Salon Archive

Issue: 228

Claude Blair (1922—2010) and Lesley Lewis (1909—2010)

It is with sorrow that we begin this issue of Salon with the news of the deaths of two of our longest serving Fellows.

Lesley Lewis (who passed away on 29 January 2010) celebrated her 100th birthday on 8 March 2009, and the forty-sixth anniversary of her election as a Fellow on 9 January 2010. Until five years ago, Lesley attended virtually every meeting of the Society, always sitting in the same place and always quick to command any mumbling or inaudible lecturer to ‘speak up’! A memorial service will take place at noon on Saturday 27 March 2010 at Holy Trinity, Sloane Street, London SW1, with a reception afterwards.

Lesley was among the first four students to enrol at the Courtauld Institute when it opened for business in October 1932, and the following information comes from the Courtauld’s tribute to its oldest alumna. ‘Her dissertation, conducted under the supervision of James Byam Shaw, was entitled “The Rise of Neo-Classic Architecture in England”. Mrs Lewis’s tenacity and determination were evidenced by her response to her first job offer, after leaving the Courtauld in 1937, as the Registrar of City and Guilds College in Kennington: when they tried to reduce the weekly salary from £5 to £4 because she was a woman, she refused to accept the job. The college capitulated and employed her with full pay. Mrs Lewis later went on to publish works on a wide range of subjects, including Connoisseurs and Secret Agents (1961) about the covert activities in Rome between Cardinal Alessandro Albani and the antiquarian collector and spy, Philip von Stosch. Her rich life included service on the nightly fire watch in London during World War II, time spent living in the Sudan with her late husband, and —after becoming a fully qualified barrister — enjoying dinners at Lincoln’s Inn as one of its first female members.’

Claude Blair died on 21 February at the age of eighty-seven. Our Fellow John Blair said that his father ‘died peacefully in Epsom hospital after a short illness’, and that ‘we are immensely thankful that his intellectual vigour and enthusiasm remained undimmed until almost the end and that, over Christmas, he was able to finish his section of a new book on the Greenwich armouries (to be published by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York) thus achieving an ambition he had held for fifty years’.

Claude’s funeral will be held on Thursday 11 March, at 2pm, in the church of St Sepulchre Newgate in the City of London. Light refreshments will be provided afterwards in Cutlers’ Hall, which is near at hand in Warwick Lane.

In lieu of flowers, the Claude Blair Memorial Conservation Fund has been set up by the Church Monuments Society (of which Claude Blair was a founder-member and, at the time of his death, the senior Vice-President). Donations will be used to conserve one or more monuments in his memory and can be made via PayPal, or by sending a cheque to Michael Thompson, Hon Treasurer CMS, Hill Top Farm, Lenton, Grantham NG33 4HB. The value of the donation will be significantly increased if you also complete a Gift Aid form, which can also be obtained from Michael; tel: 01476 585012).

Claude Blair was elected a Fellow on 1 March 1956, and was awarded the Society’s Gold Medal in 1998. Like many Fellows he had multiple interests, but was perhaps best known as one of the world’s foremost authorities on historic European metalwork, and on arms and armour in particular. His first book, European Armour c 1066 to c 1700, published in 1958, is still the standard textbook on the subject.

Having joined the staff of the Tower of London Armouries in 1951, he moved to the Victoria and Albert Museum in 1956, and remained there until his retirement from the post of Keeper of Metalwork in 1982. Having published more than 200 books and articles on arms and armour during his own museum career, Claude believed in museums as places of research and he made no secret of his sadness and disapproval at the trend in many leading museums to abandon scholarship and publication. He was also a gifted communicator and his Easter holiday lectures at the V&A in the 1950s and 1960s are remembered with pleasure and amusement by many of those who attended as children and who are now scholars in their own right.

His output in retirement remained undiminished, as did his generous support for causes that he believed in. He has served on the Church of England’s Council for the Care of Churches and on several of its committees, and also as a Trustee of the Churches Conservation Trust (formerly the Redundant Churches Fund). As a liveryman of the London Goldsmiths’ Company he was much involved with the Company’s scheme to encourage the establishment of diocesan treasuries, where historic church plate can be seen by the public. He helped to found the Arms and Armour Society (serving as the founder editor of its journal from 1953) and served as the first President of both the Church Monuments Society and the Medieval Dress and Textile Society.

Obituaries are in preparation for publication in the journals of the societies that Claude supported and in the national press, and Salon will report on these in due course. On a personal note, Salon’s editor will greatly miss Claude’s regular e-mails. When Salon first began to appear, Claude was one of those Fellows (along with the late John Coales) who would respond to every issue with a list of errors of fact, date or spelling. But Claude was motivated by a desire to help rather than to diminish. Over time, he became more and more generous with information and anecdotes, some of which he did not want to see published in his name, but that he nevertheless wished to share with the Fellowship.

He was a particular connoisseur of rogues. Last March, for example, he supplied much of the information for Salon’s report on the activities of the nefarious John Nevin, who, between 1944 and 1953, stole thousands of artefacts from the V&A stores and used them to furnish his council house at Nightingale Close, in Chiswick. In the same vein, one of Claude’s last books (co-authored by Marian Campbell, FSA) was a catalogue of nineteenth-century fakes of medieval and Renaissance objects known as Marcy pieces. Claude’s detective work led to the identification of the Spanish artist, Ignacio León y Escosura (1834—1901), as the master-mind behind the forgeries. In writing about him, Claude was clearly torn between moral indignation at the deceit involved and admiration for a man whose feeling for fine craftsmanship in metal (akin to his own) enabled him to produce such convincing artefacts.

Forthcoming meetings

Thursday 4 March: ‘Sark: a sacred isle’, by Barry Cunliffe, FSA

Thursday 11 March: ‘The use and place of origin of the exotic stones employed by the builders of the Neolithic passage tombs at Brugh na Boinne, Co Meath’, by George Eogan, FSA, and George Sevastopulo

Thursday 18 March: ‘Sandwich, the “completest medieval town in England”: from its origins to 1600’, by Helen Clarke, FSA, and Sarah Pearson, FSA

Sandwich is a wonderful example of a medieval town, little known outside east Kent. Its town walls, parish churches, court hall, school and streets — lined with thirteenth- to sixteenth-century houses — are testament to a once-thriving medieval port. This lecture will report on a project that has combined studies of the town’s archaeology, topography, buildings and documentary history to uncover its origins, growth and decline. The lecture will be followed by the launch of the book arising from the project.

