Keep on digging…

St Luig to Barflat Field

Parking at the Old Churchyard at St Luig’s, the pathway runs from Manse Road to the Moss Woods alongside Barflats. This is the view from the North East towards Barflats Field where Mollie and Leonie were digging earlier in the week.

Archaeologists have found two other Pictish stones in this field – The Craw Stane (which is not that difficult to miss) and Rhynie Stone 8 found a month after I was in 1978.  Eight symbol stones (so far) have been found in Rhynie, a ‘Very Royal Place.’

In a week of test pitting, by Thursday decisions are being made on what needs to be looked at more closely. Two of the test pits have been backfilled after records and images were taken. The dig now focussed on the East test pit Lindsey and Jordon started earlier in the week and plans were being made to dig an additional test pit to the south which showed up some interesting readings on Oskar’s Geophysics report.

test pit in barflats field

You have to dig really deeply to find anything in the Barflats field.  This pit was around one meter deep by three meters long.

East Test Pit Barflats FieldLindsey working hard to find out whether the test pit shows anything interesting.  Oscar described it as a Cairn, this is the term used for anything from  ‘a pile of stones’ to something much more interesting.  The stones sat below the ploughed line, where ground has been disturbed over the past 1500 years, in a rough arc.  The pit was dug across the feature as a way of determining whether this would be an interesting place to investigate further in the summer.

cairn evidence removed from trench

Some of the stones removed by (mainly) Lindsey and Oscar from the cairn, as a first year Lindsey was on a steep learning curve learning about the skills of an archaeologist, Rhynie Woman cakes, tools such as the different types of archaeological trowel and the ultra technical approach – give it a bit of welly!

mini Rhynie Man stone?

It’s amazing to think that the last time someone touched these stones Scotland possibly didn’t exist as a unified country!   The shape of this stone reminds me of something….A mini Rhynie Man.

The digging continues on Friday and we look forward to seeing all the archaeologists back in September – lets hope for good weather and lots of interesting finds.  For more information on the dig please get in touch via Aberdeen University Archaeology Department.  We’ll be looking for volunteers and of course Rhynie Woman will be there to fill us all with cake and creativity.  Full plans and a pop up information stand will be at the Rhynie community gala on the 15th August 2015.  See you there…..

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Keep on digging…

If you go down to the woods today….

tap o noth and craw stane

If you go down to the woods today…..well the Craw Stane field, you’ll find some busy diggers. Aberdeen University are doing some test pitting all week.  Pop in past and catch up with the team, they said they were back for some surveying, but we think they just like coming back for the cakes and good Rhynie company!

Leonie and Molly

Third year students, Loenie and Molly, from Aberdeen University starting a test pit near the graveyard. The Geophysics survey picked up a possible rectangular structure across the middle of this pit running roughly north to south.

St Luig test pit

This is the view towards the Old Cemetery and the north and east test pits, I wonder what will be found!

Lindsey and Jorden
what comes out must go back in!

Lindsey from first year and Jorden from third, digging the south test pit. What comes out bust go back in, in a weeks time you wont know they have been there.  There is fierce competition between the dig teams to see who can make the best test pit and find the oldest artefact!

finds from east test pit
Oskar showing us how it’s done.
signs of worms or roots!?

Some of the finds from the east test pit; old beer bottle, glass, various ceramics from different time points and some charcoal. The flint is beautiful and has signs that it has been worked on, it looks almost purple with the red bucket behind it.

Oskar, leads the dig. He is still digging up ploughed soil and was down to about 70cm!  what do you think he found here? in the west test pit possible answer in the photograph caption.

craw stane from the west pit
Rhynie Woman goodies
menu for a dig

The craw stane is like the Mona Lisa, it follows you around the field no matter where you stand, this time from the Oskar’s test pit

Time for a cuppa, and some seasonal cakes for the diggers provided by the talented and amazing Rhynie Woman, she knows her way to an old stone’s heart! Seasonal goodies – cicely, field sorrel, rhubarb, spearmint, lovage, gorse.

gorse sunshine

Sadly it was another overcast day in the North East, but the bonus is that we get sunshine in other ways.  It’s been a bit drizzly and windy, so wrap up warm if you’re heading over to see the dig.

Archaeology tools
metre stick
If you go down to the woods today….