We of course excavated pit 42 and found the latest of the ritual pits the Goat pit which is on the home page for you to look at with an I tube link. We continued to excavate area H and found what might be a hearth for some sort of metal working process but we will have to wait until next year to find out in detail what it is.
We will be putting up more pictures of the build during the winter for you to see and we are going to have a party however finished we are on the anniversary of the day we started the build in mid January.
On Monday we went back to the area of the feather pits on the main site area N. It was extremely hot this week and we were grateful that that part of the site is in shade from 11am onwards. We found what looks like the top of another pit too. I decided we should have a look in one of the pits not excavated in the next trench from last year. After taking off the mixed clay top Rachel dug down not more than 10 cm before she came to a solid layer of clay. Just in case it was not the bottom of the pit she took 5 cm of the clay base out and found nothing but more clay. So it looks like this pit was cut to a depth of 10 cm and then abandoned. In pits that have been empty before there has always been a few feathers or small stones or quills in its base indicating it had once been filled and then was emptied. This pit though was a first as it did not seem to have been filled at all. However we have saved all the fill in bags and will wet sieve it just in case we missed anything in the excavation process. We found a cluster of pit tops in the trench and next week weather permitting we will continue to open this area and see if we can find more pit tops.
It was then dry enough to go down onto the clay platform so we
did not go back to H which we can dig on wet days.
We did not get to dig down there last year
much at all as it was just too wet and
what platform we revealed had no
pits in it either. I was beginning to think we had come to the
end of the pits. However Saveock has not finished surprising us
because in the small area we excavated we have found three pits
already! So I am going to open up the area more next week and
see the pattern of pits before I take a look inside one of them.
I really have no idea what we will find as we now have not just
feather pits but cat, dog and pig pits. One thing I am quite
confident about is that they
will be different from the other
pits we have excavated to date because of the 48 of them none
are the same. I was cleaning the area near the pits on my own on
Friday and found another pit under the corner of last year’s
trench that was not finished due to the wet weather. So that
makes four new pits in a very small area.
The weather was great for the rest of the week and the clay platform had dried out well so I decided to take out area H on the main site. This area had a test pit done in it in 2002 which seemed to show nothing but fill, so I decided it would be good to take out the whole area and finally see what is going on there. It was harder going than we thought though as the soil was very compacted and there seemed just under the surface to be two or three different floors. As they were just under the turf they were probably part of a cobbled yard that was next to the mill house. The mill and the mill house were abandoned in the 1850’s when the railway cut through this valley so the floor must date to prior 1850. The weather was hot enough to do some wet sieving for the first time this year too from the pit cleanings last season and we found some more dog claws and a bone from pit 35.
A week after the dig week I had to go to