Friday 23 April: Anniversary Meeting

Learning from the Iraq War

Evidence submitted to the Chilcot Inquiry by thirteen of the UK’s leading heritage organisations, including our own Society, says that the ransacking of Baghdad’s National Museum and National Library and Archive and of numerous provincial museums was due to major shortcomings in the planning and implementation of the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

The submission to the inquiry says that pre-invasion planning for heritage and culture was ineffective, informal, secretive and limited in scope. Worse still was the failure to plan for the aftermath, despite the vociferously expressed concerns of many national and international heritage bodies. Such failures meant that the task of winning ‘hearts and minds’ was made all the harder; furthermore, ‘alarming evidence’ suggests that the proceeds of the illicit trade in looted antiquities were used to fund the subsequent insurgency.

Summarising the heritage organisations’ key concerns, Harry Reeves, Secretary General of the UK National Commission for UNESCO, said: ‘The lessons from the Iraq war and occupation clearly shows that the UK urgently needs to ratify the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict to ensure the armed forces receive appropriate cultural property awareness training in preparation for any future deployments.’

Bronze Age shipwreck discovered off the Devon coast

Members of an avocational group of archaeological divers — the South West Maritime Archaeological Group (SWMAG) — have discovered a cargo of copper and tin ingots dating from the late Bronze Age. The cargo was discovered a year ago and excavated over a ten-month period but was made public for the first time at the annual International Shipwreck Conference in Plymouth last month. This weekend, Chris Yates, one of the SWMAG divers who found and recorded the wreck site, was awarded the top prize of £1,500 in the annual Awards for the Presentation of Heritage Research held at the British Museum.

Chris Yates told his audience at the Awards that there was no doubt that bun-shaped ingots had ended up on the seabed as a result of a single catastrophic disaster: the boat carrying the cargo had either overturned, spilling its content, or had sunk in what is a notorious ship’s graveyard at Moor Sand beach, to the east of Salcombe.

The 259 copper ingots found at the site — weighing 64kg in total — amounted to 0.1 per cent of all the copper known in the UK from the Bronze Age. The find included the largest tin ingot ever found, weighing 9kg, among a total of twenty-seven tin ingots weighing in at 20kg. Gold torques and a Ewart-Park Phase leaf sword (800—700 BC) were among the other finds.

Chris Yates said that the find was clear evidence of long-distance trade in bulk goods in this period of the Bronze Age. Metallurgist Peter Northover, at Oxford Materials, has analysed samples from two of the ingots and found a precise match with a copper-working site in Switzerland. It is possible, said Dr Northover, that the ingots ‘are the produce of a multitude of countries, scattered right around Europe, up and down the Mediterranean and Atlantic coasts’.

Our Fellow Dr Stuart Needham said: ‘There was a complex lattice of interactions across Europe throughout this period. The mainstay of this exchange network might have been a number of vessels undertaking short coastal journeys; material may also have moved across land. But it is eminently possible at this stage that there were also specialist mariners plying the Atlantic seaways: people who know how to read the tides and the stars and capable of going longer distances.’

A major landmark in radiocarbon dating

Researchers at Queen’s University, Belfast, led by our Fellow Professor Gerry McCormac and Dr Paula Reimer, have published a new calibration curve that extends our ability to date organic materials, such as cloth, wood and plant fibre, back 50,000 years and considerably improves the accuracy of earlier parts of the curve.

Writing in the journal Radiocarbon, Dr Reimer said: ‘The new radiocarbon calibration curve will be used worldwide by archaeologists and earth scientists to convert radiocarbon ages into a meaningful time scale, comparable to historical dates or other estimates of calendar age. This agreed calibration curve now extends over the entire normal range of radiocarbon dating, up to 50,000 years before today. Comparisons of the new curve to ice-core or other climate archives will provide information about changes in solar activity and ocean circulation.’

Carbon dating works by the amount of the radioactive carbon-14 isotope in organic materials. This is absorbed from the atmosphere while the organism is alive; absorption stops at death and carbon-14 decays at a measurable rate thereafter. The amount left in a sample gives an indication of how old the sample is when compared to the calibration curve, which includes adjustments for the many variables that impact on the amount of carbon-14 in the atmosphere at any one period. This is affected by a number of factors, including solar activity and the strength of the earth’s magnetic field, as well as the release of carbon into the atmosphere from organic reservoirs, ocean sediments and sedimentary rocks.

The team at Queen’s University, Belfast, have been working for the best part of thirty years to plot the new curve, known as INTCAL09, alongside statisticians at the University of Sheffield and colleagues at Queen’s School of Geography, Archaeology and Palaeoecology.

Fakes from around the world

The Victorian and Albert Museum has reported that its recent exhibition on fakes and forgeries was an unexpected success. Shown between 23 January and 21 February, the display was concerned with the investigative methods used by the Art and Antiques Unit of the Metropolitan Police Service in detecting and preventing the increasingly sophisticated crime of art forgery.

The exhibits included the diverse body of work assembled by the forger, Shaun Greenhalgh, who executed such fake ‘masterpieces’ as the Egyptian Amarna princess, sold to Bolton Museum for £440,000 in 2003 before being seized by the police in March 2006, and paintings purporting to be the work of L S Lowry. Ironically, the Amarna princess — made from translucent alabaster in the Egyptian Amarna style of 1350 BC and supposedly representing one of the daughters of the Pharaoh Akhenaten and Queen Nefertiti — has attracted more public interest since being revealed as a forgery than it did during its three years on display as a genuine Egyptian artefact.

Other objects that have recently been revealed as less than authentic include relics of Joan of Arc, a Gospel of St Mark and the putative skull of St Bridget. The so-called ‘relics of Joan of Arc’, kept in Chinon, France, have been analysed recently by a team of experts and the results published in the journal Forensic Science International. The relics first surfaced in 1867, in a pharmacy jar with a label that read: ‘Remains found under the pyre of Joan of Arc, Maid of Orleans’. Far from being the charred remains of the patron saint of France, the jar is now known to contain a 4-inch-long human rib and part of a cat femur, both dating to the sixth to third centuries BC, three fragments of charcoal and ‘a brownish textile scrap’.

Philippe Charlier, a forensic scientist at Raymond Poincare Hospital in Garches, France, whose team carried out the research, said that the textile resembled an ancient Egyptian mummy wrapping and a black substance coating the bones had contained bitumen, wood resins, gypsum and other chemicals similar to ancient Egyptian embalming ointment. Pine pollen was also identified, probably from pine resin, commonly used during Egyptian embalming. The researchers believe the remains were first stored as mummia — parts of Egyptian mummies used in medieval pharmaceutics. The researchers are still uncertain whether this was a forgery designed to profit from a nineteenth-century resurgence of interest in Joan of Arc or ‘the prank of a medical student that has been taken much too seriously’.

In the USA, scholars, conservators and scientists have collaborated to prove that one of the jewels of the University of Chicago’s manuscript collection is, in fact, a skilled late nineteenth- or early twentieth-century forgery. The 44-page ‘Archaic Mark’ codex was acquired by the university in 1937. Found among the possessions of John Askitopoulos, an Athenian collector and dealer of antiquities, after his death in 1917, it has been hailed as an early (perhaps thirteenth-century) record of the Gospel of Mark, textually the closest known manuscript to the fourth-century Greek Codex Vaticanus.

