High Lights FOR the past generation the Palaeolithic has been the neglected period of British archaeology. The advent of radiocarbon dating brought tremendous excitement to prehistory as all over the world archaeologists suddenly found they could provide dates to build up the framework of man's past over the last ten thousand years. Beyond that however dates were replaced by guesses and thus the Palaeolithic languished. Recently however new dating methods have begun to give the Palaeolithic some of the excitement that has been enjoyed by more recent prehistory.
In this issue we present one of the most dramatic of the reevaluations, that of High Lodge, Mildenhall. This is one of the grand mystery sites of the British palaeolithic, which has produced enigmatic flaked tools which were often thought to be 'late'. However the recent investigations suggest that the stratigraphy is topsy-turvey, and that the whole site had been pushed by a glacier, so that the flint tools are earlier than the glacial till beneath them. This means that the Mildenhall flaked tools are among the earliest flint tools found in Britain - half a million years old.
One of the greatest archaeological sites of all is that of the Tomb of Christ, in Jerusalem. Originally excavated by the Emperor Constantine, it has been many times rebuilt, but now it is in danger of collapse following the earthquake of 1927. Martin Biddle has been carrying out a photogrammetric survey of the existing building, to see how much of the earlier building may survive underneath.
Our interview is with John Collis, the newly appointed Professor of Archaeology at Sheffield. In his famous sandals and pullovers, John is a familiar figure in British archaeology, and here he recalls his youthful digging in Winchester - he was already directing his own excavations by the age of 17 - and then his work at Owslebury, Exeter and more recently in France.
Finally, one of the seminal lectures for the 1990s was that given by Martin Biddle to the Council for Independent Archaeology at Dorchester. Here he asked the question "Where have all the volunteers gone? "Sir Mortimer Wheeler was one of the first to use volunteers, and in the 1960s and 70s many major excavations were carried out with volunteers. How can we bring them back into archaeology?
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