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Salon: Issue 421
26 February 2019

Next issue: 12 March

The Society of Antiquaries of London Online Newsletter (Salon) is a fortnightly digest of heritage news. It focuses on the activities of the Society and the contributions that the Society's Fellows make to public life. A copy of Salon’s editorial policy can be found on the Society’s website.

Please send news, comment and feedback for publication to the Editor, Mike Pitts, at Salon EditorSalon doesn't review books, but the Editor is pleased to receive details and cover images of new titles written by Fellows. Scholarly publications are reviewed in The Antiquaries Journal.

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Inside this issue

From the Desk of the General Secretary

Mary's Hand 


We would like to thank everyone who attended our Mary's Hand event on Friday 15th February. 

We had a wonderful turn out for our unique event celebrating Queen Mary I. The evening kicked off with an insightful lecture by Dr John Cooper FSA on Mary I, with a very fitting focus on her hands as symbols of her reign. This was a fascinating lecture and set the scene for the performance that followed.

Clare McCaldin of McCaldin Arts performed excerpts from the opera Mary's Hand. This performance enthralled those in attendance as Clare commanded the room, dressed in a replica of the dress worn by Mary I in our Hans Eworth portrait. The meeting room acted as the stage for this event, one which was in contrast to its usual use. The music, beautiful written by Martin Bussey with words by Di Sherlock, reverberated through the room and you could tell that the audience were mesmerised by Clare's wonderful performance.

Photo opportunities followed with our portrait seemingly come to life. This event was a team effort by both former and present staff and was deemed a huge success by those in attendance.   


Back to the beginning of the report

T.E. Lawrence Exhibition Update

The current display in the Library at Burlington House, of photographs taken by young T.E. Lawrence in France in 1907 and 1908, has attracted a number of visitors. The bottle of The Antiquary whisky which the organiser, Bill Woodburn, FSA, was offering to the first Fellow who could identify the ‘Mystery Castle’ in one of the photographs has, very appropriately, been won by Dr Bob Higham, FSA, (the founder of the Castle Studies Group). It was at Châlus, Haute-Vienne, where King Richard I was mortally wounded.  The Society’s collection has a photograph by Lawrence of the castle of Châlus-Chabrol, which is quite well known by visitors today.  What Bob pointed out was that there was a second castle there, whose tower he had photographed from the top of Châlus-Chabrol, when he was visiting it in 1981, but, there was no time on a family holiday to visit that second castle.  It is now clear that the tower that he had photographed was of the later-built castle of Châlus-Maulmont.  However, most of this tower collapsed in 1994, leaving today just the stump of the tower and some ruined walls.  Detailed searches of modern photographs and old postcards have revealed that the mystery castle in Lawrence’s photograph is certainly that of Châlus-Maulmont in 1908, taken from an unusual angle, but a reversed print of it is in the display (a feature of several of Lawrence’s photographs in the collection).  The corrected image is featured here. 

Library Study Session

On Tuesday 19th February, Dr David Rundle, FSA brought some students of Latin and Manuscript Studies, Rutherford  College to the Society for a palaeography session using the Society’s manuscripts.

Notable highlights included: MS 13, Horae written in France containing some beautiful miniatures, full borders with images of foliage and flowers and gold filigree; MS 60, the Black Book of Peterborough; and MS 154, the Winton Domesday.

If you are interested in teaching a study session using the Society’s collections, please contact the Library.

War Returns to Salisbury Plain

‘Battle erupts over Steven Spielberg plans to film WWI epic near Stonehenge,’ the Daily Mail headlined on 5 February. Sequences for 1917, a film directed by Sam Mendes, are to be shot on Salisbury Plain, employing around 500 people ‘including dozens of male extras’: but, reported the Mail, ‘conservationists [are] concerned [filming] will disturb archaeological sites’. Are they concerned? And if so, should we be?
Mendes wrote the script for what Spielberg has described as ‘this hugely daring and ambitious new movie’. Tom Holland (Spider-Man) is rumoured to be the lead actor, and production is due to start in late April for a US release in December.
Planit Consulting, on behalf of Ms E Pill, submitted planning applications for four locations last November and December. None of them is within the Stonehenge World Heritage Site, nor particularly close to Stonehenge. All are to the north, the closest is at Netheravon 4 miles to the north-west; others are at Tilshead (6 miles), West Chisenbury (9 miles) and Coulston (13 miles). There is more to the archaeology of Salisbury Plain than Stonehenge, however, and at three of the sites there could be significant remains that might be affected by the works. At Netheravon there will be storage, parking and construction within a standing barn (a ‘German tunnel’), and nothing to disturb the ground. The closest site where archaeological remains might be at threat is thus 6 miles from Stonehenge.
A ‘French farm’ is to be built near Chitterne Road, Tilshead. The applicant says ‘there will be no impact upon heritage assets as a result of this proposal,’ but John Baumber, writing as Chairman of the Wiltshire Archaeological Society’s Building & Monuments Committee and an Agent for the Council for British Archaeology, feels otherwise. In a letter to Wiltshire Council (which erroneously states the location is within the World Heritage Site), he notes the presence of nearby scheduled monuments and that diggers will be brought to the site, requiring prior archaeological survey. Why not spend the money on restoring an old farmstead in France, he adds? ‘We suggest’, wrote Historic England to the planning officer, ‘that you seek the views of your specialist conservation and archaeological advisers, as relevant.’
At Horton Barn, West Chisenbury (‘no impact upon heritage assets’) more substantial works are proposed, including 560m of trenching (right; ‘the digging of trenches’, says the applicant, ‘… will be temporary in nature’). Historic England ‘strongly recommend[ed]’ that the planning officer ‘seek the advice of your colleagues in the Wiltshire Archaeology Team.’ The location is close to two significant Bronze Age/Iron Age sites, Casterley Camp (see air photo below) and East Chisenbury midden.

No one other than the Planning Department commented on archaeology at Stokehill Farm, Coulston, where, says the applicant, ‘the digging of trenches and use of the site will be temporary in nature. Accordingly, there will be no impact upon heritage assets’. As at West Chisenbury, however, there will be long trenches excavated to around 1.2m deep.
Martin Brown FSA, Assistant County Archaeologist, commented on the above three applications, having consulted with Richard Osgood FSA, Senior Archaeologist at Defence Infrastructure Organisation. They both recommended that planning decisions be deferred until geophysical surveys had been conducted at the sites, Brown calling for archaeological assessments that considered the non-designated heritage as well as known and protected sites. On 6 February Brown wrote that Wessex Archaeology had completed a geophysical survey at Coulston, revealing ‘some, limited archaeological potential that should be addressed… It is clear that the proposed creation of the trench system film set has potential to have adverse impact on the historic environment.’ A programme of archaeological investigation during site works needs to be approved. Surveys have also been done at the other two sites.
So should we be concerned?

While it is clear the applicant seems to have fundamentally misunderstood the nature of archaeological remains (not everything of value constitutes a standing monument), and thus had not properly addressed heritage matters, it is equally apparent that the planning system has successfully picked this up and introduced appropriate mitigation. The geophysical surveys have not been published, so we do not know what has been found; there may well be significant remains, and their investigation (at the applicant's expense) would be of public benefit.
Protecting heritage should not interfere with the filming of 1917. And the importance of the National Planning Policy Framework, which sets out approaches to heritage, is underlined – as is the significance of ensuring that guidelines are clear and comprehensive.

Diagrams Planit Consulting.

Digitisation Begins of Unique Air Photo Library

J K (Kenneth) St Joseph (1912–94), a natural sciences lecturer at Cambridge University, built on wartime aircraft research to develop a strong interest in aerial photography. From 1948 to retirement in 1980 he was Curator and then Director in Aerial Photography at the university, collecting the photos of others and flying himself to accumulate an exceptional archive of immense archaeological and historical value.
His archaeological discoveries were promoted by Glyn Daniel FSA, who put a photo and 500 words of text in every issue of Antiquity, after St Joseph had complained of the difficulties he faced in getting them published. One imagines he would be thrilled with the latest project from the Cambridge Digital Library, Landscape Histories from the Air. The University’s Collection of Aerial Photographs (CUCAP), writes Tom Spencer, a Professor in the Department of Geography, ‘represents a unique, long and proud tradition of aerial survey and interpretation in the British Isles and Europe, started by the pioneering Roman archaeologist J K St Joseph. Much of the imagery is remarkable, of great technical interest (eg early colour aerial photography), of high academic value, including as it does records of coastal change, discoveries of archaeological sites and the pre-and post-industrial landscapes of Britain.’ The library would like to digitise the entire collection (497,079 aerial images in black and white and colour prints, and slides), and has started with some 1,500 high resolution zooming images, annotated with details of the subjects.
In that sample there are many views of towns and ports (Sunderland in 1982, top left); Cambridge is well covered as it expands with new buildings; and there are many archaeological landscapes, including some excavations in progress. The Roman town of Aldborough, North Yorkshire, was photographed in November 1975 (top right). The view of Casterley Camp, Wiltshire, a hillfort earthwork with cropmarks of further remains inside, was taken in 1949 (below left). A colour view of cropmarks at Bassingbourn, Cambridge (below right), shows the wing of an RAF plane; it was taken in 1947.