Debate about the authenticity of the codex began in 1947, but was re-ignited in 2006 when (as Salon reported at the time) the codex was published online, allowing international experts to examine the work closely for the first time. The resulting cross-disciplinary team has now published its conclusions in the journal Novum Testamentum: research microscopist Joseph Barabe concludes that the white colour used in the codex contains the pigment lithopone, which was not available until 1874, thereby setting a terminus post quem date for the codex, while textual scholar Margaret Mitchell found that the codex text includes the same errors as an edition of the Greek New Testament published by Philipp Buttmann in 1856, leading her to conclude that the creator of the ‘Archaic Mark’ used Buttmann’s text as a guide for his forgery.

The university intends to preserve the codex and encourage its use for further research into the forger’s techniques. ‘Those who study forgeries may be the largest beneficiaries of our scholarship’, said Mitchell.

Finally, a report published in the journal PLoS ONE has established that the sacred relics of St Bridget (Birgitta Birgersdotter) of Sweden (1303—73) and her daughter St Katarina (1331—81), kept in a shrine in Vadstena Abbey, in central Sweden, are not from maternally related individuals and that one skull dates from 1215 to 1270, so is too old to have belonged to either Bridget or her daughter, while the other is too late, dating from the period 1470 to 1670.

‘Our DNA analyses show that we can exclude a mother and daughter relationship’, said Marie Allen, of Uppsala University’s Department of Genetics and Pathology, ‘while the carbon-dating has revealed a difference of at least 200 years between the skulls.’

Bridget lived in Rome from 1350 until her death in 1373. She was originally buried at San Lorenzo in Rome, but her remains were returned to Sweden in 1381, after which relics were selected and given to churches, monasteries, kings and popes throughout Europe. The Europe-wide Bridget cult was based on the supposed efficacy of prayers that she is said to have written after a vision in which Christ revealed the number of blows that he had suffered during his arrest, trial, flagellation and crucifixion. The extravagance of the claims made for the power of these prayers was a frequent target of Reformation theologians.

British Museum to show artefacts from Islam’s holiest sites

The British Museum has announced that it is to stage an exhibition on the history of the Hajj — the ritual pilgrimage to Mecca that every devout Muslim is required to make at least once in their life. Non-Muslims are prohibited from entering the city of Mecca, so Hajj rituals are largely unknown to the Christian world. Huge annual tribal gatherings have been taking place in Mecca for centuries. The Prophet Muhammad’s seventh-century innovation was to replace the worship of multiple tribal deities with monotheistic unity.

The museum hopes to recreate the Kaaba, the sacred marble-clad structure at the centre of Mecca which Muslims believe was built to be the world’s oldest structure and to have been built by Abraham. Among the highlights of the exhibition will be pieces of the Kiswa, the huge silk covering embroidered with passages from the Koran that is used to wrap the Kaaba during the month of the Hajj. A new kiswa is made annually, then cut up and distributed to Muslim shrines and dignitaries. The earliest of these textiles to survive were made in Yemen and Egypt in the tenth century. Also on display will be the manuscript memoirs of Lady Evelyn Cobbold, the first British-born Muslim woman to make the pilgrimage in 1933, and Richard Burton, who travelled to Mecca in disguise in 1853. The exhibition will also include photographs and the personal account of Hassan Arero, anthropologist and British Museum curator, who went on Hajj in 2009.

Bosworth Battlefield rediscovered

Five years of intensive historical, topographical and archaeological research, led by our Fellow Glenn Foard of the Battlefields Trust, has finally borne fruit in the finding of the true site of England’s most famous lost battlefield. The location of the battle was revealed at a conference held on 20 February 2010 at County Hall, Leicester, along with a collection of artefacts found during fieldwork, including the largest collection of round shot fired from artillery on any medieval battlefield in Europe and a tiny silver gilt badge in the shape of a boar — the personal emblem of Richard III, who was cut down on the battlefield, fated to be the last English king to die in battle.

Mapping the round shot, along with finds such as sword mounts and coins, has enabled the battle site to be pinned down to the fields straddling Fen Lane, in the Leicestershire parish of Upton, nearly two miles south west of where the battle has traditionally been placed. Fen Lane follows the route of the Roman road linking Leicester and Atherstone, the towns from which Richard and Henry approached the battle.

Frank Baldwin, chair of the Battlefields Trust charity, said: ‘This is a discovery as important to us as Schliemann discovering Troy’, and he called on the UK Government to introduce statutory protection for historic battlefield sites.

Grade-II listed status for Abbey Road studios

English Heritage and the Department of Culture, Media and Sport responded quickly last week to the news that EMI, the British music company, was considering the sale of its world-renowned recording studios at Abbey Road. With no statutory designation to prevent a new owner redeveloping the building, English Heritage asked the Government to fast-track a listing application for the site that had been submitted in 2003.

English Heritage was backed by a spontaneous public campaign that quickly gathered international support, and even had the National Trust suggesting that it would acquire the building if necessary as a last resort. Such measures proved unnecessary when EMI said that it had no intention of selling the 1830s villa, converted to a recording studio in 1931. Two days later, on 23 February 2010, the Department of Culture announced that it had accepted the recommendation of a Grade II listing for the studios ‘in acknowledgement of their outstanding cultural interest and to ensure that recording artists for generations to come can continue to make and record music in the same rooms as musical icons of years gone by’.

English Heritage issued a statement saying that it was ‘delighted that the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport had endorsed our advice and listed the building’. Our Fellow Simon Thurley, Chief Executive of English Heritage, said: ‘Some of the defining sounds of the twentieth century were created within the walls of the Abbey Road Studios … which act as a modern-day monument to the history of recorded sound and music.’

Italian archaeologists find sacred tree enclosure

An archaeological team led by Filippo Coarelli, Perugia University’s recently retired Professor of Archaeology, has uncovered the remains of a stone enclosure dating from the mid- to late Bronze Age (twelfth and thirteenth centuries BC) near the town of Nemi, in the Alban Hills, twenty miles south of Rome. Coarelli believes that the enclosure, which stands amidst the ruins of an immense sanctuary dedicated to Diana, the goddess of hunting, along with the remains of terracing, fountains, cisterns and a nymphaeum, once surrounded a large sacred tree, such as the one that the pre-Roman Latins believed symbolised the power of their priest-king. According to Latin mythology, anyone who succeeded in capturing a branch of the well-protected tree had the right to challenge the king to a fight; success in battle entitled the challenger to become the new king.

