Bective excavations Blog

Day 12 – Saintonge Dates Bank!
July 20, 2010, 9:46 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

For the last week we have been excavating a ditch and bank at the western end of the long cutting 3. It was believed to be the boundary of a medieval garden or orchard belonging to Bective Abbey. The ditch is producing quantities of animal bone, local and english pottery (the latter in the upper fill). Today Helen made a great discovery when she was working with Stephanie on the bank material. A large sherd of Saintonge ware was found which dates the construction of this bank to the late  thirteenth century. This is roughly the same date as the earliest remains of the abbey at Bective. After lunch, geologist Stephen Mandal gave a presentation on the geology of the area and led tours to the abbey to examine the stone. The stone at the Abbey consists mainly of local limestone. The origins of the decorative sandstone have yet to be established.

The environmental lab continued the processing of samples. They recovered a large quantity of minute fishbones by sieving the ‘heavy fraction’ (the material left behind in the flotation process) through a 5mm screen and then again through a 1mm screen. Clare has been entering site information on a database especially designed by Gianmarco. The men from the OPW were out in force today working on laying out the carpark. Distinguished visitors included the entire O Gibne family and St Patrick’s graduate Una O’Brien. It was a glorious day!

Clare enters feature and finds data online and on site.

Shaina and Jessi wet-sieving for minute fish and bird bones.

Geologist Stephen Mandal explains the local geology.

The team enjoy the talk on the geology of Bective Abbey.

The O Gibne family from Donore pay a visit to the site.


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