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YORKSHIRE ARCHAEOLOGICAL JOURNAL

Volume 69 (1997)
CONTENTS

 

Pule Bents: A Possible Kill Site In The Central Pennines by P.B. Stonehouse

The Site was discovered by Dr R. Jacobi in 1983, when he found 16 “rod” microliths along the line of a sheep track on the moor known as Pule Bents near Pule Hill, Marsden, West Yorkshire. Subsequent excavation showed that the site was at an altitude of 1200 feet (366 metres). The excavation was carried out by trowelling by Dr. Jacobi and a team of students from Lancaster University, aided by volunteers from Saddleworth Historical Society. The results are reported here.

 

The Knapton Generating Station And Gas Pipeline Excavations by J. Lee

Archaeological excavations were undertaken at East Knapton in the Vale of Pickering on the site of a generating station and access road in 1993 and continued, the following year, along the length of an 18km gas pipeline corridor which linked it to five well sites. Six archaeological sites were identified and recorded within the area of the development including a previously unknown Romano-British enclosed settlement at the extreme eastern end of the corridor. The settlement comprised at least two roundhouses within a rectilinear ditched enclosure. On their abandonment the structures appear to have been incorporated into the system of field boundaries recorded to the east of the roundhouses. From the evidence of stream channels and canalised field boundaries it is likely that the settlement area was abandoned as a result of extremely waterlogged conditions which rendered settlement difficult in the low ground levels of the Vale bottom. Elsewhere along the length of the gas pipeline corridor field boundaries, trackways, an undated structure and pits provided evidence for activity within the western area of the Vale. The field boundaries dated from the late prehistoric to medieval periods and tended to cluster on the areas of better-drained post-glacial sand and gravel deposits rather than areas of alluvium or glaciolacustrine clay. It is considered that most settlement within the area was on higher ground skirting the Vale. This report discusses the settlement and principal ditch groups against a background of wider archaeological work undertaken within the Vale.

 

Recent Romano-British Metal Detector Finds In The Sheffield And Rotherham Museum Collections And Rural Settlement Patterns In South Yorkshire by M.J. Dearne & J. Parsons

Despite the archaeological investigations at the major Romano-British sites of South Yorkshire and North Derbyshire, such as Templeborough (1922), Rossington Bridge, Doncaster (1986) and Chesterfield (1989), few assemblages from rural sites have been published to provide a comparison in terms of dating, prosperity and possible socio-economic links. There seems to be a clear need to assess the relationship between the major urban and military sites of South Yorkshire, and their farming hinterland.

With the comparative lack of systematically investigated rural sites, especially south of the river Don, the importance of clusters of surface finds becomes paramount in trying to illuminate settlement patterns. Examination of casual finds, especially those recovered by metal detectorists, can offer an important opportunity for research.

In the 1980s two detectorists, Mr J. Rickett and Mr J. Walton, presented a substantial and important collection of artefacts to the City Museum, Sheffield and Clifton Park Museum, Rotherham. The collectors of the material kept accurate records of find spots and also retained some of the non-metallic objects associated with the finds. The recovered material consists mostly of Romano-British copper-alloy small finds with which this paper deals, although it should be noted that they also found artefacts from other periods in similar areas.

 

A Stone Axe-Hammer, Robin Hood's Penny Stone And Stone Circle At Wainstalls, Warley Near Halifax, West Yorkshire by R.A. Varley

A stone axe-hammer found at Robin Hood’s Penny Stone, Wainstalls, near Halifax, West Yorkshire, wasconsidered lost. In the mid-1990s it was located in the archaeological collection from the Bankfield Museum, Halifax. The axe-hammer now forms part of the prehistoric, archaeological collection of Calderdale housed at the Tolson Memorial Museum, Huddersfield. However, very little is known about the circumstances of its discovery or subsequent history. The first published reference for this stone axe-hammer appears in Ling Roth’s The Yorkshire Coiners 1906 where it is illustrated and recorded as a ‘Hammerhead found at Robin Hood’s Penny Stone, Warley’. Bankfield Museum’s early accession register confirms Ling Roth’s caption for the axe, but relates Robin Hood’s Penny Stone as a druidical remain and verifies the find date of 1872. This article examines what is known about the axe-hammer.

 

Anglo-Saxon Sundials In Ryedale by J. Wall

Some thirty eight Anglo-Saxon sundials have so far been identified in England, the majority (twenty four) in the north. Of these no less than fourteen are located in Yorkshire, nine of them in Ryedale District – a remarkable proportion. Again, of the important group of seven Anglo-Saxon sundials with inscriptions nationwide, no less than four are located in Ryedale. In this context the term ‘Anglo-Saxon’ requires some qualification. During this period Viking colonials from Ireland settled in north Yorkshire, where it is possible that they constituted a ruling elite, but still subject to Anglian influences. In consequence some sculptured stones from this period, including sundials, may properly be described as Anglo-Scandinavian. It is this circumstance which accounts for words with Scandinavian roots occurring in otherwise Old English inscriptions, such as those which accompany the most important of the Ryedale group of Anglo-Saxon sundials, the subject of this paper.