The Palladian country pile (right) is Tottenham House on the edge of Savernake Forest in Wiltshire. In 1949, when the photo was taken, it was Hawtreys prep school for boys. The school closed under a cloud in 1994, when Lord Cardigan, not only a former pupil but also the landlord, described the atmosphere as ‘positively malodorous’; the headmaster had done a deal to merge with another school, for which he was said to have been paid a large consultancy fee, and staff and parents staged a protest. Worse was to come, when in 2013 the Tatler reported stories of abuse at the school. Under its private owners the house has not fared well, vacant since 2005, the focus of legal disputes and a failed commercial project, and currently under a proposal to restore it for private residential use, and add roads, a lake, a helicopter pad and 38 new buildings to the estate.
‘When you want to look up somewhere you go to Google Earth’, Martin Millett FSA told the Guardian (22 February), ‘and you can see what the landscape is like now. What I want people to do is to be able to explore what the landscape looked like in the last 50 or 60 years and see how your home and territory has changed.’
‘You can see the whole of history through the photos,’ he added. ‘It’s like medieval manuscripts where people have written on it and it’s been partly erased and you get layer and layer of writing – that’s what the landscape is like.’
‘This is an internationally important photographic collection’, said Robert Bewley FSA, ‘that is now available to anyone with access to the internet.’

On The Origin Of Species Manuscript Page at Risk of Export

Michael Ellis, Minister for Arts, Heritage and Tourism, has placed a temporary export bar on three small Charles Darwin manuscripts. The licence application will be deferred until 7 May 2019, with a possible extension until 7 September 2019, to allow buyers the chance to keep the papers in the UK. They are separately valued at £490,000, £200,000 and £137,500 (all plus VAT).
Last July Sotheby’s London sold a piece of old scrap paper with an unusually clear provenance, namely through the family from Charles Darwin. Pencilled geometry notes by Darwin’s son, George, were made on the back of a late draft of text for the end of chapter 8 of On the Origin of Species (above). It concludes a discussion of the nature of species, which Darwin writes have no ‘fundamental difference’ from varieties bred by people, with the profound implication that species are not immutable. Estimated at £120–180,000 it sold for £490,000.
A smaller scrap for the Origin sold for £274,000 (estimate £70–100,000 – can any Fellow explain the accession-like pencilled DAR.185:141 pencilled in one corner?); two pieces with passages for The Expression of the Emotions of Man and Animals went for £200,000 (estimate £40­–60,000, DAR.185:143) and £137,500 (£25–30,000, DAR.185:144) respectively; and a page of notes about animal traps was not sold. Other Darwiniana included a first edition of the Origin sold for £212,500 (estimate £60–80,000). A good day for Sotheby’s – sale prices include their fees – and the estate of the late Mrs A P Keynes.
The export bars apply to the larger Origin notes and the two Expressions. In a statement, reviewing Committee member Peter Barber FSA says, ‘Handwritten drafts of Charles Darwin’s books are of the greatest rarity. The few surviving sheets, touched by and written on by him, with evidence of pauses for contemplation, or spurts reflecting the rapid flow of thought, bring one closer to the man and his process of creation than perhaps anything else. The fragments under threat of export are particularly important. They show how Darwin revised his texts, pinning successive revisions onto sheets containing an earlier draft.’
The Expression fragments, he adds, ‘are perhaps even more important. Though less well-known than On the Origin of the Species this book, among the earliest works on behavioural psychology, greatly influenced Sigmund Freud. One of these fragments, for instance contains the observation that “Everyone protects himself when falling to the ground by extending his arms”. The nation has the chance to save revealing and intimate fragments of two works which, directly or indirectly, have shaped and continue to shape the modern world.’

A Word to Our Sponsor

With a dramatic protest at the British Museum, a controversy at the National Portrait Gallery and two organisations announcing their largest single gifts, the issues of patronage and sponsorship in the arts and heritage have been in the news.
In their largest demonstration to date, on 16 February BP or not BP? crowded the BM’s Great Court in a typically good-humoured show of chanting and banners, objecting to BP’s sponsorship of the museum’s popular I Am Ashurbanipal: King of the World, King of Assyria – mounted in the new gallery sponsored by the Sainsbury family – and to BP’s colonial misdeeds in general. The BM countered BP or not BP?’s claim to have mounted the largest ever protest at the site by pointing to a Chartist demonstration in the neighbouring streets in 1848. More than 250 museum staff, writes David Wilson FSA in The British Museum: A History, were co-opted as special constables and Anthony Panizzi, the Italian-born director, declared that ‘England expects every man this day will do his duty!’ It proved to be a bit of an anti-climax, as everyman cleared all the proffered cold beef and beer, and a keeper bemoaned the ban on smoking in the museum which meant there were no free cigars. BP or not BP?’s claim seems safe.
BP’s generosity has been long outpaced by the Sackler family, whose name permanently graces many museums and galleries. Principally through the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Foundation, the Dr Mortimer and Theresa Sackler Foundation and the Sackler Trust, the family has donated huge sums of money around the world to the causes of education, research and conservation in the fields of art, science and medicine. I listed many of the UK beneficiaries when Raymond died in 2017 (Salon 391); they include the British Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Royal Academy, the National Portrait Gallery, Tate, Serpentine Galleries, Kew Gardens, the Courtauld Institute, the Museum of London, the Ashmolean Museum and Cambridge University, among others in the UK.

The Sacklers owned Purdue Pharma, whose most successful product was OxyContin, a slow-release form of morphine. The drug and the way it was marketed are accused of being one of the key drivers of a US ‘opioid epidemic’ to which prescription pills make a significant contribution (32% of 47,600 of deaths in 2017, says the Economist). Amid numerous law suits (and differences between younger family members), Nan Goldin, an American photographer recovering from opioid addiction, has been taking her own actions, including a protest at the Metropolitan Museum of Art last year calling for museums to refuse Sackler gifts. It was perhaps inevitable that Goldin and the National Portrait Gallery, which announced a major refurbishment in January, should fall out over a planned retrospective of her work, as the gallery considers a £1 million gift offered by the Sackler Trust in 2016. Take the money, says Goldin, and lose the show.
Charles Saumarez Smith FSA, a former director of the NPG, discussed the issues on the Today Programme (18 February, around 2 hours 46 minutes in). ‘It used to be relatively straightforward,’ he said, but ‘it’s become more of a minefield.’ The old rule was that it was not for arts institutions to judge charities: ‘You looked to the good [to which] the money was being put, rather than the bad by which the money might have been made.’ But that is changing, and ‘once you start asking questions… it opens a can of worms.’
Universities were the first to set up ethics committees, following controversies at Oxford. Such due diligence, said Saumarez Smith, has sensibly now entered the arts world. ‘My view,’ he said, acknowledging that the decision was for NPG Trustees, ‘is that it almost certainly would be impossible for them both to accept a gift from the Mortimer and Theresa Sackler Foundation for their building project… and at the same time to do a Nan Goldin exhibition. That would be a form of suicide.’ Dependent on philanthropy, he added, the gallery was more likely to drop the exhibition.

The Rausing family made their money from a less innocuous product (though one that could be said to have contributed to a culture of packaging waste), the Tetra Pak drinks box. On 18 February the Royal Academy of Arts announced a record donation of £10 million, which will go towards the £15 million cost of renovating its arts school (right), to be renamed the Julia and Hans Rausing campus. The next day English Heritage said it had received a £2.5 million donation from the same couple’s charity, towards the cost of a new footbridge at Tintagel Castle in Cornwall which will open this summer. This is, said English Heritage, the largest single private donation ever received by the charity.
'I rejoice', wrote Richard Morrison in the Times (22 February) that ‘this remarkable family have given so much to their adopted country. I wish there were more like them.’

