Author: Caitin McCall

Caitlin studied archaeology at the Institute of Archaeology, UCL, and, on graduating, went into journalism. After years of writing, travelling, and playing, she was delighted to join CWA, where she can combine all three activities with her enduring enthusiasm for archaeology.

Neil Faulkner thinks aloud: What is the meaning of movement (part 1)

It is one of the most obvious observations we are routinely required to make. We uncover an artefact: say a fragment of Mycenaean pot on a Late Bronze Age site in Sicily. So we have evidence of ‘trade’. No, we don’t. Trade is an economic process (exchange) and a social relationship (between buyer and seller). And, in this instance, […]

Chris Catling comments on… Folk Tales, Sleep, and Protecting Antiquities

Some of our favourite ‘fairy stories’ go back to the Bronze Age, if not before, according to the authors of a paper published in the Royal Society Open Science journal. Sara Graça da Silva and Jamshid J Tehrani wanted to test the hypothesis that the ‘canonical’ folk tales of different cultures might have had a common origin among speakers of proto-Indo-European, and […]

New light the Byzantine Dark Ages

  Sean Kingsley explores a long-needed audit of the Byzantine world that uses archaeology to ask big questions about the end of antiquity and the rise of the medieval Mediterranean. The Dark Ages conjures up images of an end of days – barbarian hordes ransacking Rome, Vikings storming across the North Sea, and medieval villages spluttering their way through […]

Later Prehistory featured

The Later Prehistory of North-West Europe by Richard Bradley, Colin Haselgrove, Marc Vander Linden, and Leo Webley

This publication reassesses long-established assumptions and narratives within the prehistoric archaeology of north-west Europe. Focusing on elements such as settlement patterning and the enigmatic processes behind the adoption of agricultural subsistence strategies, the authors draw on datasets from the largely untapped resources of commercial sector grey (unpublished or unavailable) literature to construct a more holistic understanding of the period between […]

Sons of the Sun featured

Sons of the Sun: rise and decline of the Fifth Dynasty by Miroslav Verner

This well-researched study explores the complicated history of the royal line of Egypt’s Fifth Dynasty. Using extensive archaeological and textual evidence, as well as current theoretical opinion, Verner examines the political instability at the end of the Fourth Dynasty, the questions surrounding the lineage of the Fifth Dynasty kings, the dynamic changes that occurred throughout the period of the […]

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In Search of Kings and Conquerors: Gertrude Bell and the archaeology of the Middle East by Lisa Cooper

Bell’s archaeological career is often overshadowed by tales of her privileged upbringing, unhappy love life, political involvements, and untimely death. The first woman to receive a ‘First’ from Oxford, she proved herself to be an astute and highly accomplished archaeologist, particularly in Anatolia and Mesopotamia (where she discovered the magnificent fortress at Ukhaidir), but rarely received the level of recognition enjoyed […]

The Med in history featured

The Mediterranean in History by David Abulafia (ed.)

Nine chapters, each by a different authority, tackle succeeding eras from early prehistory more than 3,000 years ago to the ‘globalized Mediterranean’ of the 21st century – though it ends just before the sad plight of refugees who risk their lives on these dangerous waters today. Each section is deftly stitched together and commented on by the editor, who concludes with his own […]

Death rituals featured

Death Rituals, Social Order and the Archaeology of Immortality in the Ancient World, by Colin Renfrew, Michael J Boyd, and Iain Morley (eds)

Bookended by Man Booker Prize winner Ben Okri, this collection begins with his poem, concludes with his essay, includes a reference to Damien Hirst’s pickled shark The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living, and follows a conference called Death shall have no dominion, the title of a Dylan Thomas poem. Such literary and artistic references are apt: this […]

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Germanicia Mosaics

Aysegul Gurgezoglu Tuzun visits Kahramanmaraş Archaeological Museum in Turkey  Germanicia, beneath the modern city of Kahramanmaraş in southern Turkey, played host to many civilisations during a long and illustrious lifetime that stretches back to the Stone Age. Hittites, Urartians, Assyrians, Persians, Macedonians, and Seleucan kings have all ruled here, each conquering and renaming this important city, […]

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Abruzzo & Molise: Oliver Gilkes goes in search of the Samnites

Late in the year the streets of modern Rome are visited by groups of strangely dressed men with soft felt hats and the impressive, not to say alarming, bagpipes (zampogna) traditionally associated with the shepherds of the Abruzzo and Molise. Made of the inflated skins of sheep, their thin, reedy sound accompanies the disparate groups […]

Feature Image Lampedusa

Richard Hodges travels to … The Island of Lampedusa, Italy

Flying south of Agrigento, the blue begins, even on All Saints’ Day. An Ionian light, it is the ravishing glory of the Middle Sea. I went to Lampedusa in the footsteps of Pope Francis and political grandees, conscious that this minuscule Italian outpost had borne a heavy burden as it grappled with the lives and accursed deaths of […]

Featured Image Mexico City

48 Hours in Mexico City: what to do and where to go

Home to over 21 million people, Mexico City is a glorious, sprawling, beautiful, and endlessly captivating capital. As the city with the largest number of museums in the world, it is packed with archaeological and architectural treasures that showcase an astounding cultural history. In 1519, Spanish Conquistador Hernán Cortés arrived in the region and witnessed […]

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