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Seminar: Social perspectives on Bronze Age farming communities 20112012 Staff: Prof.

Harry Fokkens in cooperation with Yvonne van Amerongen , (Jos Kleijne, Wouter Roessingh, Patrick Valentijn, Wilco van Zijverden) Place: De Vrieshof 2 / 002 Programme 2011-2012

In August 2011 a new research project, funded by the Dutch Science Foundation NWO, has started in the chair cluster NW Europe. The project is called Farmers of the coast: coastal farming communities on the southern North Sea coast, 2000800 BC. Five PhD-students and a few other researchers will be working on the analysis of Bronze Age sites in Westfrisia excavated in the nineteen sixties and seventies and of therir place in a wider framework of Northsea coastal farming communities, their economy, identity and social networks. In this seminar we will discuss and study different aspects of this research project. The PhD members of the project will participate and also the first year Research Master students, who will have to carry out separate assignments. I scheduled this seminar earlier in the year then originally foreseen because it may spark off ideas for theses. Last year all MA and even RMA students who participated in the Vorstengrafseminar (with the same set-up) wrote their these on the Vorstengraf in cohesion, and that proved to be stimulating. By organising the seminar around the new project, with many aspects that could be a subject of study (landscape, farming, settlements, burial, heritage management, etc.) I hope to offer students a coherent research framework for theses. The goal of the seminar is first to acquire knowledge about the project and the data that it wants to discuss. This is accomplished by reading and discussing the proposal and by studying and presenting the data of sites in Westfrisia and along the Northsea coast (Denmark, N. Germany) for comparison. Depending on the number of students in the class individual participants or groups of two get the assignment to study a particular aspect of the project. PhD students complement this with their own contributions and coach the students in the preparation of their presentations. The seminar will be assessed on the basis of three elements: Presentations in class of a case study; Short essay on one of subjectes presented and discussed in class; participation in discussion;

To conclude the seminar we aim to organise a workshop with (international) guests in winter 2011-12 (January), since this was foreseen in the grant proposal, but details and goals have to be developed still. All data necessary for the seminar will in principle be made available on blackboard.



assignment read and discuss projectplan

presentation Fokkens

3 Nov Introduction / Project plan 10 Nov 17 Nov 24 Nov The physical landscape Sites and landscapes Sites and landscapes

assignment landscape Student presentations Student presentations

Van Zijverden: landscape and Climate RMA students: The Bronze Age landscapes of Schleswich and Jutland Bovenkarspel: Julius / Max Hoogkarspel: Ady / Dominika Medemblik Schepenwijk: Renate Zwaagdijk: Janneke Opmeer: Bram Texel: Marjan

1 Dec Westfrisian settlements 8 Dec Farming and subsistence 15 Dec 22 Dec evaluation and conclusion Social networks assignment transport

Roessingh : the settlement landscape of West Frisia assignment farming Van Amerongen : Bronze Age farming Valentijn: Social networks and Identity

The programme starts with the study of a series of sites and a presentation in class. Next the PhDin the project will present their research, difficulties they expect, expectations, methods. Students will be asked in teams of two, to read about and discuss different aspects of the projects. Those assignments will be used as discussion papers. Typically there will be a presentation of 30-45 min by a PhD and then 45 min of discussion. The Research Master students will be asked to give an introduction in the Bronze Age landscapes of Denmark and n. Germany and also discuss how these data are used by Kristiansen and Early (Thy project).

Assignment 10 November: Palaeogeography of West Frisia

The palaeogeography of West Frisia is well-studied. Hence there is still an ongoing debate on the rise of a raised peat bog leading to the complete abandonment of the settlement sites in the eastern part of West Frisia at the end of the Late Bronze Age (800 cal BC). Recently a new paleogeographical map has been published. Plotting finds dating in the Middle and Late Bronze Age at the 1500 cal BC map, is good for a laugh (figure 1). The following question is easily raised but difficult to solve:

Where, when and why did a raised peat bog emerge?

Figure 1 Paleogeographic map of West Frisia 1500 cal BC with finds dating in the Middle and Late Bronze Age (after Bazelmans e.a. 2011).

Research history

It al starts with the excavation of two burial mounds (Zwaagdijk and Wervershoof) by Van Giffen. In his publication on these burial mounds he wonders why these burial mounds are not covered by clay whilst the base of the mounds is situated at -1.70 m NAP (Dutch ordnance level). In 1958 it was suggested by Edelman (not the famous soil scientist) that the existence of a raised peat bog could have protected the eastern part of West Frisia from inundation. The leading soil scientists at that moment, Pons & Wiggers, accepted the existence of a peat cover for the lower areas of West Frisia but rejected the idea of a complete peat cover in their article on the genesis of the landscape of North Holland. The

presence of peat in some areas cannot be denied due to the prescence of daliegaten= peat extraction. In his thesis Ente supports the vision of Wiggers & Pons and suggests differential subsidence as a cause for the present day low elevation of the investigated area. The find of peat remnants under the church of Aartswoud in 1967 settled the discussion: West Frisia had been covered by a raised peat bog.

