Bective excavations Blog

Medieval Floor Tiles from the Bective Abbey Excavations 2009-2011 by Kieran Campbell
July 11, 2012, 7:15 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Medieval Floor Tiles from the Bective Abbey Excavations 2009-2011

An Interim Report

In their corpus of Irish medieval tiles, Eames and Fanning list eight designs then known from Bective, three of the line-impressed type (though one is an uncertain record) and five with relief decoration (1988, 72). Line-impressed tiles were produced from the early-14th century extending into the 15th century; relief tiles are generally dated to the late-15th and 16th centuries (ibid 57). No examples of two-colour tiles, datable to the 13th-14th centuries, have so far been recorded from Bective.

There are 127 fragments of medieval floor tile in the assemblage from the three seasons of excavation at Bective Abbey in 2009 (15 fragments), 2010 (33 fragments) and 2011 (79 fragments). An additional crude tile found in 2009 is possibly from the structure of a kiln. Three natural stones and two amorphous pieces of fired clay were discounted.

The tile fragments range in size from small unglazed and undecorated chips to three tiles which are almost complete, each missing just one corner. Fourteen designs have been recognised, six line-impressed and eight relief, of which only four, all relief, concur with Eames and Fanning’s list. There are two plain tiles made in the same fabric as the line-impressed tiles.

Follow this link to view the full report



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