My photo at top shows a smaller BP or not to BP? protest at the opening of the Ashurbanipal exhibition (now closed). Tintagel (below) by English Heritage.


Batting for Lincolnshire’s Heritage

Lincolnshire’s heritage has been in the news for the wrong reasons. Early in February Lincolnshire County Council, which last year cut its budget for heritage services by £500,000, said museums and heritage sites across the county needed to ‘offer more’, proposing changes which it claimed would save £750,000 a year. The Usher Gallery could host wedding receptions, and properties outside Lincoln could be returned to English Heritage. The council hopes to raise £2 to £4 million of external funding to help make the heritage service 'self-sufficient'.
Ahead of a public consultation, Carenza Lewis FSA and colleagues have completed a ‘robust, multi-vocally informed exploration’ of residents’ and visitors’ attitudes to heritage. The Our Lincolnshire project, completed in May 2016, was led by Matthew Cragoe and Lewis on behalf of the County Council. At its heart were four schemes: a detailed large-scale survey into attitudes to heritage; a digital web app (My Lincolnshire Collection) where people could choose favourites from 100 object images; four local performances (Performing Lincolnshire Heritage) made with members of the public; and a case-study of cricket.
A disconnect, writes Lewis, had been noted between Lincolnshire’s citizens and their heritage beyond the city of Lincoln, which was considered to be an issue for museums and heritage services under financial pressure. How could Lincolnshire people reunite with their rural heritage? What should be done to ensure effective presentation of heritage assets for future generations?
‘Our Lincolnshire’: Exploring Public Engagement with Heritage, by Carenza Lewis, Anna Scott, Anna Cruse, Raf Nicholson and Dominic Symonds (available online for free) marshals an impressive amount of data, presented in tables and charts. Ninety-two per cent of survey respondents described themselves as white British; the next three groups were also white, one of them being ‘white Gypsy or Irish traveller’: in the context of England and Wales, this is a region of low non-white population. People were most interested in Tudor to Victorian heritage, and least in prehistoric. In the previous year, about one in ten of all respondents (34% of those under 18) had taken part in metal detecting. When asked, ‘What would make you more likely to take part in heritage-related activities in Lincolnshire?’ the highest scoring option (55%) was ‘If I thought I’d be supporting heritage by taking part’ (‘Better retail facilities” came in last, at 4%). And so on.
At the most conservative estimate, conclude the authors, the project engaged 3,000 people, ‘and if all recorded engagements with the project were by different users the number would be in excess of 8,000’. Listeners to BBC Radio Lincolnshire and social media followers ‘would raise numbers considerably higher’. ‘Our Lincolnshire', they add, 'has demonstrated a need, aroused interest and shown how much can be achieved for heritage and people in Lincolnshire.’

Fellows (and Friends)

Frank Horlbeck FSA, art historian, died in January.
Ann Saunders FSA, historian, died in February.
Appreciations appear in Fellows Remembered below.
The section also contains a further notice on the late Sir Conrad Swan FSA.
Twenty new Fellows have been elected since the last Salon, on 14 and 21 February:
Clive Bridger-Kraus (Roman archaeology in Germany).
Michael Chisholm (rural Settlement and land use).
Anne Marie D’Arcy (medieval literature and the visual arts).
Xavier Dectot (medieval sculpture).
Emma Dwyer (19th–21st century urban built environment).
Barry Gaulton (early history of Canada).
Erin Griffey (visual and material culture at the Stuart court).
Nelleke Ijssennagger (early medieval to early modern cultural development).
Andrew Jamiesons (Near Eastern archaeology, Iron Age ceramics).
Rachael Kiddey (archaeology of the contemporary homeless and refugees).
Courtney Nimura (Celtic coins and Celtic art).
Hilary Orange (heritage of global industry, popular music and Cornish identity).
David Roberts (Roman Britain and Wiltshire, including Stonehenge).
Hannah Russ (archaeological fishbones and fishing).
Ian Scott (archaeology of metals and weapons).
Ruth Shaffrey (archaeology of worked stone).
Lisa Skogh (the Kunstkammer, collecting and the early modern consort).
Nicholas Thistlethwaite (19th-century organ building and design).
Rowena Willard-Wright (archaeological curation, cold war interiors).
William Zajac (historic environment in Wales).
For details see Ballot Results. Further details can be seen in the Ballot Archive (Fellows only).

Registration is open for the 2019 Festival of Archaeology (13–28 July). The Festival, coordinated by the Council for British Archaeology, has a website with guides and publicity materials to help event organisers, and a blog. The achievements of local, regional and national archaeologists, and volunteers who were inspired by archaeology, will be celebrated under the theme of Archaeology, Science and Technology. ‘This can be simple activities or events,’ says the CBA, ‘from working out how people built houses in the past to exploring the use of technology such as drones in discovering our archaeological heritage.’ The festival will be working with English Heritage, as part of the Kick the Dust, Shout Out Loud project and its Heritage Action Zones, Cadw, and the British Museum, and will include a cake competition. In the CBA’s 75th anniversary year, there will also be a ‘birthday’ event.

Heinrich Härke FSA (University of Reading) and Andrej B Belinskij (Ministry of Culture of the Stavropol Region) excavated a cemetery at Klin-Yar, near Kislovodsk – a key site for later prehistoric and early medieval archaeology in the North Caucasus – between 1994 and 1996. They found 17 Koban burials (Iron Age), nine Sarmatian tombs (Roman era), two transitional Sarmatian/Alanic and 24 Alanic catacombs (early medieval), along with two 'cenotaphs' and two associated 'horse skin' (head-and-hooves) deposits; previous work had unearthed an estimated 1,000 to 3,000 graves. The new excavations also produced settlement evidence of Koban date. Grave-goods show wide-ranging contacts, from Central Asia to Mesopotamia and Byzantium; in the Alanic period, a branch of the Silk Road led past the site. After years of research, Härke and Belinskij have edited a substantial report, Ritual, Society and Population at Klin-Yar (North Caucasus).
Paul Barnwell FSA has edited Places of Worship in Britain and Ireland 1350–1550, the fourth in a series which will ultimately extend to the 21st century. Taken on its own terms, says the blurb, a period often seen as one of decline had much innovation, vitality and creativeness, in worship as much as in architecture. The main focus was in collegiate churches, but parish buildings and worship continued to evolve, and established institutions, including cathedrals and many monastic houses, adapted to the new circumstances. The book emphasises the main types of institution, those of which there are good physical remains, and what was distinctive to the age; cathedrals, monasteries of some of the larger orders, colleges and parishes are discussed. Other contributors include Sarah Brown FSA, Nicola Coldstream FSA, Glyn Coppack FSA, Richard Fawcett FSA, Madeleine Gray FSA, Rachel Moss FSA, Cathy Oakes FSA and Richard Oram FSA.
The discovery of Richard III’s grave and the reinterment of the king’s remains came at a time when Leicester Cathedral was implementing a Master Plan to improve use of space both inside and outside the church. In 2013 van Heyningen and Haward Architects were asked to gear up their programme to include works that would accommodate the king’s new grave and an expected increase in visitors. The visitors came, and the cathedral and vHH have now been told they can build a significant new extension for educational rooms and exhibitions on the site of an old song school, part below ground and part rising against the building’s south side. The cathedral expects a further 30% increase in visitor numbers and £17m annual contribution to city. Historic England had been doubtful of the £11.3m plan’s value, but had not objected. There will presumably be archaeological excavation before works start.

The Public Archaeology of Death, edited by Howard Williams FSA, Benedict Wills-Eve and Jennifer Osborne, stems from the University of Chester’s first student archaeology conference, held in 2016, Dead Relevant? Mortuary Archaeology in Contemporary Society. Williams thought the conference addressed new issues, and invited students who had taken part to contribute to a book. It explores the public’s engagement with mortuary archaeology via media. Topics include display in museums and heritage sites; artist’s reconstructions; representation in video games; world war battlefields on TV and a historical drama series, Vikings; and the experiences of volunteers and visitors during the excavation of an early medieval cemetery.