Our Fellow Christopher Smith, Director of the British School at Rome, commented that ‘this is an intriguing discovery and adds evidence to the fact that this was an extraordinarily important sanctuary; we know that trees were grown in containers at temple sites and that the Latins gathered here to worship right up until the founding of the Roman republic in 509 BC’.

Mosaic for sale

When the huge Roman mosaic was last opened at Woodchester in 1973, Salon’s editor was among the 141,000 visitors who came to wonder at the scale of the mosaic, the largest to survive north of the Alps, with its colourful depiction of Orpheus with his lyre and hunting dog surrounded by peacocks, leopards and numerous other wild creatures enchanted by his song.

One of those privileged to study the mosaic at close quarters was our Fellow David Neal, who drew every tessera in situ over a three-week period, and then took eighteen months to complete a painting at the scale of 1:10, using a piece of paper that had to be especially made for the task at a paper mill in Kent. David remembers the sheer physical challenge of spending hours on end stretched over the painting to reach the areas in the centre; once finished, it was to be eighteen months before David felt he could tackle another mosaic. Today he continues to wrestle with the problems of reproducing a painting that measures more than five feet by five, as he prepares to have the painting photographed so that it can form the triumphant conclusion to the fourth and final volume of the Romano-British Mosaics corpus that he and his co-author, Stephen Cosh, will see published by the Society of Antiquaries later this year.

Meanwhile, back to 1973, and another detailed record was being made of the mosaic by two brothers, Bob and John Woodward, who obtained permission to lay a grid and take 300 colour slides. They used these as part of their ten-year labour of love to produce a faithful replica by projecting the slides from below on to a transparent workbench and using 1.6 million clay tesserae to recreate the exact size and colour of the originals. Having finished the work, the Woodward brothers then struggled for many years to find a home for the 2,500 sq ft mosaic, eventually moving from redundant chapels and halls to what they hoped would be a permanent home at Prinknash Abbey, near Gloucester.

Now the monks of Prinknash have decided not to renew the lease on the building used to display the replica mosaic and the Woodward brothers have decided that the time has come to let a new owner take responsibility for it. The mosaic is to be sold at auction on 24 June 2010 by Chorley’s of Prinknash. No guide price has been set and the auctioneers say: ‘the mosaic breaks down into sections, is easily transportable and can be set up in three hours; it is very versatile because you could put Perspex on top and walk on it’. The perfect gift, then, for someone with a very large home and aspirations to live like the provincial governor for whose palace the original was probably made.

News of Fellows

Our Fellow Rosemary Hill has been awarded the 2010 Historians of British Art award, which is given for outstanding books on the history of British art and visual culture in three categories: pre-1800, post-1800 and multi-authored volumes. Her book on Stonehenge (published by Profile and Harvard) won the pre-1800 award and is concerned not with the monument itself so much as the ways in which it has been interpreted by people as diverse as twentieth-century countercultural philosophers and ley-line tracers to John Wood the architect, whose Circus, in Bath, widely imitated by other architects, was inspired by Stonehenge.

Our Fellows Jane Kennedy and Professor Sir Barry Cunliffe CBE have both been reappointed as Commissioners of English Heritage for a second term of office that will run to 14 February 2014. Jane Kennedy is a conservation architect, a senior partner in Purcell Miller Tritton LLP and cathedral architect to Ely, Newcastle and Christ Church, Oxford. Professor Sir Barry Cunliffe was Professor of European Archaeology at Oxford from 1972 until his retirement in 2007. Sir Barry served as Interim Chairman of English Heritage from 17 September 2008 to 26 July 2009, following the death of Lord Bruce Lockhart and before the appointment of Baroness Andrews, the current Chair.

Our Fellow Paul Buckland has won an important case in his long-running legal battle for compensation after he resigned from his post as Professor of Environmental Archaeology at Bournemouth University in 2007 in a dispute over exam standards. Professor Buckland failed eighteen out of sixty second-year undergraduates who took examinations in 2006. Sixteen students retook the paper and Professor Buckland failed all but two of them, judging many of the papers to be ‘of poor quality’. A second marker endorsed his scores, as did the university’s board of examiners.

However, the exam papers were then remarked a third time without Professor Buckland’s knowledge and the grades improved. On discovering what had happened, Professor Buckland felt he had to resign in protest against what he called ‘an unequivocal affront to my integrity’ and part of a ‘much larger process of dumbing down’.

An employment tribunal decided in August 2008 that there had been a ‘fundamental breach of the implied term of trust and confidence’ in his employment contract and that he had been constructively dismissed. The university appealed against that decision, and won, but the Court of Appeal has now restored the original ruling. Lord Justice Sedley said that the university could not defend the way it had undermined Professor Buckland’s status and it was the ‘inexorable outcome’ that he had been constructively dismissed. The level of compensation is subject to negotiation between Professor Buckland and the university; if they fail to reach an agreement, the employment tribunal has the power to set an appropriate level of compensation.

You can read an interview with Paul Buckland on his personal battle for higher standards in university education in the Sunday Telegraph.

Lives remembered

From our Fellow Catherine Johns comes this short note on the Hon Mrs Mary Anna Marten, who died at the age of eighty on 18 January 2010. ‘As a British Museum Trustee, she was far more accessible and “hands-on” than most. I remember that when she first visited the then P&RB department soon after she had been appointed, and we were all introduced to her, I felt rather wary: here was a stately, cheerful and very aristocratic lady, who owned a substantial tract of Wiltshire (complete with prehistoric monuments), but who apparently lacked any academic background in archaeology. How would she familiarise herself with our work and understand our problems? It didn’t take long to realise that her combination of formidable intelligence and plain common sense, and the charm and warmth that made her so easy to talk to, enabled her to absorb information very rapidly and accurately. When I was in the P&E department last week, little groups of curators kept forming to lament the news of Mary Anna’s death and to tell their stories about her. She made a significant contribution to the work of the BM, and she will be remembered with real affection as well as respect … a great lady.’

Our Fellow Martin Biddle wrote to The Times recently to put on record the circumstances surrounding the acquisition by the Metropolitan Museum of the so-called Bury St Edmunds Cross. Martin wrote: ‘Your perceptive obituary of Tom Hoving (December 15) says that he was “instrumental in recognising” the so-called Bury St Edmunds Cross, the finest surviving English Romanesque ivory. Not so. Rumours of its existence had long been around the museum world but it first emerged (before Hoving had even heard of it) on December 5, 1960, when it was brought to the British Museum by its owner, Ante Topic Mimara, a wily Yugoslav of dubious background.

‘Peter Lasko, later Director of the Courtauld Institute, on duty that day to deal with enquiries from the public, sent a note marked urgent up to Rupert Bruce-Mitford, Keeper of British and Medieval Antiquities, urging him to come and see “what appears to be a two-foot Winchester-style morse [walrus] ivory altar cross carved back and front”. By the summer of 1961 Bruce-Mitford and Lasko, fully equipped with reference books and photographs, had spent four days studying the cross in a Zurich bank vault.

