25
Jun
19

where next?

 

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After a week’s work, the 10x10m trench is down to about 30cm.

Sterile ground – that is, the end of the archaeological materials – has been reached in some parts of the trench. West Africanists, I know, right! Many of us are more used to reaching sterile at 3m rather than 0.3m!

IMG_20190624_064214180

With hermit crab tracks.

The question therefore now is where to excavate next? Shiura and I have been noticing potential locations.

In summer 1974 John Carswell observed that the streets of Malé were surfaced with finely packed coral sand studded with pottery sherds; “each monsoon shower revealed a new crop”. Same here… Main street in Kinolhas:

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About this blog

This blog has been set up to chart the activities and research findings of two projects led by Anne Haour, an archaeologist from the Sainsbury Research Unit at the University of East Anglia, United Kingdom.

The first project, called Crossroads, brings together a team of archaeologists, historians and anthropologists studying the Niger Valley where it borders Niger and Bénin (West Africa). We are hoping to shed more light on the people that inhabited the area in the past 1500 years and to understand how population movements and craft techniques shaped the area's past.

The second project, called Cowries, examines the money cowrie, a shell which served as currency, ritual object and ornament across the world for millennia, and in medieval times most especially in the Maldive Islands of the Indian Ocean and the Sahelian regions of West Africa. We hope to understand how this shell was sourced and used in those two areas.

These investigations are funded by the European Research Council as part of the Starting Independent Researcher Programme (Seventh Framework Programme – FP7) and by the Leverhulme Trust as a Research Project Grant. The opinions posted here are however Anne Haour's own!

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