Probably Some Stupid Questions????

Pete E
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fred wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 1:11 pm Haulage was relatively expensive so the chances are that anything deliberately brought to an area would be fully utilised.

Importation of shells just for soil dressing would only be viable if there were no other more local sources of lime, like chalk. For the same reason I would have though that because of the bulk issue they'd be reduced before they were transported or scattered on land so you probably wouldn't find many whole shells in land dressing.

It would also be useful to consider when there were enough people living locally to have deposited the volume of shells that you now see. If there were really not that many you might just have the domestic waste from a few local families which had been spread on the land for a century or two.

You should be able to get some idea about the likely age from the associated finds, perhaps even non metal ones like bits of clay pipe stem, pottery or glass. :thumbsup:
Unfortunately, the shells were deposited in spoil heaps and other areas of excavated soil across a small building site, so the original context has been lost. Even so, you could still see concentrations of shells in some areas, and others where they appeared spread out. Finds from the area are modern to Roman and everything in-between I suspect...Could see a few of broken bottles too that looked late 19thC to early 20thC..

Below is one area of shells I took a snap of...
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fred
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Well concentrations like that suggest to me that they weren't simply soil dressing anyway and probably not from any sort of industry. I reckon that you have a few scattered middens. In general the probable Roman oyster shells that I have come across have usually been pretty chalky and soft while later ones have largely been almost like new. :thumbsup:
Pete E
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fred wrote: Tue Jun 21, 2022 2:59 pm Well concentrations like that suggest to me that they weren't simply soil dressing anyway and probably not from any sort of industry. I reckon that you have a few scattered middens. In general the probable Roman oyster shells that I have come across have usually been pretty chalky and soft while later ones have largely been almost like new. :thumbsup:
Could very well be middens as there was all sorts of interesting "stuff" across the surface of the spoil heaps...
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Easylife
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Does looks like ploughed out middens with the broken bones too, so occupation. :thumbsup:
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