted to the blog in May You can read the report below or download it here Irish Archaeology on Google Street View 05 10 2010 As pretty much anyone with an internet connection must have heard by now Google recently launched its Street View service on Google Maps in Ireland The coverage is pretty spectacular taking in pretty much every road in Ireland and of course as the guys in the Street View car cruised around casually invading everyone s privacy they also managed to record quite a few archaeology sites Newgrange County Meath The Rock of Cashel County Tipperary Round Tower Killala County mayo Rothe House Kilkenny County Kilkenny What A site about Irish archaeology conferences links

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  • Blog Archives - Seandálaíocht - Irish for Archaeology
    of viking Dublin and Woodstown in Co Wexford The site had been extensively surveyed prior to excavation but the discovery of a large fosse together with diagnostic finds including a lead weight bronze pins and nails associated with viking ships constitute firm evidence for the identification of the site as a ninth century viking settlement I ll be posting more information on the site including some pictures hopefully in the near future but for the time being you can have a look at the short report on the RTE news that went out this evening Update You can see some pictures of the excavation here Read More 6 Comments Mícheál Ó Cléirigh Institute Seminars and Conference 08 09 2010 The Mícheál Ó Cléirigh Institute in UCD has announced its line up of seminars and conference for the coming semester Some of the archaeology talks sound particularly interesting including one on the Staffordshire Hoard and an update on recent work at the Irish royal sites of Cruachain and Uisneach I should also highlight a talk by a colleague of mine in UCD School of Archaeology Madeline Parker Shannon who s research takes a very interesting perspective on early modern cooking These sorts of lectures are generally attended by a small clique of students and academics but they are open to all and I d recommend anyone with an interest and time off work in any of the topics to go see a hopefully fascinating talk for free You don t have to ask questions unless you want to All of the talks have been added to the events calendar which you can view online or add to your own electronic calendar Share Tweet Papyrus Fragments found in Ancient Irish Bog Book 07 09 2010 1 Comment The conserved Faddan More Psalter In the sumer of 2006 a spectacular find in a bog in Co Tipperary Ireland caused a sensation Against all odds an eight century vellum manuscript was found almost intact by the driver of a mechanical digger Mr Eddie Fogarty The book had been lost or perhaps placed in the bog over a millennia ago and represented the first book of this age ever to be found preserved in such a context anywhere in the world Since the discovery the book now named the Faddan More Psalter has been conserved by the National Museum of Ireland and will go on display in the museum in 2011 While the book is on its own one of the most spectacular archaeological discoveries in Europe in the last decade it held one more spectacular secret In the final stages of its conservation fragments of papyrus a type of reed paper probably originating in Egypt were found in its leather binding Speculation about the connections between early Irish traditions of ascetic monasticism and those of the Coptic Church in Egypt has been around for many years and this discovery adds solid evidence for contact between the two regions in the eight century The psalter

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  • Blog Archives - Seandálaíocht - Irish for Archaeology
    lakeland crannógs they were the defended farmsteads of the native Irish Celts These settlements were centres of mixed farming economy and were largely self sufficient in the production of tools textiles and household goods About 35 000 ring fort sites are currently identifiable in the Irish landscape they are clearly marked on Ordnance Survey 6 maps http www irishtimes com newspaper ireland 2010 0810 1224276470654 html Lios na gCon Website Ringforts were built and occupied between c 400 AD and c 1200 AD in the Early Christian and Viking periods Like stone cashels and some lake land crannogs they were the defended farmsteads of the native Irish Celts These settlements were centres of mixed farming economy and were largely self sufficient in the production of tools textiles and household goods About 35 000 ringfort sites are identifiable in the Irish landscape today they are clearly marked on Ordnance Survey 6 maps of which a small sample has been archeologically sic investigated http liosnagcon com ringfort index shtml The sad thing is this kind of lazy journalism takes away from the point of the article which is an important one about the apparent illegal destruction of archaeological monuments Thanks to Terry O Hagan a colleague of mine in UCD whose well honed plagiarism detector developed over long years of first year essay correction picked this up Share Read More 2 Comments A Few Recent Archaeology Job Offers 05 08 2010 Since a large amount of the search driven traffic to this site comes from people searching for archaeology jobs and coing across a post I put up long ago pointing to an entirely different site I figure I owe people some job adverts So click on Read More to see three new archaeological job opportunities in Ireland Yes folks though they

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  • Blog Archives - Seandálaíocht - Irish for Archaeology
    years last year s was packed out and had some really high quality talks the resulting publication will be published at this year s seminar This year s title is fairly ambiguous but is probably an attempt to tap in to the current recession zeitgeist I ll be attending and would recommend it to anyone with any interest in archaeology amateur or professional Having it on a Thursday might be considered restrictive for those with full time jobs but considering how few people have them nowadays particularly archaeologists I suppose it makes sense Click Read More for full programme and details on how to register its free Share Read More Graveyards as Public Amenities St James s Graveyard Dublin 21 07 2010 View Some Dublin Graveyards in a larger map A new blog has been launched inviting feedback on the future of St James s Graveyard Dublin 8 The graveyard dates back to a little after the Norman invasion of Ireland in the twelfth century but went out of use in the twentieth century The land is to be transferred to Dublin City Council and laudably they are consulting the wider public about how the space should be treated Wolfe Tone Square There are a number of old graveyards dotted around Dublin city which can easily be missed Two better known ones include the Huguenot Cemetery off St Stephen s Green and the old graveyard beside Donnybrook Garda Station These are little used spaces relatively inaccessible to the public but they do preserve a certain solitude and dignity which can sometimes be lost when graveyards fall out of use Wolf Tone Square formerly the graveyard of St Mary s church on the corner of Jervis Street and Mary Street is a case in point After the graveyard s decline in the twentieth century its gravestones were removed and piled rather forlornly against the wall at the south end where they remain today apart from a fe set into the ground Recent redevelopment of the graveyard as a public square has been less than successful A bland non interactive design combining with its use as a drinking spot to make it a non destination for Dubliners even during the day Gravestones piled at the end of the square Its difficult to know what to do with cemeteries when they go out of use modern sensibilities cringe at the thought of walking on graves although our ancestors had no such qualms often holding markets and fairs on what was often a very convenient open space I m not sure what should be done with St James s graveyard but i hope the solution is neither as bland as Wolfe Tone Square nor as inaccessible as the Huguenot Cemetery A blend of modern use with a respect for the past is usually the best approach Graveyards are always fascinating and often very tranquil places maybe preserving these two assets should be the main goal of the Council when planning for the future of

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