My next walk - the Archaeology of Medieval London

Pilgrims Leaving the Tabard
My next walk is going to be about the archaeology of Medieval London. My first question is going to be deciding on the definition of medieval.

I was brought up with the 1066 to 1485 definition - from the coronation of William the Conqueror to the accession of Henry VII.    But modern scholars like 500AD to 1500AD.  However some start as late at 600, while others prefer from the fall of the western empire in 476AD to the Fall of Eastern Empire - Byzantium in 1453. So basically from the fall of the Roman empire to the Renaissance - the middle ages.

I have just done a Saxon London walk so should probably keep my walk from 1066 onwards, although I am tempted to start from the restoration of London in the 9th Century - particularly as I did not do this very thoroughly previously.

The next problem is the 'archaeology'.   Documentary sources begin to be quite detailed in this period, and, to my mind, the archaeology, becomes less 'interesting'.  This is ofcourse the wrong word, the archaeology becomes more personal and more local.  To some extent the 'facts' depend on archaeology during the earlier periods, while from the medieval period, the documentary sources give us the 'facts' and archaeology provides the detail - the lives of people, their health, their nutrition, their fashion, their possessions. In some ways this is more suitable for a lecture than a walk. So finding the thread that holds it all together and staying true to the word Archaeology is going to be the problem.

Moorgate Tube Sat 4th April 10.45 


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