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Between The Wind And The Water

Author: Caroline Wickham-Jones
Publisher:
ISBN: 9781909686502
Size: 15.31 MB
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Caroline Wickham-Jones provides a highly readable and informative overview of Orkney's archaeological heritage, illustrated with beautiful photography.

The Development Of Neolithic House Societies In Orkney

Author: Colin Richards
Publisher: Windgather Press
ISBN: 1909686921
Size: 56.88 MB
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Considering that Orkney is a group of relatively small islands lying off the northeast coast of the Scottish mainland, its wealth of Neolithic archaeology is truly extraordinary. An assortment of houses, chambered cairns, stone circles, standing stones and passage graves provides an unusually comprehensive range of archaeological and architectural contexts. Yet, in the early 1990s, there was a noticeable imbalance between 4th and 3rd millennium cal BC evidence, with house structures, and ‘villages’ being well represented in the latter but minimally in the former. As elsewhere in the British Isles, the archaeological visibility of the 4th millennium cal BC in Orkney tends to be dominated by the monumental presence of chambered cairns or tombs. In the 1970s Claude Lévi-Strauss conceived of a form of social organization based upon the ‘house’ – sociétés à maisons – in order to provide a classification for social groups that appeared not to conform to established anthropological kinship structures. In this approach, the anchor point is the ‘house’, understood as a conceptual resource that is a consequence of a strategy of constructing and legitimizing identities under ever shifting social conditions. Drawing on the results of an extensive program of fieldwork in the Bay of Firth, Mainland Orkney, the text explores the idea that the physical appearance of the house is a potent resource for materializing the dichotomous alliance and descent principles apparent in the archaeological evidence for the early and later Neolithic of Orkney. It argues that some of the insights made by Lévi-Strauss in his basic formulation of sociétés à maisons are extremely relevant to interpreting the archaeological evidence and providing the parameters for a ‘social’ narrative of the material changes occurring in Orkney between the 4th and 2nd millennia cal BC. The major excavations undertaken during the Cuween-Wideford Landscape Project provided an unprecedented depth and variety of evidence for Neolithic occupation, bridging the gap between domestic and ceremonial architecture and form, exploring the transition from wood to stone and relationships between the living and the dead and the role of material culture. The results are described and discussed in detail here, enabling tracing of the development and fragmentation of sociétés à maisons over a 1500 year period of Northern Isles prehistory.

Knowledge And Power In Prehistoric Societies

Author: Lynne Kelly
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1316368475
Size: 39.62 MB
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In this book, Lynne Kelly explores the role of formal knowledge systems in small-scale oral cultures in both historic and archaeological contexts. In the first part, she examines knowledge systems within historically recorded oral cultures, showing how the link between power and the control of knowledge is established. Analyzing the material mnemonic devices used by documented oral cultures, she demonstrates how early societies maintained a vast corpus of pragmatic information concerning animal behavior, plant properties, navigation, astronomy, genealogies, laws and trade agreements, among other matters. In the second part Kelly turns to the archaeological record of three sites, Chaco Canyon, Poverty Point and Stonehenge, offering new insights into the purpose of the monuments and associated decorated objects. This book demonstrates how an understanding of rational intellect, pragmatic knowledge and mnemonic technologies in prehistoric societies offers a new tool for analysis of monumental structures built by non-literate cultures.

Pagan Britain

Author: Ronald Hutton
Publisher: Yale University Press
ISBN: 0300197713
Size: 62.20 MB
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DIVBritain's pagan past, with its mysterious monuments, atmospheric sites, enigmatic artifacts, bloodthirsty legends, and cryptic inscriptions, is both enthralling and perplexing to a resident of the twenty-first century. In this ambitious and thoroughly up-to-date book, Ronald Hutton reveals the long development, rapid suppression, and enduring cultural significance of paganism, from the Paleolithic Era to the coming of Christianity. He draws on an array of recently discovered evidence and shows how new findings have radically transformed understandings of belief and ritual in Britain before the arrival of organized religion. Setting forth a chronological narrative, Hutton along the way makes side visits to explore specific locations of ancient pagan activity. He includes the well-known sacred sites—Stonehenge, Avebury, Seahenge, Maiden Castle, Anglesey—as well as more obscure locations across the mainland and coastal islands. In tireless pursuit of the elusive “why” of pagan behavior, Hutton astonishes with the breadth of his understanding of Britain’s deep past and inspires with the originality of his insights./div

Orkney Folk Tales

Author: Tom Muir
Publisher: The History Press
ISBN: 0750955333
Size: 66.97 MB
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Tom Muir takes you on a magical journey through the mysterious Orkney Islands, where the past and present meet. Using the ancient stories that were told by the firesides of the Picts and Vikings, we hear how the islands were created from the teeth of a monster, how a giant created lochs and hills in his greed for fertile land, and how the waves are controlled by the hand of a goddess. Here ancient standing stones walk and burial mounds are the home of the trows. Invisible islands are encountered, home to fin folk and mermaids, while seals are not always what they seem to be. Witches raise storms and predict the outcome of a battle, ghosts seek revenge, and the devil sits in the rafters of St Magnus Cathedral, taking notes!

Orkney

Author: Amy Sackville
Publisher: Catapult
ISBN: 1619022087
Size: 34.32 MB
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Following her wonderful debut, The Still Point, Sackville returns with a strangely beautiful short novel about love and sex and obsession. A literature professor marries his prize student, a woman forty years his junior, and at her request he takes her to the say for their honeymoon. He is embarked on his lifes work, a book about enchantment-narratives in literature, most all of them involving strange girls and women, but soon finds himself distracted by his own enchantment for his new white-haired young wife. They travel to the Orkney Islands, the ancient Mesolithic and Neolithic site north of the Scottish coast, “the Seal Islands, a barren place of extraordinary beauty. And as the days of their honeymoon pass his desire and his constant, yearning contemplation become his normality. His mysterious bride becomes his entire universe. He is consumed.

The New History Of Orkney

Author: William P. L. Thomson
Publisher: Birlinn Limited
ISBN:
Size: 45.18 MB
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From the pre-history period, producing unrivalled monuments and the first appearance of Orkney as the Orchades of classical writers, this work traces 600 years of Scandinavian rule and the 500 year association of the islands with Scotland.