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STAVNSAGER, DENMARK
August 2005
The site is north of Aarhus, on the east side of the Jutland peninsula

Aarhus is the second-largest city in Denmark. The site is located southeast of Randers near the town of Mosekær
The areas of interest are identified on the map below as a series of colored dots
to the lower left of Mosekær.

An aerial view of the site with the areas being excavated marked. Mosekær is the collection of buildings directly under the propeller. No. 2 is the smaller of the two sites discussed below, near the crest of a hill. No. 1 is the large site discussed at the end of this page.

Note: For some context (i.e., what are they looking for?), go to the end of this file.
1. Friday, Aug. 5. Opening the trench at Site No. 2 (Pina, Dom, Allen, Ed)
2. Progress, and troweling back (Pina, Dom, Gareth, Chris). Chris is standing on the spot that would prove to hold the "feature"
3. The darker area of the "feature" is just visible here in front of and around Chris.

4. Sunday, Aug. 7. Excavation of the "feature" (very dark area, upper left) has begun (Chris, Dom)

5. Next step: the trench is extended to the south, revealing much more of the feature (arrow to north)
6. The darker area of the "feature" is fully visible here, with the south side sloping up to the upper level.
7. Excavation of the "feature" reveals the first post hole.
8. The post hole seen from the east looking west, with the unexcavated half showing dark, and then seen from the north looking south, showing the dark unexcavated area. This is admittedly a much-photographed post hole.

9. Monday, Aug. 8. Taping the excavation for drawing.& drawing (Allen, Yoshi, Ed, Gareth)

10. The lower site, No. 1 on the map above and the large site, excavated by machine Monday, Aug. 9 (Karen Nielsen and Dom)
11. Visible here: a row of post holes (starting lower-left corner and moving slightly up and to the right) and a dark pit at the back.

12. Pictures from weeks two and three (with thanks to Chris):

Evidence of three long-houses aligned along a "street" with an an area of metalworking (probably 6th to 7th century). Contemporary with this: a large Grubenhaus with some mid- to late 6th-century evidence in its demolition fill, along with fragments (probably 8th to 9th century). Textile spinning evidence also found.

13. Some of the 400+ objects found in 2004:

Domestic arrangements at the summer house
Kris and Pina.     Below, right: Mikey, the farmers' dog
Gareth, Immy, Chris
Pina, Kris, Ed, Dom, Vir, Immy
Looking at the farmers' rich collection of finds from the site (Dom, Vir, Pina, Ed)

Here are two pictures from the Parabow website to give you an idea of what kinds of things (besides high-status objects like those above) archaeologists are looking for on digs like this one. Parabow (Preservation and Reconstruction of Ancient Buildings of Wood) involves partners from eight European countries; see the Parabow homepage for more. Remember that these images from the Parabow website are not from the site in Denmark shown above.

1. The excavation of a long house looks like this: dark earth shows where there was a pit, post holes, etc..

2. This is a reconstruction based on the excavated area. The posts from such structured have long since disappeared but can be detected from the contrast between the soil used to fill post holes and the surrounding soil.

3. This reconstruction of a building in Chalton, Hampshire, shows posts set into continuous trenches and walls made of wattle.
The superstructure is conjectural. Source: Addyman, fig. 10, p. 305.

September 3, 2005