A study of megaliths across Europe is ‘a real breakthrough,’ Kristian Kristiansen FSA told the New York Times (11 February). Schulz Paulsson, a colleague at Gothenburg University, has assembled and analysed 2,410 radiocarbon dates from megalithic and related sites to consider the history of the idea of using large stones in religious and ceremonial monuments, including large burial mounds (4500–2500 BC). A century-old model that explained how the idea originated in the Near East and spread through the Mediterranean and along the Atlantic coast, was replaced in the 1970s by a theory, backed by radiocarbon dates, of local developments. Now with many more dates and greater analytical precision, Paulsson argues the evidence supports a more focused origin and subsequent diffusion by sea voyaging. Megaliths first appear in north-west France, and spread along the Atlantic coasts and the Mediterranean in three phases. ‘The older generation of archaeologists were correct concerning a maritime diffusion of the megalithic concept,’ she says. ‘They were wrong regarding the region of origin and the direction of the megalithic diffusion.’ ‘An added bonus,’ says Kristiansen, is that ‘This matches the most recent genetic evidence … ancient DNA results show that people in Ireland and England came from Iberia.’
The Institute of Classical Architecture & Art, which has its HQ in New York and 15 chapters across the US, emerged to ‘carry the mantel of classicism’ as modernism gained popularity. James Stevens Curl FSA will be among those honoured in May at its annual dinner for the presentation of the Arthur Ross Awards for Excellence in the Classical Tradition. Stevens Curl, who will be awarded for History & Writing, is described as ‘a leading British architectural historian’ whose Oxford Dictionary of Architecture was ‘hailed as “the finest in existence”, deserving of the “highest praise”. His most recent book, Making Dystopia: The Strange Rise and Survival of Architectural Barbarism … is a passionate and deeply researched critique of why towns today look and are so unpleasant.’ Stevens Curl will be joined by another British winner, Julian Fellowes, ‘creator, sole writer, and executive producer of the worldwide hit series Downton Abbey.’ • Stevens Curl will give a public lecture at the Society’s rooms on 10 September, on Making Dystopia: The Strange Rise and Survival of Architectural Barbarism
Michael Shapland FSA has written Anglo-Saxon Towers of Lordship, the first full-length study of these exceptional buildings, says the blurb, many of which still stand incorporated into the fabric of Norman and later parish churches and castles. We now know that Anglo-Saxon lords were constructing free-standing towers at their residences across England in the 10th and 11th centuries. Initially they were timber and modest in scale. So-called ‘tower-nave' churches followed, with a tiny chapel located inside, which appear to have functioned as both buildings of elite worship and symbols of secular power and authority. The tower-nave form persisted into early Norman times, influencing a variety of high-status building types, including the keeps and gatehouses of the earliest stone castles.

The Castle Studies Trust has awarded five research grants, bringing their total awarded over six years to £100,000. £27,000 will be shared by Druminnor, Aberdeenshire; Wressle, East Yorkshire; Laughton en le Morthen, South Yorkshire; Hoghton Tower, Lancashire; and Shrewsbury Castle. ‘Shrewsbury Castle is an unusually well-preserved shire town motte-and-bailey that has never before been excavated,’ said Nigel Baker FSA in a press statement. ‘A geophysical survey in the Spring and an excavation in July will try and determine how the castle buildings were laid out inside the bailey and something of their history, and – perhaps – get a glimpse of the earliest Norman earthworks or even earlier, pre-Conquest, activity.’

The British Institute of Archaeology at Ankara has announced two new student scholarships in memory of the late David French, Director of the British Institute at Ankara from 1968–1994. The scholarships will offer grants of up to £1,000 each to support travel to Turkey to extend students’ knowledge and understanding of the country’s history, geography, culture and environment, and they will come with free accommodation at the BIAA. The deadline for applications is 30 April 2019. Details online. • The new BIAA David French library is now fully operational with all collections in place and a completed online search system. Details online.
Robert Tittler FSA, Professor of History Emeritus at Concordia University, Montreal, has edited Two Weather Dairies from Northern England, c. 1779-1807: The Journals of John Chipchase and Elihu Robinson. The first of these two late 18th-century Quaker diaries regarding weather and agriculture in northern England recently turned up in a Montreal library and has been completely unknown until now. Chipchase, schoolmaster of Stockton-upon-Tees, has much to say about weather and crops, but also meteor showers and the aurora borealis, lightning strikes, fatal diseases, fishing and fishkills, the homing instincts of cats, the life cycle of snails, fierce gales and consequent shipwrecks, and both the causes and local reactions to a near-famine of 1795. Robinson's remarkably meticulous records have been known previously only in manuscript form to a few specialists.

The Society’s Old St Paul’s Diptych by John Gipkyn (1616) will be among 80 works to feature in Architecture of London, an exhibition at the Guildhall Art Gallery (31 May–1 December 2019). John Schofield FSA and David Allen FSA will be among speakers in a talks series linked to the show.

Fellows Remembered

Frank Horlbeck FSA died on 14 January two weeks before his 95th birthday. He was a Lifetime Fellow of the Society, having been elected in May 1964. A Professor of Art History at University of Wisconsin, Madison from 1958 until retirement in 1995, he spent many summers in Europe, not least in England and Greece, where he photographed local architecture.
The Chazen Museum of Art recently held two exhibitions organised by students and Thomas Dale, Professor at the Department of Art History, which highlighted two of his passions: Holy Mountain: Icons from Mount Athos and Photographs by Frank Horlbeck (2017, photos at top) and What’s In A Jug? Art, Technology, Culture (2018), featuring a selection from his collection of Victorian Staffordshire pottery jugs. The jugs are part of his bequest to the Chazen (at his funeral his ashes were placed in one of them), and his large photographic collection includes what has been described as an ‘unparalleled archive of images of English parish churches’.
Frank Horlbeck was born in Whiting Indiana. He studied chemistry at the University of Chicago, where he later took an MA in Art History, moving to London to research his PhD on Decorative Painting in English Medieval Architecture at the Courtauld Institute of Art (1957).
‘He was a passionate teacher and photographer’, said Dale, ‘who taught countless students the introductory survey of Ancient and Medieval Art as well as more specialized courses on the art and architecture of the British Isles, Scandinavia and the Byzantine empire.’
The photo of Horlbeck with his jug collection is by Gene Phillips.


Ann Saunders FSA died on 13 February aged 88. She was elected a Fellow of the Society in May 1975.
Ann Saunders was a distinguished and prolific editor, and historian of costume and London topography. She edited Costume, the Costume Society’s journal published by the V&A, from its first issue in 1967 until 2008, adding four sets of conference papers, a exhibition catalogue and other publications to the list. She was also, from 1975, Honorary Editor for the London Topographical Society, producing its occasional London Topographical Record, her most recent being in 2015, and overseeing the publication of nearly 60 books, maps and other items.
As Ann Cox- Johnson she began work at the City of York Art Gallery, returning to London as Deputy Librarian at Lambeth Palace. She moved to St Marylebone Library, and received her PhD from Leicester University, which she incorporated in her Regent's Park: A Study of the Development of the Area from 1086 to the Present Day (1969). Her many publications on the capital city include The Art and Architecture of London: An Illustrated Guide (1984/1988/1992), Tudor London: A Map and a View (edited with John Schofield FSA, 2001), the first edition of London County Council Bomb Damage Maps 1939–45 (2005) and Historic Views of London: From the Collection of B E C Howarth-Loomes (2008).
She spoke with captivating authority and a regal presence at Gresham College (illustrating with what she called lantern slides) on the subjects of London early in James I’s reign (2004) and Napoleonic war monuments in St Paul’s Cathedral (2005), both of which can be seen in video recordings.
She was also an Honorary Fellow of University College London, was elected a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Horners, and was awarded an MBE in the 2002 New Year honours, as historian and as Honorary Editor for the CS and the LTS.
Adrian James FSA, the Society’s former Assistant Librarian, has kindly written this appreciation for Salon:
‘Ann Saunders, known to the scholarly world as a tireless historian of London and an editor of exceptional assiduity, was equally a keen supporter of the Society of Antiquaries, a regular user of its library and above all a faithful friend to the Society’s staff. The distinguishing mark of her character was outstanding personal kindness, which never once wobbled even when illness had reduced her appearances to painfully slow but determined progressions to the heart of the Society’s library and collections. One always knew that Ann had been within doors when a lavish box of chocolates or packet of gourmet biscuits was discovered on a staff member’s desk!
‘Ann’s astonishingly productive career encompassed the writing of more than a dozen books on London, whilst her longevity as an editor of learned journals must have very few equals, and hardly any peers. Her stints as honorary editor of the journals of the Costume Society and London Topographical Society cover the years 1967 to 2015, a length of editorial service to rival the late L F Salzman FSA’s record for the Sussex Archaeological Society.
‘As recently as 2015, she published in the London Topographical Record the series of Stephen Harrison’s designs for triumphal arches to frame the ceremonial entry of James I into the City of London, thus making this important document in the Society’s Harley Collection widely available for the first time. Vast amounts of archive material must have been photographed for publication over the decades at Ann’s behest. After one such session under Ann’s ever-vigilant eye, the photographer sighed to me, “Dear Ann is not entirely of this world!” Not everyone may have appreciated her devotion to exacting academic standards, which remained with her to the end of her life. Latterly she had taken to corresponding with me at my home address, and it became quite a familiar sight to see Ann’s handwriting on re-used envelopes, a thrifty habit that she attributed to growing up during war-time scarcity.
‘Despite her profound feeling for the history and topography of London she moved to a semi-rural residence in Hertfordshire towards the end of her life, remaining in touch with the Society until the end. She was truly a lady of whom we shall not see the like again.’
The photo is from an appreciation in the London Topographical Society Newsletter (2015).