‘Hoving did not get to see it until that autumn and Topic Mimara refused to give him photographs until the summer of 1962. Meanwhile, a panel of experts brought together by the British Museum had concluded, using the photographs Bruce-Mitford and Lasko had obtained, that the cross was “one of the finest and most impressive objects of the twelfth century they [had] ever seen … and should find its resting place in the National Museum”.

‘The museum had to persuade the Treasury to find £195,000, an unprecedented sum then for an artwork that was not a painting. Delaying tactics emerged: some said the cross “was too good to be true” and, because Topic Mimara refused to say where it came from, fears were expressed that it “might be Nazi loot”.

‘The report of the panel and the support of informed people such as Roger Quirk, Under-Secretary in the Department of Education and Science (whose papers and set of the photographs are beside me as I write), laid the first canard to rest, but on the second the Treasury could not be moved. Topic Mimara’s deadline was January 31, 1963. That evening, with the funds agreed, Lasko telephoned Zurich and again asked Topic Mimara to disclose where he had got the cross. He again refused and the British bid failed.

‘How and when this English Romanesque cross came to be in Central Europe or the northern Balkans remains unclear, but no claim to ownership has ever been made. Among those in charge of American museums in the 1970s, it was said that Tom Hoving’s motto was “if it’s available, I want it”. The cross was available and Hoving, untroubled on his own admission by scruple, got it for the Metropolitan Museum.’

Fellow Norman Hammond reminds us that it is almost three years to the day (24 February 2006) since the death of our late Fellow Andrew Sherratt. In his obituary, our Fellow Cyprian Broodbank wrote that ‘Maps and geography were lifeblood to Andrew … and in recent times he was seldom happier than when staring at the peacock colours and awesome detail of the satellite images of the Earth that have been made publicly available by the end of the Cold War. How creative that staring could be is borne out by the annotated images on his ArchAtlas website, a superb, if poignantly unfinished, monument to his remarkable way of understanding the past.’

Today the word ‘unfinished’ no longer applies, as a team of researchers, led by our Fellow Susan Sherratt, has continued to develop the ArchAtlas project at Sheffield University’s Department of Archaeology. In essence, ArchAtlas consists of a series of case studies on archaeological problems and ideas in graphical form — visual essays that integrate satellite images, maps and drawings to illustrate such themes as ancient trade routes or the spread of agriculture. Beware — the site is quite addictive!


Fellow Cherry Lavell writes to share the news that Hadrian’s Wall has just become a new Fairtrade frontier: it is now officially the first World Heritage Site and National Trail to achieve Fairtrade zone status. The Hadrian’s Wall Fairtrade campaign began in October 2008 with the aim of raising the profile of the Fairtrade movement. It has since encouraged numerous businesses along the Hadrian’s Wall corridor to provide the option of Fairtrade products for their customers or staff and visitors.

Further to Mary Beard’s ‘Desert Island Discs’ appearance, in which she said her interest in the past was triggered by a British Museum attendant who opened a display case and showed her some ancient Egyptian bread, our Fellow Jill Cook writes to say that handling tables are in operation in several galleries at the British Museum, staffed by trained volunteers whose purpose is to give visitors the very same experience which so delighted Mary Beard as a child. ‘The items on offer are by no means second rate or replicas’, Jill says. ‘In Room 2, for example, it is currently possible to handle handaxes and a chopping tool found by Louis Leakey in stratified contexts in Olduvai Gorge during his first expedition in 1931. In other galleries there are coins, pots, tiles, enamels and bronzes, all of which are handled without gloves.’ On the subject of gloves, Jill adds that though they are not always strictly necessary when handling inert materials, visitors to the museum occasionally chastise curators and conservators if they see them handling objects without gloves. ‘Members of the public see them as evidence that we value the objects’, Jill says.

Fellow Jeremy Montagu says that the Bate Collection in Oxford has always had a policy of allowing its musical instruments to be used (with considerable discretion for the rarer examples). ‘When I was curator I would always open a case on request and allow an instrument to be played, though I never went quite so far as my predecessor, Anthony Baines, who would grab an instrument and thrust it into the hands of an unwary visitor with the words “play this”. That led to many now eminent members of early instrument orchestras beginning a career; playing also helps in the reconstruction of historic instruments, for you cannot make an instrument unless you know what it is intended to sound like. Often, when an instrument had been made, we would compare it and the original side by side. I was often criticised by conservation-minded colleagues for allowing this, but Philip Bate, our prime donor, gave the collection to the University with the intent that the instruments should be available for use.’

In the last issue of Salon, our Fellow Robert Merrillees asked when and why the ‘diadem’ found in the grave of the Princess of Vix has now been reinterpreted as a torque. Vincent Megaw refers anyone who is interested in the subject to the ‘sumptuous two volumes published by Picard in 2003 for the Société des Amis du Musée du Châtillonnais under the editorship of Claude Rolley with its detailed reconsideration of the original excavation (which took place in the winter of 1952—3) but also a study by Alfred Haffner of the — undoubted — torc, its typology and function … essential reading and still a snip at 98 Euros!’

Naomi Tarrant, who is a Fellow of both societies, writes to point out Salon’s faux pas in describing Lord Monboddo as an FSA(Scot). He was an FSAScot, without the brackets she rightly points out.

Katie Owen of the Heritage Lottery Fund writes to correct the statement in the last Issue of Salon that ‘the diversion of Heritage Lottery Funds into the Olympics’ is partly to blame ‘for a shortage of funds for the museums sector’. Katie writes: ‘the HLF isn’t a revenue funding body so, even though we have less money to distribute, that is obviously not the cause/effect of cuts in local authority revenue’. According to latest estimates, the reduction in HLF funds due to the Olympics is £161.2 million. Potentially £90.2 million could be returned once land in east London is sold after the Olympics. ‘For the foreseeable future, HLF expects to make grants of some £180 million annually, which is less than in former years, but remains a huge investment into the UK’s heritage’, the HLF says.

Meanwhile, Fellow Adrian Webb reports that the latest local authority museum to be facing imminent closure is the North Somerset Museum in Weston-super-Mare. The council plans to sell the museum building, display highlights from the collection in a two-room visitor attraction on the seafront and move the remainder into storage. Heather Morrisey, Chairman of the Friends of North Somerset Museum, says ‘we will no longer have a museum which will have facilities for research, education and conservation nor a place where finds can be safely placed in the future. We would be very grateful if anyone can offer us any advice, help, or support, in any way possible to rectify the situation.’

