Friday, 19 February 2016

Lightweight PAS Finds-Fluff Alert

It is what the Bloomsbury boys call for some reason "Finds Friday" and annoyingly we have more lightweight collectors'-Finds-Fluff-posing-as-"outreach":
4 godz.4 godziny temu
Another Saxon fabric impression on a lead pot plug- thanks to responsible metal detecting
Here is the object, as illustrated rather uninformatively (how was it made, where are the edges that were in contact with the pot, what shape was the hole in the pot, where is the cloth impression in relation to the hole, was the cloth on the inside or outside of the pot, is the cloth an impression in the lead, or the corrosion products of the lead? ). I do not know about "responsible artefact hunting", instead of repetitive oooh-ahh head-patting, back-slapping show-and-tell, I think we all deserve to see, some responsible reporting and a more critical approach to the issue of artefact collecting from British archaeologists dealing with the decontextualised objects artefact hunters hoik-and-show.

The plug, what in archaeological terms does it mean?

Paul Barford asked "What does it mean? Why did the pot need "plugging"? What is "responsible" about artefact collecting?" Hugh Willmott did not understand the questions. I suppose like most British archaeologists he's got used to talking down to metal detectorists. Can we have some real archaeological outreach please, what does it mean, why did this pot need "plugging", and what is "responsible" about exploiting the archaeological record for collectables? Yes?

UPDATE More PAS support for this approach, a FLO follows the herd and retweets the original fluff (Julie Cassidy here) but no further development of the glib pabulum has yet emerged from the 'Expensively-Public-Funded Gatekeepers to the Collected-Away Past'. Come on PAS, surely you can do better than that for all that public money?

Vignette: Wotta lotta sheep we have in British archaeology, any of them care to explain to me why artefact collecting is such a "good"  thing? Baaaaaaah...

I see Hugh Wilmot is not really in the mood to actually tell us anything more about the find he so gleefully show-and-tell posted:
Oh dear wrong assessment of me  on every factual count. Easier to carp from the sidelines than actually contribute.  
Well, no Mr Wilmott, this is not about you and your ego. This is about the broader issue of the effects of current British policies on artefact hunting on the European archaeological heritage. I suspected that we'd have a long wait to see from you or any other PAS-supporting archaeologist a proper explanation of what "responsible artefact hunting" is in a Europe-wide context (not head in the sand insular one). You have, however, used the term and are still refusing to define what you think it means. There is a whole blog here which is nothing but a 'contribution' to precisely this debate - where is yours? I think we can all see who, in the broader context, is making the "wrong assessment" and whose approach is "on the sidelines". 

Make a contribution by all means Mr W., give us a definition of "responsible artefact collecting" that covers more than complying with the current limp-wrist legislation of just two parts of the United Kingdom. Let's have one that applies to the global exploitation of the archaeological record for personal entertainment and profit. Can you do that, before accusing me prematurely of having made a false assessment of your ability to do that? 


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