The Times has published an obituary of the late Sir Conrad Swan FSA, who died in January, subheaded, ‘Globetrotting Garter Principal King of Arms who combined the skills of a professional historian with the romance of heraldry.’ He helped to organise the seating for 3,000 mourners at the state funeral of Sir Winston Churchill in 1965, says the paper, was in attendance upon the Queen at the Silver Jubilee thanksgiving service of 1977, and was a gentleman usher-in-waiting during the visit of Pope John Paul II to Britain in 1982.
‘The presence of an academic-minded Catholic immigrant [Swan was born on Vancouver Island] of limited private means had long irked some members of the College of Arms,’ continues the Times. ‘“The ink is hardly dry on your passport,” sniffed one. They were quick to pounce when Swan wrongly authenticated historical documents that enabled his son-in-law to claim an obscure title and in 1995 he retired on medical grounds.’ Nothing daunted, ‘In 2004 he was asked by King Abdullah of Jordan to help to create a centralised honours system for his country and in 2005 he published his memoir, A King from Canada.’

The Wisdom of Fellows 

‘Thank you for the splendid photos of ships' figureheads in the last Salon,’ writes Maddy Gray FSA from the University of South Wales. ‘They do seem reminiscent of the bare-breasted angels to be found on 16th- and 17th-century tombs. Those on Robert Cecil's tomb at Hatfield are probably the best known. We had a very animated discussion about them on the Church Monuments Society's Twitter feed (@ChurchMonuments) sparked by Helen Wilson's wonderful photos of brightly coloured and very buxom angels on the tomb of Joan Young (d 1603) and her husband Sir John (d 1589) in Bristol Cathedral.

'The single angel on the Bassett/Mansell/Aubrey tomb at Llantrithyd in the Vale of Glamorgan (right) is less luridly coloured but similarly bare-breasted. They are usually holding emblems of mortality – clocks and hour-glasses. This suggested to @stiffleaf and @JonathanFoyle analogies with depictions of the Virtues. Charity is often bare-breasted (and feeding an infant) but Temperance is the one who is depicted with clocks and hourglasses (timepieces enable you to regulate and control your life). Analogies with figureheads were also mentioned. The whole discussion is summarized on the Church Monuments Society's blog.’

I am very grateful to Salon’, writes Robert Merrillees FSA, ‘for notifying us that the Society’s Library has a free 6-week trial of Oxford Art Online, and, of course, to Oxford University Press for making this possible. I promptly took advantage of this opportunity to look up “Cyprus” in the Grove Dictionary of Art, to which I had contributed in 1988, when it was still being published by Macmillan's. Because of the lack of off-prints and the cost of the volumes at the time, I have no hard copies of the essays of mine as originally published, and it is not until now that I have been able to consult the whole entry. It was in fact moving to see at the head of the item the names of all the other contributors, my old colleagues and friends, a number of whom have since passed away, and useful to find some information of relevance to a project of research I am currently conducting on Leonardo da Vinci and Cyprus. Alas, however, since all the submissions were edited and put together in one continuous sequence, what I actually wrote can no longer be easily identified!’

‘It was kind of Peter Cormack FSA to share his views on the Brexit debate with us in Salon,’ writes Matthew Bennett FSA. The former had objected to ‘the seemingly unremitting pro-EU tone of recent Salon articles, which do seem rather unbalanced.’ He felt there must be ‘a good many Fellows whose knowledge of history makes them deeply sceptical of the organisation,’ which he deemed characterised by ‘a minimal component of democratic participation.’
‘It is indeed reassuring’, comments Bennett, ‘to learn that [Cormack] has retained his ideological purity of almost half-a-century ago in regarding the EU as “a malign force for global capitalism”. I wonder if he has taken the opportunity of speaking to a younger generation of scholars, for whom the opportunities afforded by the organisation and its valuable role in funding many projects of key importance in the areas of archaeology and history, so relevant to our Society, in an era when the British government has so manifestly failed to engage?’

Nominations for Council: Last Chance


‘Nominations are sought for three new ordinary Members of Council to be elected at the Anniversary Meeting in April. The office of Director is also open for election as Prof Christopher Scull FSA comes to the end of his three-year term. Prof Scull has agreed to serve for a second term if nominated and elected.
It is Council’s duty, as Trustees, to seek to ensure that the trustee body has the range of skills and capabilities to govern the Society. We have identified the skills that we need on Council as business and change management; exhibition and interpretation, management of the Society’s historic collections; and fund raising and would encourage all Fellows to help us identify individuals who can contribute in these areas.
To nominate a candidate for election to Council or for Director, please complete the nomination form  and return it to the Society's Governance Officer, Dr Rebecca Tomlin ( by 1st March 2019.’

Library Electronic Services 

The Society’s Library has a free 6-week trial of Oxford Art Online, the gateway to Oxford University Press art reference works, including the Grove Dictionary of Art and the Benezit Dictionary of Artists. Fellows can access Oxford Art Online by registering for Open Athens, our electronic services platform, and start using this and other of our resources. Read here about Electronic Services for Fellows and how to register.


Library Closure 

Wednesday 6 March

The Society’s Library will be closed until 2.30, and will only be open from 2.30 – 5.00 because of staff training.

Forthcoming Events for Fellows

You can catch up on meetings you've missed by visiting our YouTube Channel.

Ordinary Meetings of Fellows

Interested in proposing a lecture? Please download the Lecture Proposal Form, and email it to Danielle Wilson Higgins, Communications Manager (

Introductory Tours for Fellows

If you've never visited Burlington House or had an introduction to the Library and Collections, please join an introductory tour. You'll meet the Society's staff, learn about your Fellowship benefits, and discover more from the collections at Burlington House. 

Forthcoming Public Events

Conferences and Seminars

Public Lectures

Public Lectures are held from 13.00 to 14.00 on Tuesdays, with advance booking advised to be sure of a place.

Regional Fellows Groups


South West Fellows

Further information on talks at Exeter can be found here.
Want to join the South West Regional Fellows Group? Events are not currently being organised, but you can sign-up to hear about future activities, here.

Welsh Fellows

Want to join the Welsh Regional Fellows Group? If you would like to attend any current events, please email Bob Child at If you wish to be added to the mailing list, sign-up here.

York Fellows

Want to join the York Regional Fellows Group? If you would like to receive email updates about forthcoming meetings in York, sign-up here.

Other Heritage Events

26 February: Oxford (London)
The Georgian Group is holding a series of lectures exploring aspects of the Georgian architecture of a number of towns and cities in the context of their social and economic history. This lecture by Geoffrey Tyack FSA will focus on Oxford. Details online.

27 February: Archaeological Survey using Airborne Lidar (Oxford)
A short practical course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. This course informs historic environment professionals of the potential and practical use of lidar data and lidar-derived imagery for research and heritage management. The course is designed for a professional audience, particularly those who are currently involved in research, fieldwork and the planning process and who are aware of lidar, but have little or no practical experience with its use. Course Director: Simon Crutchley, Remote Sensing Development Mgr, Historic Places Investigation South and West, Historic England. Tutor: Peter Crow, Project Manager, Historic Environment, Forest Research. Details online.