Further information on the state of affairs at the Cabinet des Médailles, in Paris, can be found on the website of Apollo magazine, where Guy Weill Goudchaux accuses the French Government (and the Bibliothèque Nationale, which has always been in charge of the Cabinet des Médailles) of neglecting France’s oldest museum, starving it of funds and space, because it is ‘deeply unfashionable’. Plans to restrict even further the 540 square metres of exhibition space provided at the rue de Richelieu (reported in the last issue of Salon) have led to the formation of a new organisation — Les Amis du Cabinet des Médailles — which is calling on President Sarkozy ‘to perpetuate his name and the memory of his presidency’ by coming to the rescue of the Cabinet. According to Goudchaux, the eighteenth-century Hôtel de la Marine (also known as the Hôtel du Garde-Meuble) on the Place de la Concorde, the former headquarters of the French navy, would make a perfect new home for the Cabinet. The rest of the article consists of an illustrated description of some of the highlights of the collection.

The same issue of Apollo has an article by our Fellow John Martin Robinson on the buildings of the British Museum, and another by Jane MacLaren Walsh on the true story behind the celebrated Mitchell-Hedges crystal skull, now known not to be Mayan but to be a twentieth-century fake, based on the British Museum’s quartz skull, itself undoubtedly of nineteenth-century date.

Apollo was, of course, under the editorship of our Fellow Michael Hall until recently, and Fellow Philippa Glanville writes to pay tribute to his ‘thoroughly generous and interdisciplinary’ approach to the magazine, to which many Fellows have been contributors in recent years. She also points to his having ‘got the magazine into profit and extended its readership’, all of which begs the question why he was replaced.

Clive Cheesman, Rouge Dragon Pursuivant at the College of Arms in London, has found an unusual but highly appropriate way of contributing to the international relief and recovery effort in Haiti: from now on all the proceeds from the sale of his edited volume, The Armorial of Haiti: symbols of nobility in the reign of Henry Christophe, are to be donated to that cause. The book reproduces an early nineteenth-century manuscript from Haiti recording in colour the arms of Henry Christophe (1767—1820), Haiti’s only king, the queen, the prince royal, their capital city (Cap-Henry, now Cap-Haïtien) and eighty-seven members of the hereditary nobility that Christophe created among his leading men, many of them, like Christophe himself, former slaves. Copies can be bought online through the College website.

Appeals for help

The identity of the Romanesque church featured in Salon 227 was solved in seconds by several readers, and further e-mails continued to trickle in over subsequent days, all saying that Christopher Whittick’s painting depicts the west front of St Lawrence, Castle Rising, Norfolk, before Salvin’s 1845 restoration. Fellow Jonathan Parkhouse added the extra information that a similar view in watercolour by Cotman was included in the catalogue of the English Romanesque Art exhibition at the Hayward Gallery in 1984 and is held by the Ashmolean. Richard Plant supplied the following link to the English Church Architecture website where you can see the same west elevation now restored.

The first of this week’s challenges is to help Caroline Shenton, of the Parliamentary Archives, who is writing a book about the 1834 fire that destroyed the old Palace of Westminster. Caroline would like to hear from anyone who knows the whereabouts of the London Fire Engine Establishment’s celebrated dog, Chance, who for many years ran ahead of the fire brigade’s horse-drawn engine, and whose barking gave advance notice of the imminent arrival of the rescue service. Chance was present at the Westminster fire, and when he died a year later he was stuffed and kept in a glass case in the LFEE headquarters in Watling Street. He was subsequently raffled to raise funds for the widow of a deceased fireman — and such was his renown that the raffle raised the very large sum of £123 10s 9d. Caroline is wondering what happened to him subsequently. Does he still exist in a public collection somewhere, or in private hands? Any information would be gratefully received.

The second request for help comes from our Fellow Robert Key, MP for Salisbury, who hopes that Salon readers can assist in the interpretation of a painted inscription that has recently come to light in Salisbury Cathedral, where Robert is a lay canon. The inscription was discovered when a wall tablet on the cathedral’s south aisle wall was removed for conservation. The wall tablet commemorates Sir Henry Hyde, who was executed in Cornhill, London, on 4 March 1650/1, but whose memorial, praising his Royalist loyalty and mentioning his dealings with the future Charles II, cannot have been erected until after the Restoration of May 1660. The cathedral’s Consultant Archaeologist, Tim Tatton Brown, believes that the inscription could date from a century earlier: ‘the specialists who have looked at this are now leaning towards the text being written in the fifteenth century, a period when English was, for the very first time, being used just occasionally in preference to Latin which was then the norm’.

Tim commissioned our Fellow John Crook to make a photographic record of the inscription prior to the re-attachment of the monument, and John now takes up the story. ‘The inscription was painted on a fairly thin layer of limewash, through which the tooling of the masonry remains visible. In several places the limewash has flaked away, leaving just the residual black stain on the stone itself. Subsequently, the whole inscription was whitewashed over in a rather hard limewash, much of which also fell away. The placing of the wall monument in the 1660s preserved both these limewash layers and the inscription sandwiched between them; the adjacent areas of the wall were, however, subsequently scraped, though still leaving some limewash in the tooling. It is just possible that some further elements of the inscription may be discernible outside the area of the tablet, perhaps with the use of UV light.

‘What has survived beneath the tablet is an area 1120mm wide and about 830mm high down the area of wall damaged by what was presumably part of the intermediate supports to the monument. As well as the inscription, the setting-out marks for the monument are also visible as thin lines of red ochre and incised lines, and there is also a thin, later pencil line traced all around the wall tablet.

‘The surviving part of the inscription comprises six lines of text, but its extent, both vertically and horizontally, cannot at present be determined. I photographed the area of the inscription with a Nikon D3X digital camera using full-spectrum daylight illumination, then enhanced the image in Adobe Photoshop by adjusting the contrast. I have also traced in red, as a separate layer, those parts of the letters that are decipherable, though it must be recognised that this is a subjective process [for the resulting images, see the Society’s website].

‘The top two lines are very indistinct and rather blurred; more may be made out in the lower lines, in particular, line 4 has a sequence of letters that appear to read “and we are c…” (possibly “we are carried”, though the letter forms are problematical). The only occurrence of this string of letters in the King James Bible is Jeremiah 14:9: “thou, O Lord, art in the midst of us, and we are called by thy name’, but if the inscription is pre-Reformation it is highly unlikely to be an English version of a biblical text. Line 4 includes a string starting with what could be a highly embellished capital A, which might be “Alleluia”. Above it is another word that seems to include the letters “gele*e”, which might be a word connected with angel or angelic.’

All further suggestions welcome!


14 to 16 April 2010: IfA Conference, Southport: a reminder that the Early Bird booking deadline is 5 March 2010. Further information from the IfA website.

