Rhynie, Aberdeenshire

Rhynie, Aberdeenshire
The Craw Stane with Tap o'Noth hillfort in the background (Photo courtesy of Cathy MacIver).

Monday, 1 July 2013

It's the Pits (in a good way)!

Another very busy day on site, with lots of visitors coming up to see us.  The Pictish café seems to be doing very well, too - I finally managed to sneak down to sample one of the infamous cinnamon buns (ok... two cinnamon buns...) at lunchtime.  I'm just hoping Debbie has a small Rhynie Man T-shirt left for me (although with all those cakes, maybe I should go up a size just in case!).

Today we've been really getting into the different features on site with all the archaeology students and a few of our most loyal volunteers excavating a range of pits, possible post-settings and ditch sections.  One of our most interesting features is Emma's pit - this pit was absolutely black with charcoal and burnt material.  Definitely not a problem to find dating evidence for this feature! We are not sure what it was used for.  Emma did find a little bit of slag, but it does not appear to be a dump from metalworking and it might even be burning done inside the pit itself.  Nearby, Rachel has been working on a rather odd feature; we thought it was going to be a hollow filled with modern material, but then underneath a perfect little post-hole appeared!

Emma's pit of charcoal!

Rachel working on her feature - dressed for Scottish summer.

Our volunteers in the 'trowel line' made great progress, too.  We've now cleaned most of the site and we've even been able to go back over some areas of the small enclosure to refresh our features and see if we can find any more.  There was a suggestion that we had a line of post-holes just inside the ditch, so we've been trying to see if they are 'real'.  We (well, Fred) also found a sherd of what looks like a piece of the mid-section of a very fine glass vessel.  The glass is so fine and paper thin that we have hopes it might date to the Pictish period - we'll ask our finds expert Ewan for advice tomorrow! This adds to our growing list of interesting finds that we can't quite date!  A few days ago another volunteer, Jamie, found a delicate copper alloy buckle.
Copper Alloy buckle found during cleaning.
We can't believe it is our second week already - time flies. Now to check the weather and hope for some gentle rain overnight and a little less breeze tomorrow.  Gordon needs to do a bit of a rain dance for Mr Munch I think.

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