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Oil lamps galore

Alan got star find of the day first thing this morning with this lovely little red sandstone oil lamp:

Strictly speaking he was just the lucky person asked to lift it, as we'd known it was there for a while, tucked in at the edge of the setting for one of our many hearths in the subdivided roundhouse, no radiocarbon dates yet for this but probably around the Middle Iron Age, so been happily sitting there for about the last 2,000 years:

Alan's reward is that he'll now have to draw it, since he's also the site illustrator among his many talents.

The day got off to a soggy start with lots of not-rain sweeping in despite the Met Office rain radar insisting that it was dry. Over in Trench F the wet made the task of cleaning up onto a rough cobbled surface all the more irritating as the already claggy surfaces clagged up even further:

The morning was livened up a bit by an Orkney vole falling into the trench then scurrying around in panic before taking refuge under a stone, from where it was eventually retrieved and released unharmed, and the surface cleaned up pretty well in the end:

Back in structure 6 Rose discovered that the the whalebone socket at one side of the hearth was in fact one of a pair, presumably for holding an upright at each side of the hearth supporting a cross piece for cooking over the fire:

The second one is much less well-preserved than the first and is going to take some careful excavation to retrieve from the ground. Rose also had an oil lamp, but only a partial one as it's broken in half across the middle, even so good to have two in one day:

It being a full moon on the 1st August we've got Spring tides at the moment, so the sea was lapping at the lower levels of site, luckily it was fairly calm and the wind was coming in from the north so not banking the waves up or we'd have had both rain and sea spray to contend with:

We'll be starting the backfilling of some areas on Sunday thankfully after we've had our days off to recover, shifting sandbags isn't too bad but hauling rocks is quite another matter.


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