27–28 February: Braving the Dragons: Art and the Archaeological Imagination (Aberystwyth)
This conference will explore the uncharted territory where art and archaeology meet. Leading practitioners will meet at the Aberystwyth Arts Centre to explore ways in which artists are inspired by archaeological methods and discoveries, and ways in which archaeology is, in many respects, an artistic endeavour. Carmen Mills, artist in residence with the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales, believes this is the first time that archaeologists and artists have met to engage in what she hopes will be a fruitful exchange of ideas that will help to define new fields of academic study and artistic practice. Speakers include Colin Renfrew FSA, Jennifer Wallace, Michael Shanks, Kate Whiteford, Julia Sorrell and John Harvey. Details online.
March (date TBC): Museums and Decolonisation (London)
A talk by Alice Procter, Independent Tour Guide, in a monthly series given by curators, academics, and PhD researchers in the Virginia Woolf Building, King's College. A new PhD-led research group, Exploring the Institutionalisation of Archaeology, is examining the historical and contemporary intersections between archaeology, museums, and collections, hoping to bring to light hidden histories which shaped the discipline of archaeology. Details online.
5 March: The Cyprus Museum: Past, Present and Future (London)
The High Commission of the Republic of Cyprus and UCL Institute of Archaeology host a lecture by Despina Pilides FSA, Curator of Antiquities, Cyprus, to inaugurate a temporary photography exhibition, Archaeological Treasures of the Cyprus Museum, at the Cyprus High Commission, 13 St James’s Square. Details online.
6 March: Law and the Historic Environment (Oxford)
A short practical course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. This course provides an introduction for all who need to gain a broad understanding of the main legislative, regulatory and policy regimes for the historic environment, the ways in which those regimes are being applied at present, and the implications in practice for those working in the area. The course will cover the law of England and Wales only, but not Health and Safety law. Course Directors: Nigel Hewitson, Consultant at Gowling WLG, and Roger M Thomas, barrister and archaeologist. Nigel Hewitson was Legal Director of English Heritage from 2001-2006. Details online.

6 March: Nicholas Hawksmoor’s Designs for the Gardens of Castle Howard (London)
Among documents formerly at Wilton House are four sketches for streams and rockwork attributed to Nicholas Hawksmoor, recently identified as projects for the garden in Wray Wood, Castle Howard. This naturalistic woodland garden was much admired by early visitors for its innovative features, including a cave, an artificial stream with cascades and rockwork, and much classical sculpture inspired by Ovid. Little now survives, but using these drawings and other records, a picture of the garden can be constructed, and Hawksmoor’s role in the design can be better appreciated. The talk by Sally Jeffery FSA, Architectural and Garden Historian, is part of the Gardens Trust’s Winter Lecture Season 2018–19. Tickets can be bought for each lecture, or a discounted season ticket is available. Details online, and contact Sally Jeffery, or 0208 994 6969.

9 March: The Regional Chair (London)
The 2019 Regional Furniture Society Research in Progress meeting will be held at the Conway Hall, Red Lion Square, and will focus on the regionality of chair making, with five papers spanning the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. Speakers will examine a variety of idiosyncratic forms, the materials used, the makers and their customers. The papers will draw on a variety of research methods including fieldwork, archival sources and scientific analysis. Details online.
12 March: Nottingham (London)
The Georgian Group is holding a series of lectures exploring aspects of the Georgian architecture of a number of towns and cities in the context of their social and economic history. This lecture by Pete Smith FSA will focus on Nottingham. Details online.

16 March: Landscapes of the Dead: Exploring Bronze Age Barrowscapes (London)
The first of three linked dayschools in the Prehistoric Society’s highly successful Seeing the Bigger Picture series will be held at the Society of Antiquaries, Burlington House. Speakers include Andrew Jones FSA and Stuart Needham FSA. Details online.

18 March: Celebrating Lady Wallace: Women Philanthropists of the Gilded Age (London)
A study day in the Wallace Collection Lecture Theatre. Julie Amélie Charlotte Castelnau was born into humble circumstances in Paris in 1819, and bequeathed the Wallace Collection to the British nation in 1897. Her bicentenary is the perfect opportunity to discover more about what motivated her bequest and those of other philanthropic women of the period who gifted art to the public. Join Charissa Bremer-David (Curator, Sculpture & Decorative Arts, J. Paul Getty Museum), Kate Hill (Principal Lecturer, School of History & Heritage, University of Lincoln), and our curators Suzanne Higgott FSA, Yuriko Jackall and Lelia Packer, to explore this fascinating theme. Our Research Librarian Helen Jones will discuss the pioneering women who visited the collection and signed the visitors’ book when Lady Wallace lived here at Hertford House. Details online.
18–20 March: Short Course in Radiocarbon Dating and Bayesian Chronological Analysis (Oxford)
A short practical course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. This course is aimed at researchers using radiocarbon and other techniques, including Quaternary geologists, palaeobiologists, archaeologists and marine geoscientists. The first two days will cover key aspects of radiocarbon dating including sample selection, laboratory processes and Bayesian analyses of radiocarbon dates. The third day of the course will expand on this to look at the construction of Bayesian chronologies more generally, including those that rely primarily on other dating techniques. In this third day there will be a focus on using chronologies for environmental records. Course Director: Professor Christopher Ramsey, Author of OxCal, with members of the NERC Radiocarbon Facility based at both Oxford and East Kilbride. Details online.

19 March: Bury St Edmunds (London)
The Georgian Group is holding a series of lectures exploring aspects of the Georgian architecture of a number of towns and cities in the context of their social and economic history. This lecture by Caroline Knight FSA will focus on Bury St Edmunds. Details online.

21 March: A Look at London’s Religious History: From the Romans to the Present Day (London)
A Lambeth Palace Library event. Author, historian and former antiquarian bookseller Philippa Bernard’s new book, Mithras to Mormon, is about the religious history of London over 2,000 years. With Giles Mandelbrote FSA she will discuss the challenges and fascination of researching a book for the general reader on such a wide-ranging subject. Details online.
22–23 March: What is Unique about Cornish Buildings? (St Austell)
The Cornish Buildings Group’s conference, in conjunction with Historic England and the National Trust, will unite aspects of Cornish architectural design with distinctiveness and exclusivity, complementing earlier conferences which focused on the county’s architectural history and contemporary design philosophies. Speakers include Peter Herring FSA, Paul Holden FSA, Joanna Mattingly FSA, Jacky Nowakowski FSA and Alex Woodcock FSA. Details online.

23 March: William Somner, 1606-1669 (Canterbury)
A one-day colloquium at Christ Church University, including papers by Jackie Eales and Kenneth Fincham, will celebrate the life and work of this remarkable Canterbury scholar, and will be preceded by a display of his books and manuscripts in Canterbury Cathedral Archives. Details online. A two-part full life of Somner by David Wright FSA will be appearing in Archaeologia Cantiana in 2019 and 2020. For information and other enquiries please contact Wright at or visit

25 March: The Case of Leo Nardus (1868-1955): Reconstructing the Remarkable Career of a Major yet Forgotten Dealer in Old Masters (London)
Esmée Quodbach, Assistant Director and Editor-in-Chief, Center for the History of Collecting, the Frick Collection, speaks in a series of free Seminars on the History of Collecting, in the Wallace Collection Lecture Theatre. Details online.
27 March: John Brookes: His Landscape Legacy (London)
John Brookes is most often associated with the ‘room outside’, the subject of his seminal book of 1969 inspired by his early work in small London gardens. This talk will demonstrate how over the subsequent 50 years he remained at the forefront of design by creating distinctive gardens and landscapes increasingly based on ecological principles and designing in harmony with nature and the local vernacular – without losing sight of his belief that a garden is a place for use by people. The talk by Barbara Simms, Institute of Historical Research, University of London, is part of the Gardens Trust’s Winter Lecture Season 2018–19. Details online, and contact Sally Jeffery FSA, or 0208 994 6969.
April (date TBC): Scripting Spadework: Publishing Archaeology in the Late 19th and early 20th Centuries (London)
A talk by Amara Thornton FSA, Honorary Research Associate, UCL, the last in a monthly series given by curators, academics, and PhD researchers in the Virginia Woolf Building, King's College. A new PhD-led research group, Exploring the Institutionalisation of Archaeology, is examining the historical and contemporary intersections between archaeology, museums, and collections, hoping to bring to light hidden histories which shaped the discipline of archaeology. Details online.

1-2 April: Antiquarian 'Science' in the Scholarly Society (Society of Antiquaries)
This is workshop II of the AHRC International Networking Grant: Collective Wisdom: Collecting in the Early Modern Academy. What was the relationship between archaeological fieldwork or antiquarianism and learned travel or the Grand Tour? What does collecting on tour say about the manner and scale of personal and institutional contacts between London and the 'scientific' world of the Continent? What tools of natural philosophy were utilised to understand buildings and artefacts? What were the implications of the collecting of ethnographic objects for political dominance and Empire?  This workshop is dedicated to discussing these questions. A link to registration and a draft programme may be found here:

2 April: Exeter (London)
The Georgian Group is holding a series of lectures exploring aspects of the Georgian architecture of a number of towns and cities in the context of their social and economic history. This lecture by Rosemary Yallop will focus on Exeter. Details online.