16 March 2010: Fragmenta Londiniensia Anteiustiniana: the Gregorian Code rediscovered? Fellows interested in learning more about the discovery of parchment fragments dating from around AD 400 recording sections of the otherwise lost Roman law code, the Codex Gregorianus (as reported in Salon 227), can attend this illustrated talk, to be given by Simon Corcoran and Benet Salway at 5.15pm in Room G.09/10 at the UCL History Department, 26 Gordon Square, London WC1. For further background information see the Project Volterra news pages or listen to the AHRC podcast.

22 and 23 April 2010: ‘Fashion, Ritual, Furniture and Textiles: the phenomenon of the state bed’. Jointly chaired by our Fellow Peter Burman and by Christopher Rowell, Furniture Curator with the National Trust, this Hopetoun House Master Class includes sessions on the history and conservation of the Hopetoun State Bed but also considers state beds from Dunham Massey, Sizergh Castle, Newhailes, Dumfries House, Broughton, Houghton, Knole and Hampton Court, as well as examples from royal palaces in the Netherlands and Germany. For a copy of the conference programme and a booking form, contact Peter Burman.

24 and 25 April 2010: Wales and the West during the Bronze Age: Character, Comparison and Contacts, a conference to be held at the National Museum in Cardiff under the auspices of the Royal Archaeological Institute (RAI) in association with National Museum Wales and The Cambrian Archaeological Association. Further details can be had from the RAI.

8 May 2010: New Light in Dark Places: Recent Discoveries and New Directions in Anglo-Saxon Studies, 9.50am to 6.20pm in the Kenneth Clark Lecture Theatre, The Courtauld Institute of Art, Somerset House, Strand, London WC2R 0RN. Bringing together thirteen of the leading scholars in the field (all of them Fellows), this one-day conference will provide a forum for evaluating the current state of research in Anglo-Saxon studies and exploring future research directions. Focusing initially on the Staffordshire Hoard and its wider seventh-century context, the conference will also examine art and architecture throughout the Anglo-Saxon period. For a copy of the programme and booking details see the Courtauld Institute’s website.

Books and exhibitions by Fellows

Anyone who attended the Society’s Christmas Miscellany in December 2008 will remember the entertaining paper by our Fellow Yvette Staelens who talked about her AHRC-funded research following in the footsteps of Cecil Sharp in order to gather further information about the people from whom Sharp collected folk song and dance material in the first two decades of the twentieth century. Yvette has now curated a travelling exhibition on the same theme, called The Singing Landscape: a celebration of Cecil Sharp, featuring some of the riveting photographic portraits that Sharp made as he travelled through the south west of England and mounted in collaboration with Somerset County Museum Service and the English Folk Dance and Song Society. The exhibition opens at the Atrium Gallery, Bournemouth University (4 March to 24 April 2010), then travels to the Bridgwater Arts Centre, Somerset (1 to 28 May 2010), and The Bishop’s Palace, Wells (25 July to 3 September 2010). Yvette will also be performing some of the material that Sharp collected in the region at Bridgwater Art Centre; her concert — ‘The Lost Singers of Somerset and Bridgwater’ starts at 8pm on 20 May 2010.

What would the numerologists who see significant mathematical patterns in the distribution and layout of many archaeological monuments make of the fact that Catherine Johns’ new book — The Hoxne Late Roman Treasure: gold jewellery and silver plate — should have come out in 2010, that the number of individual catalogue entries should happen to total 410 and that catalogue no. 410 is the hammer for which the finder, Mr Lawes, was allegedly searching for when he happened upon this spectacular collection of gold and silver coins, gold jewellery and silver artefacts in November 1992! Not only that, but the book will be on sale at the ‘end of Roman Britain’ AD 410 conference at the British Museum on the weekend of 13 and 14 March, close to the anniversary of the AD 407/8 terminus post quem for the deposition of the treasure (as will Fellow Pete Guest’s companion volume, a full catalogue of the Hoxne coins, published in 2005).

The book catalogues the twenty-nine pieces of gold jewellery, the dozen silver vessels, nearly one-hundred silver spoons and about forty additional silver objects that make up the hoard, along with ivory, bone and wood objects and the iron nails and other fittings that bear witness to the chest that originally contained the treasure.

Catherine says she is enormously relieved that this project has finally come to fruition, so that she can now relax and enjoy the feeling of achievement, as can the many colleagues, most of them Fellows, who have contributed vital specialist sections and chapters to the book (namely Barry Ager, Caroline Cartwright, Michael Cowell, Duncan Hook, Simon Dove, Peter Guest, Susan La Neice, Judith Plouviez and Roger Tomlin).

Fellow Aidan Dodson, of Bristol University’s Department of Archaeology and Anthropology, has just published Amarna Sunset: Nefertiti, Tutankhamun, Ay, Horemheb, and the Egyptian Counter-Reformation (American University in Cairo Press), a book that looks not at the heroic era of Pharaoh Akhenaten’s religious reforms and his attempts to elevate Aten, the Sun, to the position of sole god and to eliminate the worship of myriad traditional gods but rather at the failure of Akhenaten’s religious revolution and the subsequent return to orthodoxy that saw the wholesale obliteration of all things associated with Akhenaten, the removal of his image from monuments and the omission of his name, and that of his immediate successors, from official king-lists.

Controversially, Aiden argues that not only was Nefertiti the mother of Tutankhamun, but that, ruling as joint-Pharaoh in turn with both her husband, Akhenaten, and her son, she was herself instrumental in beginning the return to orthodoxy, undoing her erstwhile husband’s life’s work before her own mysterious disappearance.

Fellow David Dymond is the editor of The Charters of Stanton, Suffolk, c 1215—1678, published by Boydell for the Suffolk Records Society as Suffolk Charters Volume XVIII. The village of Stanton (nine miles north east of Bury St Edmunds) is unusual in having such a large and coherent collection of charters (455 in total), most of which were written for, or involved, local peasants and farmers and illustrate their own dealings with each other and with their lords. The charters are therefore documents of great interest for social and economic history and for the insights they provide into the lives of peasants and village people, into farming and other kinds of economic activity, into the operation of lordship and into the village’s connection with the broader world.

A book that begins ‘Archaeology can be very boring, distressing and physically uncomfortable’ is bound to be lively and readable, and Fellow Matthew Johnson’s second revised edition of his Archaeological Theory: an introduction continues in the same lively vein. As Post–Medieval Archaeology said when the first edition was published, ‘this is a genuinely accessible and lively “route map” to the developments in theory since the “New Archaeology” of the early 1960s … a theoretical textbook that is a pleasure to read’.

Gifts to the Library October to December 2009

The Society is very grateful to the donors of the following books, given to the Library in the period October to December 2009. Full records can be found by consulting the Society’s online catalogue and all these books are now available in the Library.

