Showing posts from March, 2015

Sat, (Apr. 4) the Archaeology of Mediaeval London 10.45 MoorgateTube

Newgate I have been ploughing my way through a small mountain of books. My main worry is that I repeat the Saxon London Walk, and don't have enough time to do justice to the Medieval. Sat, (Apr. 4)     I'm doing the Archaeology of Mediaeval London     10.45 Moorgate Tube

25 maps that explain the English language - Vox

Very useful set of maps explaining the english language. 25 maps that explain the English language - Vox

Are Jack the Ripper tours blighting London? - Telegraph

This was part of the plot of  a book I was writing - the idea is now ripped apart! Are Jack the Ripper tours blighting London? - Telegraph

Old Views of London - John Thomas Smith’s Ancient Topography

This is a collection of some of the most famous pictures of timber framed pictures of Old London John Thomas Smith’s Ancient Topography | Spitalfields Life

London's Roman City Wall

This is a google view map of the City of London and pins mark areas where the Wall survives.  It also contains links to articles on the archaeology. London's Roman City Wall :

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&

10 Rules for Students and Teachers Popularized by John Cage | Open Culture

Here are 10 rules for students and teachers to break! 10 Rules for Students and Teachers Popularized by John Cage | Open Culture

Bedlam graveyard Excavation - Crossrail Project

Some good videos here of the excavations.  For once, they are providing public access to the excavation. This has happened so very rarely during the last 50 years of intensive excavation. Such a pity Crossrail Project

▶ Fleet Valley Project (1989) "Life's Rich Tapestry" - YouTube

 !989 Film of excavations near Blackfriars.  David Bellamy narrates a story of the archaeological process, which is the films strong point. The findings themselves are not that spectacular but the process is described. ▶ Fleet Valley Project (1989) "Life's Rich Tapestry" - YouTube

The dreams of Charles Rennie Mackintosh

Here is an article about an exhibition about Mackintosh.  It includes a couple of short videos. BBC News - The dreams of Charles Rennie Mackintosh

Stonehenge is all in the air

Julian Spalding, who is a well respected ex-museum curator has suggested that Stonehenge supported a giant platform.  There is no evidence for this but he claims that ancient worship was mostly above ground - pyramids, zygurats etc. So, a platform above stonehenge makes sense, he believes. Circular thinking: Stonehenge's origin is subject of new theory | Science | The Guardian

Should museums ban selfie-sticks?

 I think Museums should ban inappropriate use of selfsticks, but no need to ban them altogether. Its just snobbery.  People from Asia have a complete different attitude to them and have embraced them as a useful tool. Admit it - we have all been in a situation when you have to ask a passing stranger to take a picture for you and your group/partner/family.   So we have ALL been in a position where a selfie stick would have been useful. BBC News - Should museums ban selfie-sticks?

Bermondsey Industries - the Pure Finder

PURE FINDER I am an Old Pure Finder, yes pure is the word What I find, me and my kind, you might find absurd I searches out what lurchers left, it’s a strange kind of job Picking up a job or two, to pick up just two bob. I am an Old Pure Finder, when folks say “How d’ya do?” Says I, “Well, I do doodoo and do do well don’t you?” I do doodoo so well, when the doodoo I do sell, But could do doodoo better if the doodoo didn’t smell. I am an Old Pure Finder, and often privvy to Evacuation information, where the dung is new. As canine clay collector I tries to do my bit At the places with the faeces and the spots where doggies hit. I am an Old Pure Finder, a retriever of the mess And not the kind of job to do, unless done to ex-cess Riches come from bitches, as I work dern hard Accruing Basset assets, whilst praying to St Bernard I am an Old Pure Finder and Miss Brown down our street Smiles, beguilingly and looks at me so sweet. She knows what I wants, as she walks around And lets her

Bronze Age Migration

This is a report on evidence that suggests a mass migration of peoples from the Steppes into Central Europe in about 4500 BC.  "And it's a massive event—at least three quarters of the population got replaced by people who are never in that part of continental Europe before." Some European Languages Came by Steppe | Richard Dawkins Foundation

Bermondsey - Cholera in the Age of Victoria

Unbelievable poverty. Victorian London - Districts - Areas - Bermondsey

1930s Slum Clearance in Hackney, London

Hackney Today revealed fascinating archive footage of Slum Clearance in 1930's Hackney. http://www Heavy handed officials come to Banister Road to measure up, assess and ultimately to condemn and demolish working class housing in Hackney. The officious film shows glimpses of everyday life for poor Londoners, as the camera lens looks down its long nose at their lives.  The worst scenes are of the insect infestations and the damp wall paper, but otherwise the Londoners look cheerful, with the kids enjoying the outdoor life unsupervised. What is notable is how messy the outhouses, and yards are - full of carts, plants and detritus.  But they provide a little bit of customisable space.  The rows of Victorian houses are replaced by large blocks of flat, which however neat they look, you feel the Londoners are crammed into them, and they look unresponsive to the idiosyncratic needs of the Londoner

Decline and Fall of Roman London Walk

London Bridge, 5th Century AD My next walk is Decline & Fall - The Archaeology of Late Roman & Dark Age London St. Paul'sTube exit 2 on Saturday Mar. 7 2015 10.45am I am going to talk about the history of the discovery of what happened (may have happened) in the so-called Dark Ages.  We used to know what happened, but the lack of evidence to back up the documentary history led to a situation where anyone's guess was as good as anyone elses.  Now, the evidence is beginning to accumulate but  it still leaves a lot of room for imaginative story-telling. To my mind the story of the story is better than the story itself.

Great Lecture at the Old Operating Theatre Museum


Words in the Landscape

 I am beginning to wonder what dialect tells us about the Anglo-Saxon invasion, and this rather wonderful article about dialect words about the landscape struck a chime.. For example, Rionnach maoim means “the shadows cast on the moorland by clouds moving across the sky on a bright and windy day”; èit refers to “the practice of placing quartz stones in streams so that they sparkle in moonlight and thereby attract salmon to them in the late summer and autumn”, teine biorach is “the flame or will-o’-the-wisp that runs on top of heather when the moor burns during the summer”.'The Shaw The word-hoard: Robert Macfarlane on rewilding our language of landscape | Books | The Guardian

Recreating the Night Watch - Onze helden zijn terug! - YouTube

This is a video of a PR excercice to get people in a shopping mall to come to see the  original Rembrandt Here is the painting Here is the video Onze helden zijn terug! - YouTube