3 April: Starting in Post-Excavation (Oxford)
A short practical course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. This course will introduce participants to what post-excavation is and why we do it, and to the process that takes us from the site record to a completed report. The focus of the course will be on report types that are common in professional practice and generated by development-led fieldwork (including evaluations, watching briefs and small scale excavations with limited results). It will be ideal for archaeologists in, or moving into, supervisory roles that involve the preparation of reports. Course Directors: Alistair Douglas, Assistant Project Manager, Pre-Construct Archaeology, and Jon Hart, Senior Publications Officer, Cotswold Archaeology. Details online.

4 April: Lambeth Under Laud - New Perspectives on the Archbishop and his Household (London)
A Lambeth Palace Library event. William Laud is one of the most controversial archbishops to have lived at Lambeth, but relatively little is known about his life as a private individual and his role at Lambeth Palace. Leonie James will provide a fresh perspective on Laud and showing what life was like at the Palace while he was head of the household. This talk will be accompanied by a small display of material from the Library’s collections. Details online.

6 April: Exploring the Archaeology of Yorkshire Landscapes (Hull)
A Yorkshire Archaeological & Historical Society conference at the University of Hull, inspired by Tony Pacitto (1931–2003), archaeologist, air photographer, excavator, geophysicist and metal detectorist. The conference will be opened by Ian Stead FSA, and papers from Matthew Oakey, James Lyall, Peter Halkon FSA, Paula Ware, Marcus Jecock FSA and Tony Hunt will focus on landscapes within the East Riding of Yorkshire and parts of North Yorkshire, reviewing techniques for revealing archaeological sites from prehistory through to the medieval period, new insights into Iron Age chariot burials and the later prehistoric settlement of the Yorkshire Wolds. Details online.

9 April: Bristol (London)
The Georgian Group is holding a series of lectures exploring aspects of the Georgian architecture of a number of towns and cities in the context of their social and economic history. This lecture by Andrew Foyle will focus on Bristol. Details online.

10 April: Studying Orchards in Eastern England (London)
Orchards have formed an important part of our culture for centuries, but investigations of their history are hampered by persistent myths concerning the age of particular examples, and about the antiquity of the fruit varieties they contain. These issues are being addressed by a research project based at the University of East Anglia, Norwich. This talk will discuss the history of different kinds of orchard – farmhouse, institutional, commercial, and as elements in designed landscapes. It will also explore a range of related issues, including the age and origins of ‘traditional’ fruit varieties. The talk by Tom Williamson, University of East Anglia, is part of the Gardens Trust’s Winter Lecture Season 2018–19. Details online, and contact Sally Jeffery FSA, or 0208 994 6969.

14–26 April: UK Archaeological Sciences Conference 2019 (Manchester)
The UKAS 2019 conference will take place in the Manchester Institute of Biotechnology (MIB). Themes include site interpretation, cultural heritage resource management, trace element analysis and material sourcing, origins and spread of agriculture, health and disease, isotopes and subsistence strategies, imaging techniques, portable techniques and environmental archaeology and geoscience. Details online.

16 April: Derby (London)
The Georgian Group is holding a series of lectures exploring aspects of the Georgian architecture of a number of towns and cities in the context of their social and economic history. This lecture by Max Craven FSA will focus on Derby. Details online.

16 April: Project Management in Archaeology: an Introduction (Oxford)
A short practical course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. This course is designed for those who are new to the role of project management and will draw on the extensive experience of the tutors in development-led archaeology. While some familiarity with development-led archaeology will be beneficial, the course will be relevant to those taking on project management roles generally within the historic environment sector. Health and Safety management not covered. Course Director: Nick Shepherd, independent heritage consultant and CEO of FAME. Speakers: Ben Ford, Senior Project Manager, Oxford Archaeology; Anne Dodd, Strategy Delivery Officer and former Head of Post-Excavation, Oxford Archaeology. Details online.

29 April: The Formation of Renaissance Taste in Early Victorian Britain: The Second Duke and Duchess of Sutherland as Collectors of Florentine Copies (London)
Giuseppe Rizzo, PhD candidate at the Rupert-Karls-Universität Heidelberg, Germany, speaks in a series of free Seminars on the History of Collecting, in the Wallace Collection Lecture Theatre. Details online.
2 May: Stratigraphic Analysis in Archaeology (Oxford)
A short practical course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. The course is designed for those who are familiar with the processes of excavation and stratigraphic recording, and are looking to develop their skills in the post-excavation stages of analysis, dating, interpretation and description. The course will comprise a combination of presentations to explain theory and approaches, and practical sessions providing opportunities for participants to work with real data. Course Director: Victoria Ridgeway, editor and manager of Pre-Construct Archaeology’s monograph series. Tutor: Rebecca Haslam, Senior Archaeologist, Pre-Construct Archaeology. Details online.

8 May: Dr Andrew Ducarel, Lambeth Librarian 1757-85, Seen through his Brother’s Eyes (London)
A Lambeth Palace Library event. Andrew Ducarel FSA, the eldest of three Huguenot brothers, was a successful ecclesiastical lawyer, Librarian at Lambeth, historian of the palaces of Lambeth and Croydon and of the architecture of Normandy. In The Two Brothers, a new book by Robin Myers FSA, it is his younger brother James who takes centre stage, writing letters to Andrew in London about his life in France. Details online.
8–9 May: The Setting of Heritage Assets and Places (Oxford)
A short practical course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. In the context of official guidance and wide-ranging experience of practical casework, this course explains why the setting of historic places matters, and the principles and practical skills of sound assessment and decision-making. Course Director: George Lambrick, with Stephen Carter (Headland Archaeology), Ian Houlston (LDA Design), Richard Morrice (Historic England), Julian Munby (Oxford Archaeology), Michael Pirie (Green College), Ken Smith (formerly Peak District National Park), Karin Taylor (National Trust) and David Woolley QC (formerly Landmark Chambers). Details online.

9-10 May: Collections in Circulation: Mobile Museum Conference (London)
This conference will bring together scholars from the UK and overseas with a shared interest in the mobility of museum collections, past and present. Their papers will address various aspects of the history of the circulation of objects and their re-mobilisation in the context of object exchange, educational projects and community engagement. This conference is organised by the Mobile Museum project, an AHRC-funded collaboration between Royal Holloway, University of London and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Details online.

18 May: The Medieval Port of London (London)
A conference organised by the Docklands History Group to be held at the Museum of London, where people with a long involvement in the history and archaeology of the River Thames and the City of London will present papers on a varied range of subjects relating to the Medieval Port of London. Speakers include Nathalie Cohen FSA, Gustav Milne FSA, Edward Sargent FSA and John Schofield FSA. Details online.

20 May: Gotha’s Chinese Cabinet: Duke August’s Collection of East Asian Objects (London)
Emily Teo, PhD candidate at University of Kent and Free University of Berlin, speaks in a series of free Seminars on the History of Collecting, in the Wallace Collection Lecture Theatre. Details online.

4 June: The Library of Richard Holdsworth (1590-1649): New Light on the Manuscripts (London)
A Lambeth Palace Library event. Richard Holdsworth – academic, preacher, theologian and bibliophile – bequeathed his entire library to the University of Cambridge. On its arrival in 1664, this amounted to a second foundation of Cambridge University Library, but it has barely been studied. Jean-Pascal Pouzet’s presentation offers a survey of current research on the collection, together with the first tangible results on Holdsworth’s manuscripts. Details online.
24 June: Delivering Public Benefit through Archaeology (Oxford)
A short practical course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. This course looks at how we can plan projects to deliver public benefit consistently, how to communicate that benefit effectively, and how to evaluate the impact of our work. It is designed for all those responsible for commissioning, specifying and/or delivering programmes of work in our sector that aim to deliver public benefit. Course Director: Kate Geary, Head of Professional Development and Practice, CifA. Tutors: Taryn Nixon, independent archaeologist and heritage adviser, formerly Chief Executive of MOLA (1997-2017); Rob Lennox, CIfA, whose PhD research looked at heritage and politics in the public value era. Details online.