From the author, Leslie Baker-Jones, Fellow, ‘The wolf and the boar’: the Lloyds of Bronwydd, Cardiganshire and Newport Castle, Pembrokeshire; Lords Marcher of Cemais (2008)
From the author, Peter Barber, Fellow, King Henry VIII’s Map of the British Isles: commentary and facsimile of the King’s Map (2009)
From the author, Jerome Bertram, Fellow, Vita communis: the common life of the secular clergy (2009)
From the author, Alan Bott, Fellow, A Guide to the Parish Church of Saint Mary Chiddingfold, Surrey (2009)
From the co-author, Martin Brown, Fellow, Digging up Plugstreet: the archaeology of a Great War battlefield, by Richard Osgood and Martin Brown (2009)
From the author, Mario Buhagiar, Fellow, Essays on the Knights and Art and Architecture in Malta, 1500—1798 (2009)
From the editor, Anunciación Carrera, Philip Perry’s ‘Sketch of the Ancient British History’: a critical edition, edited by Anunciación Carrera and María José Carrera (2009)
From Ian Caruana, Hadrian’s Wall 1999—2009: a summary of excavation and research prepared for the Thirteenth Pilgrimage of Hadrian’s Wall, 8—14 August 2009, compiled by N Hodgson, FSA (2009)
From Peter Clayton, Fellow, Middle Kingdom Tomb Architecture at Lisht, by Dieter Arnold (2008)
From the author, Susan Craggs, Hilbre Island in Medieval Times: some legends revisited (2009)
From the co-author, Joseph Decaëns, Fellow, Le château de Caen, by Joseph Decaëns and Adrien Dubois (2009)
From Anthony Emery, Fellow, Limbourg Brothers: Nijmegen Masters at the French Court 1400—16 (2005)
From the author, Christopher Evans, Fellow, Fengate Revisited: further fen-edge excavations, Bronze Age field systems and settlement and the Wyman Abbott/Leeds Archives (2009)
From Desmond Fitzpatrick, Fellow, Extracts from the Proceedings of the Society of Antiquaries of London 1795 and 1796, being papers relating to the Tower of London
From the co-author, Negley Harte, Fellow, The World of UCL 1828—2004, by Negley Harte and John North (2004)
From the author, Robert Higham, Fellow, Making Anglo-Saxon Devon: the emergence of a shire (2008)
From the editor, Heather James, Fellow, Carmarthenshire and Beyond: studies in history and archaeology in memory of Terry James, edited by Heather James and Patricia Moore (2009)
From the author, Simon Kaner, Fellow, The Power of Dogu: ceramic figures from Ancient Japan (2009)
From the author, Caroline Knight, Fellow, London’s Country Houses (2009)
From the editors, William Lack and Philip Whittemore, A Series of Monumental Brasses, Indents and Incised Slabs from the Thirteenth Century to the Twentieth Century, Volume 2, Part 5 (2009)
From David Lee, Medieval Woodcarvings of Ripon Cathedral: choir stalls, canopies, ceiling bosses and misericords, by Maurice H Taylor and Derek Ching (2009), and Who Do You Think They Were? The Memorials of Ripon Cathedral, by various contributors (2008)
From the author, Grace McCombie, Fellow, Pevsner Architectural Guides: Newcastle and Gateshead (2009)
From the joint editor, David Mason, Fellow, Frontiers of Knowledge: a research framework for Hadrian’s Wall, edited by Matthew Symonds and David Mason (2009)
From Gwyn Meirion-Jones, Fellow, Les vitraux de la Cathédrale Saint-Corentin de Quimper, edited by Tanguy Daniel (2005), and Les vitraux de Basse-Normandie, by Martine Callias Bey and Véronique David (2006)
From William Moss, Fellow, Les battures du Saint-Laurent aux XVIIe et XVIIIe siècles: un dépotoir à ciel ouvert?, by Céline Cloutier, edited by William Moss (2006)
From Brendan O’Connor, Fellow, La Montagne, l’Ermíte at le Montagnard (2002)
From the author, Timothy Schroder, Fellow, British and Continental Gold and Silver in the Ashmolean Museum (2009)
From the author, David Sullivan, The Westminster Circle: the people who lived and worked in the early town of Westminster, 1066—1307 (2006)
From Peter Yeoman, Fellow, ‘Clothing for the soul divine’: burials at the tomb of St Ninian; excavations at Whithorn Priory 1957—67, by Christopher Lowe (2009)


University of Glasgow: Director of the Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery; closing date 5 March 2010
For further details see the Glasgow University website.

Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre, Chippenham: County Conservation and Museums Manager; salary £36,313 to £38,961; closing date 9 April 2010
For further details see the Wiltshire Council website.

Six new EPPIC posts; £16,049 fixed term for 12 months; closing date 12 March 2010
Six one-year professional work placements for 2010/11 are now available under the English Heritage Professional Placements in Conservation (EPPIC) scheme. These placements will provide work-based learning opportunities in Aerial Survey, Archaeological Survey and Investigation, Archaeological Science, Zooarchaeology, Architectural Graphics (Survey of London) and Finds (hosted by Wessex Archaeology). The placements are designed for those with some experience of historic environment practice, but who have not yet had the opportunity to develop more specialist skills and competencies. Further details can be downloaded from the IfA website.

The National Museum of the Royal Navy: Board of Trustees; closing date 22 March 2010
The Board of Trustees of the National Museum of the Royal Navy is seeking to appoint new Trustees with effect from 28 April 2010. Applicants should have a demonstrable interest in the Royal Navy, its Arms of Service and its Auxiliaries and an awareness of the contemporary role of a National Museum. Experience in the disciplines of Human Resources, the Law, Academia (Naval History) and Fundraising is desirable. Requests for an application form and further details should be made by e-mail to Emma Nash. If you intend to nominate someone other than yourself, please state this when requesting an application form.

Bristol Cathedral, Cathedral Archaeologist; closing date 26 March 2010
The Dean and Chapter of Bristol Cathedral are seeking an archaeologist to succeed our Fellow Warwick Rodwell and to take up the post in May 2010. The post is remunerated at £50 per hour, with a core requirement of five days per year to cover attendance at Fabric Advisory Committee meetings, internal consultations and initial discussions of projects and minor works of observation and recording, with extra project work as required. For further details, e-mail the Keeper of the Fabric, Canon Andrew Tremlett.

CBA Challenge Funding

Through its Challenge Funding scheme, the Council for British Archaeology offers grants of up to £750 to support new or existing research projects carried out by groups, societies and individuals working in a voluntary capacity or promoting voluntary involvement. Proposals for projects are invited that will: say something new about the history of local surroundings and thus inform their future care and appreciation; contribute to archaeological innovation (new or under-studied aspects of the historic environment, or new methods, techniques and approaches); or help non-government bodies to establish long-term resources or facilities to enable others to carry out their own original research. Further details of how to apply are available from the CBA website and the deadline is 31 March 2010.