Tuesday 23 August 2011

Ph Duh and the Kiddies' Detector

In a somewhat surprising post in among the marbles and mosaics on her blog PhDiva likens me to Michel van Rijn, "except that MvR's rants were motivated by money (ie he'd remove them for cash)". Anyhow the good doctor decided on behalf of all her fans in the Portable Antiquities Society to give A Gloucestershire metal detectorist's coarse blog a plug. I imagine in moments when she has nothing much to do, she might well enjoy reading vulgarisms like that with her doggie while scoffing cream cakes on the sofa.

In the post below it she thought it would be a good idea to give a plug for The Bill Wyman Metal Detector, in doing so stressing that she's met Mick Jagger (which she apparently threw in for some reason "just to wind Paul Barford up"; the internal logic of that remark escapes me). She asserts:
Britain is amazing in that we have so many history and archaeology enthusiasts who devote their spare time to trying to uncover remnants of the past. Many do so using a metal detector. It's a great hobby and harms no-one, unlike rioting or taking drugs. There are always a few bad apples, but the vast majority of people who make finds report them to the Portable Antiquities Scheme. It's a legal requirement to do so, and most metal detectorists are happy to do [so,] as it means they get to find out more about their items, and have official recognition of their discoveries.
well, pretty amazing to have two factual errors in one PhDivan sentence, but there you are. Dr King should know that in her country, it is not required by law, the PAS is a voluntary scheme (she can ask Dan Pett next time she tweets him). Duh. Secondly, the majority of finds made with a metal detector are not being shown to the PAS, most artefact hunters avoid them for various reasons. Including Dorothy King's new favourite bloggers Candice Jarman (she can ask Dan Pett how many records they have from her) and the author of that other blog. The problem is that PhDiva is misled by the name "detecting", because she says these people "uncover remnants of the past". No, actually they dig them up and take them away, in Greece you'd call that "looting", in Britain, its not called that and British archaeologists like PhDiva see absolutely nothing wrong with it happening right under their noses.

Even Dr King admits she herself has been artefact hunting in Essex with a Bill Wyman Metal Detector. Apparently the good doctor has a reputation of being an archaeologist who could be "asked about metal detectors", but admits that so far she's "only used one, and only for a few days. It was the Bill Wyman Detector". I bet it made her back ache, because its made for really short people (as in children). She claims to have found "Roman" and "Viking" remains, but I suspect that's not true as I do not think you can actually find anything much with a Bill Wyman detector. Look at the UKDFD website, where they give the machines used to find the finds exhibited (down at the bottom of the page). How many of them were found with a Bill Wyman machine? QED.

Vignette: Mick Jagger had the pleasure of meeting Dorothy King

1 comment:

Mo said...

I bet it was difficult metal detecting in her Manolo Blahnik's.

I very rarely look at her blog. It's all a bit too "third wave feminist" for my liking.

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