1 July: A Woman of Taste: Mrs R A Workman’s Collection of Modern French Painting (London)
Frances Fowle, Professor of Nineteenth-Century Art, University of Edinburgh and Senior Curator of French Art, National Gallery of Scotland, speaks in a series of free Seminars on the History of Collecting, in the Wallace Collection Lecture Theatre. Details online.
3–4 July: Understanding and Conserving Historic Gardens and Designed Landscapes (Oxford)
A short practical course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. An increasing number of historic gardens and landscapes are opening their doors to the paying public. Owners and managers, reliant on tourist income, are seeking to widen their visitor base. Such development can sometimes be at odds with the conservation needs of historic sites, and this course will provide the tools for balancing the needs of developing tourist attractions with conservation and care. For trustees, volunteers and staff responsible for managing or working in a historic garden or designed landscape. Course Director: John Watkins, Head of Gardens and Landscape at the English Heritage Trust. Speakers to include: Brian Dix, Linden Groves, Emily Parker, Robin Copeland, David Lambert. Details online.

17 July: Translating Becket: New Themes, New Meanings in the Life and Afterlife of St Thomas of Canterbury 1170-2020 (London)
A Lambeth Palace Library event. The talk by Nicholas Vincent FSA will follow the Annual General Meeting of the Friends of Lambeth Palace Library. He has published widely on English and European history in the 12th and 13th centuries, most recently on King John and Magna Carta. This lecture anticipates the 850th anniversary of Becket’s martyrdom next year and will be accompanied by a display of manuscripts from the Library’s collections. Details from or 020 7898 1400.

29 July: ‘The Great Joss and his Playthings’: George IV as a Print Collector (London)
Kate Heard, Senior Curator of Prints and Drawings, Royal Collection Trust, speaks in a series of Seminars on the History of Collecting, in the Wallace Collection Lecture Theatre. Details online.
18 September: Post-Excavation Assessment in Practice (Oxford)
A short practical course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. This course will introduce recent guidance to PX, and review the essential components of assessment and updated project design. In the afternoon we will review examples from current practice and consider how far they meet their purpose and justify funding decisions. The course is designed for those in supervisory, junior management or specialist roles who will be compiling and contributing to PX assessments, and those in consultancy and curatorial roles who commission and evaluate them. Course Director: Leo Webley, Head of Post-Excavation, Oxford Archaeology South. Tutors: Edward Biddulph, Senior Project Manager and Roman pottery specialist, Oxford Archaeology South; Sarah Wyles, Senior Environmental Officer, Cotswold Archaeology. Details online.

25–27 September: Heritage Values and the Assessment of Significance (Oxford)
A short practical course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. Significance assessment is a key part of management and of development within the historic environment. This course will introduce the process, show you what is involved in preparing assessments of significance, teach you how to read and judge such assessments, and explore the ways in which they can be used. Open to all, but of particular interest to heritage asset managers and advisers, planners, historic environment professionals and architects, surveyors and others who do not specialise in heritage but may need to understand assessments and their value in guiding change. Course Director: Stephen Bond, Director of Heritage Places and joint author of Managing Built Heritage. Course Co-Director: Henry Russell, Course Director of the programme in Conservation of the Historic Environment, Reading University. Details online.

30 September: ‘The Aura of Popularity’: The Rise and Fall of Bartolomé Esteban Murillo in the Nineteenth-Century British Art Market (London)
Isabelle Kent, Enriqueta Harris Frankfort Curatorial Assistant, The Wallace Collection, speaks in a series of Seminars on the History of Collecting, in the Wallace Collection Lecture Theatre. Details online.

10 October: Archaeological Desk-Based Assessments (Oxford)
A short practical course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. This course informs participants about the role of desk-based assessments in managing the cultural heritage resource and provides a practical guide to their production. It will also include guidance on the use of desk-based assessments to fulfil the requirements of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF). The course will be of interest to all those who are currently (or hope to be) involved in the commissioning or production of desk-based assessments. It is targeted towards new entrants to the profession and those who would like to develop skills in this area. Course Directors: Jill Hind (formerly Senior Project Mgr Oxford Archaeology) and Melanie Pomeroy-Kellinger, County Archaeologist for Wiltshire. Details online.

28 October: Architectural Salvage from Cairo to London: The Pivotal Role of the Paris Exhibitions of 1867 and 1878 (London)
Moya Carey, Curator of Islamic Collections, Chester Beatty Library, Dublin, and Mercedes Volait, Research Professor at CNRS, based at InVisu, INHA, Paris, speak in a series of Seminars on the History of Collecting, in the Wallace Collection Lecture Theatre. Details online.

31 October: Archaeological Writing for Publication (Oxford)
A short practical course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. This course will introduce the standard types of published reports currently produced by archaeologists, and how the scope and content of a report is planned. The course will then focus on two key components, the stratigraphic narrative and the discussion, and the most effective and successful ways of approaching the planning, writing and illustration of these. This will include a critical review of a number of examples, to identify common mistakes and how to avoid them. We will also look at the special requirements that apply to writing in a professional and academic context. The course will involve some preparatory reading before the training day. Course Director: Elizabeth Popescu, Post-Excavation and Publications Manager, Oxford Archaeology East. Details online.

25 November: A ‘Fauve de la Curiosité’: The Hybrid Career of Edouard Jonas (1883-1961), Dealer and Curator (London)
Barbara Lasic, Lecturer in History of Art and Coordinator of Postgraduate Programmes, University of Buckingham, speaks in a series of free Seminars on the History of Collecting, in the Wallace Collection Lecture Theatre. Details online.

27–29 November: Public Inquiry Workshop (Oxford)
A short course at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, designed to provide training in key skills and concepts for archaeologists and built heritage professionals. This course is a practical workshop carefully designed to improve the performance of anyone who might be called upon to participate in a Public Inquiry concerned with the historic environment. It will present the terms of procedure, the roles of the participants and the general feel of a Public Inquiry. A mock Public Inquiry will be mounted using a genuine case study. Training for potential witnesses will be given in how to prepare evidence for a Public Inquiry, how to produce proofs of evidence, and to experience them being given and tested under realistic conditions. You will be allocated a role to play in the Inquiry and asked to prepare a proof of evidence to fit this role. Active participation limited to 14 participants. There will also be a limited number of places available for observers. Course Directors: Roger M Thomas, Barrister and Archaeologist; George Lambrick, Independent Archaeology and Heritage Consultant. Planning Inspector: Richard Tamplin. Advocates: David Woolley QC and Allan Ledden, Solicitor. Details online.

Call for Papers

5 October: One Thousand Years of Ceramic Innovation (London)
Joint conference of the Medieval Pottery Research Group and the Society for Post-Medieval Archaeology, at Mortimer Wheeler House, London. From the introduction of the potter’s wheel, to the spread of factory production during the Industrial Revolution and beyond, the ceramic industries of the UK have been progressively transformed by waves of innovation. This conference will focus on technological, stylistic and functional advances introduced into potteries across the country from the 11th century to the present day. Expressions of interest with a brief summary (up to 200 words) for papers up to 30 minutes long (including questions) should be sent by 1 May 2019 to Further details online.


The Emery Walker Trust seeks a Chair to replace Michael Hall FSA, who steps down at the end of 2019. It is anticipated that interviews will take place in April or May, with the successful candidate joining the Trustee Board in June.

The Trust owns and opens to the public Emery Walker’s House at 7 Hammersmith Terrace, London, which contains some of the UK’s most authentic and best-preserved Arts & Crafts interiors. The role of Chair principally involves strategic leadership of a small historic-house museum, chairing Trustee meetings, and acting with others as the Trust’s public face, in particular for fund-raising initiatives. The post is unpaid (expenses are reimbursed), and involves up to three days work a month in addition to attendance at meetings.
Candidates should submit a letter by email to (who can provide further details) explaining why they are qualified for the post and attaching a CV and the names of two referees. For further information about the Emery Walker Trust see online.

Propose a Lecture or Seminar

Please download and complete the Lecture Proposal Form, and email it to Danielle Wilson Higgins (, the Society's Communications Manager, if you are interested in giving a lecture at one of the Society's Ordinary Meetings (Thursday evenings at 17.00) or as part of our Public Lecture series (occasional Tuesday afternoons at 13.00). We welcome papers based on new research or themes related to the Society's field of interest: the study of the material past. You can view our current lecture programme in the Events section of our website.

Fellows are also encouraged to propose topics or themes for conferences or seminars that bring scholars and professionals from a variety of disciplines together to explain, discuss and debate our material culture. Please download and complete the Conference Proposal Form, and email it to Danielle Wilson Higgins (, if you are interested in helping us organise such an event.


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