 

Excavations In Deanery Gardens And Low St Agnesgate, Ripon, North Yorkshire by M. Whyman

The market town of Ripon is familiar to historians and archaeologists as the site of a major seventh century monastery, founded by St Wilfrid following a grant of land by Alhfrith of Deira c. 660; the crypt under Ripon cathedral is a famous survival of Wilfrid’s church, constructed in c.671-8. Knowledge of the later pre-Conquest history of Wilfrid’s foundation is episodic, but by the Norman Conquest it had developed into a college of secular canons. As one of the four principal churches in the Diocese of York, it continued throughout the Middle Ages as an ecclesiastical peculiar, within a corresponding secular liberty, under the direct control of the Archbishop of York. The first Dean was appointed in 1604, and the college became a cathedral in 1836.

In spite of its early historic associations, and the attentions of 19th-century antiquarians, Ripon has seen little archaeological research in the course of the twentieth century. The author considers the work that has been undertaken.

 

York As A Tidal Port By C. Briden

Almost a generation of York archaeologists has been puzzled by the discovery that Roman waterside structures in the bottoms of their trenches lie below the Mean Summer Level of the River Ouse. Interesting explanations for this phenomenon have appeared in print such as: the river has moved; the river was wider and shallower; things have changed since those days. In fact the immediate explanation is more prosaic. In 1757 the construction of Naburn weir fixed Mean Summer Level at 4.44m OD; this was raised in 1835 to 4.90m OD and again, in 1876, to 5.0m OD; at which level it now remains. The construction of the weir, prompted by a chronic lack of water in the upper Ouse, has had the effect of isolating the City from the tidal regime of the lower sections of the river. This paper is an attempt to reconstruct that regime as it existed in York until the eighteenth century and, more importantly, to establish a set of tidal constants which can be applied to the analysis of waterfront deposits.

Tidal factors were of the utmost importance to the commercial life of the City. Such is the strength of the tides in the lower Ouse that in the days before steam, at any one point on the river, at any one time, a boatman had but two options: to go with the flow, so to speak, or to wait for the turn of the tide; and, as any York-based voyager who has sat out a nine-and-a-half hour ebb at Selby will know, waiting can be a tedious business.

 

Privy Council And 'Vagarant Runagate' Priests In Elizabethan York by P.V. Thomas

In 1583 a document intended “for maintenance of publique and Christian Peace, against certeine stirrers of sedition”, described in colourful language the seminary and Jesuit priests who entered England as the vanguard of the Counter Reformation:

They were people who did not conform to the stereotype of vagrants who ventured to London and the provincial towns in the sixteenth century, begged in the streets and outside people’s houses, dossed on pavements, slept in church porches and barns, squatted in slum tenements, or loitered at alehouses, ‘tippling’ houses and playhouses. Thanks to pioneering research at the beginning of the twentieth century and later, we know more about the poor, underemployed, uneducated and jobless sectors of Tudor and early Stuart society. However, although scholars have provided great insights into this important aspect of early modern society, the writer is more interested in those ‘rogues and vagabonds’ who were well-travelled, educated, articulate and therefore had the means and reason to spread disorder and possible treason – namely, the seminary and Jesuit priests.This article examines the role and actions of Elizabeth I’s Privy Council in suppressing these roaming missionaries in and around Elizabethan York.

 

Thomas Browne, William Wright And The Slingsby Monuments At Knaresborough by A. White

The Slingsby family of Scriven Park, Knaresborough and the Red House, Moor Monkton, North Yorkshire, is commemorated by a group of monuments in the parish church of St John the Baptist, Knaresborough. They are in a chapel on the north side of the building which was appropriated by the family to house them, having served in the Middle Ages as a chantry dedicated to St Mary Magdalene, and later as a Lady Chapel. The series of memorials erected there in the early seventeenth century is among the most interesting of its date in Yorkshire and, indeed, in England on account of the range of style and iconography displayed in it and the exceptional amount of relevant contemporary documentation which survives. Most of this material is in the YAHS’s archives and a small proportion of it was published in the YAJ 1947 by W. A. Atkinson, a little more information being added by G R Smith in his biography of Sir Henry Slingsby the Younger, the famous Royalist, in 1968. It is the purpose of this article to enlarge substantially on what they wrote.

 

Dewsbury Inclosure 1796 - 1806 by J.F. Broadbent

At the end of the eighteenth century Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, was still a small place, even though it was the principal town of the area, and had a market and a church. Most people lived either in Daw Green or in the area around the Market Place, with only scattered housing at Spinkwell, Batley Carr, and around Dewsbury Moor.

Within the Township there were two manors. Dewsbury Moor fell within the Manor of Wakefield, whose Lord was George William Frederick Osborne, 6th Duke of Leeds (from 1799). The Town itself, from the river up to Batley Carr, comprised the Manor, Rectory, or Rectory-Manor of Dewsbury, of which John Carr, the architect, was Lord (from 1799, by purchase).

The population was increasing rapidly. In 1793 it was almost 1050, but by 1801 it had grown to over 4500. Poverty was widespread, and large sums were expended by the Overseers of the Poor by way of relief.

The way of life of the township was still largely rural, but was beginning to change on account of the growth of the woollen trade. While many of the farmers were also involved in that trade, its main labour force was provided by incomers, including many Irish. This influx caused a housing problem, and occasioned the conversion of outbuildings into cottages, and also the erection of a variety of dwellings upon the Wastes. These new buildings were part of the reason for seeking enclosure of the Commons, in a bid to control erection of new dwellings. This article considers these changes and some of their consequences.

 

A Note On The Font Figure In All Saints' Church, Aston, South Yorkshire (SK 4685) by F. Bottomley

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