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Optically stimulated luminescence profiling and dating of earthworks: the creation and development of prehistoric field boundaries at Bosigran, Cornwall

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Author(s)

Soetkin Vervust, Tim Kinnaird, Peter Herring, Sam Turner

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Abstract

Accurately dating the creation and development of earthwork features is a long-standing problem for archaeologists. This article presents results from Bosigran (Cornwall, UK), where boundary banks believed to be prehistoric in origin are assessed using optically stimulated luminescence profiling and dating (OSL-PD). The results provide secure construction dates for different boundaries in the Bronze and Iron Ages, as well as chronologies for their early medieval and later development. The research demonstrates not only the prehistoric origins of these distinctive Cornish field systems, but also a practical and cost-effective methodology suitable for dating earthworks around the world.

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)420-436
Number of pages17
JournalAntiquity
Volume94
Issue number374
Early online date30 Mar 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2020

    Research areas

  • Britain, Bronze Age, Cornwall, field systems, Iron Age, landscape archaeology, OSL-PD

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