But. There is no peat left, so where has it gone?? Borger presents in his thesis an explanation for the apparent disappearance of the entire peat cover: oxidation by reclamation. He states that the non-stop exploitation for agriculture of eastern West Frisia since the 14th century has led to a complete oxidation of the peat cover, a phenomenon which cannot been proven by soil scientists. Peat areas which have been reclaimed in the 14th century have a characteristic subdivision. Usually the parcels are long and small divided by ditches. This type of subdivision can be recognized in certain areas of West Frisia. However in the eastern part of West Frisia the subdivision is extremely irregular. Borger suggests that the original subdivision in this area has been lost due to the intensive crop cultivation since the reclamation in the 14th century.

Since this publication several other peat remnants have been discovered for instance Klokkeweelbog (published by Pals et al., 2008), Westfriese Omringdijk (published by Van Geel et al., 1982/1983 and Van Geel in prep. ), Schagen castle (unpublished F. Diederik), Warmenhuizen (published by Bakels, 2005) and recently in the centre of the city of Enkhuizen. Remarkbly none of the mentioned peat remnants developed into a true raised bog. Only the peat remnant Westfriese Omringdijk possibly changes into an oligothrophic peat after 1850 BP. So the question remains: was there a raised bog or not?

For understanding the general outline of the problem a few key-articles have been selected. We ask the student participants to read different articles and bring their evidence in when possible.The article of De Mulder & Bos, 1982 sketches the development of the landscape of West Frisia prior to the period of habitation. In the article by Van Geel, Hallewas & Pals, 1982/1983 the relation between the palaeogeography, habitation and palaeoecology is explained. In the article by Van Geel, Buurman & Waterbolk, 1996 an explanation for the sudden change in the pace of the supposed peat growth is presented. Due to a climatic change the inhabitants of West Frisia were forced to abandon their settlement sites, according to this article. In the article by Buurman, 1999 botanical evidence for wetter and probably cooler conditions is presented for the site of Westwoud.


Choose in pairs one of the research questions presented below. Read the literature which is presented for each question. Use your data in the discussion that will develop. Prepare one or two slides that demonstrate the main points.

1. What is the effect of climate change towards cooler and wetter conditions on peat growth? 2. Which parameters are determining the groundwater level in the Bronze Age? 3. Which factors control differential subsidence? 4. How can we explain the occurrence of sites like Emmeloord J97, Schagen De Hoep Noord, Enkhuizen Kadijken and Hoogwoud within the existing model?

1. What is the effect of climate change towards cooler and wetter conditions on peat growth? Compare the articles of Baeteman, 2005 and Van Geel et al., 1996. Use the data from the article of Buurman, 1999 to make a statement con or pro for each theory.

2. Which parameters are determining the groundwater level in the Bronze Age? IJzereef determined a sudden rise in the groundwater level based on an analysis of wells. Van de Plassche et al., 2005 stated that the flood basin effect can be an explanation for a rise in the ground water level. Explain the theory of the flood basin effect and describe what the effect of a change in drainage basin characteristics could be on the groundwater level in the Middle and Late Bronze Age and Early Iron Age.

3. Which factors control differential subsidence? Ente suggests that differential subsidence could be the cause of the low elevation of the present day landscape in the eastern part of West-Frisia. Is it possible that the rise of the ground water level as observed by IJzereef is influenced, at least partially, by man induced differential subsidence? Use the article by Ervynck et al., 1999 or Vos & Van Heeringen, 1997 to answer this question.

4. How can we explain the occurrence of sites like Emmeloord J97, Schagen De Hoep Noord, Enkhuizen Kadijken and Hoogwoud within the existing model? Several sites dating in the Bronze Age are situated at a location in the landscape which is surprising, taking in account the boundaries of the model presented by

De Mulder & Bos and Van Geel et al., 1982/1983. They simply could not have existed according to these models. Analyze the location of these sites using the site reports. Present the date and the palaeogeographic situation for the different sites. Explain for each site if it does or doesnt fit into the existing model. Present arguments for the (dis-)agreement with the model.

Literature Baeteman, C. (2005). How subsoil morphology and erodibility influence the origin and pattern of late Holocene tidal channels: case studies from the Belgian coastal lowlands Quat. Sci. Rev. 24(18-19): 2146-2162. Beek, R. van & T.D. Hamburg Bronstijd-vindplaatsen te Hoogwoud-Oost, een aanvullende archeologische inventarisatie, Archol Rapport 14, Leiden. Bulten, E.E.B., F.J.G. van der Heijden & T. Hamburg, 2002: Emmeloord, Prehistorische visweren en fuiken, ADC Rapport 140, Bunschoten. Buurman, J., 1999: Archaeobotanical investigations of a Middle and Late Bronze Age settlement site at Westwoud (West-Friesland). B.R.O.B. 43, Amersfoort, pp. 99-140. Ervynck, A., Baeteman, C., Demiddele, H., Hollevoet, Y., Pieters, M., Schelvis, J., Tys, D., Van Strydonc, M. & Verhaeghe, F., 1999: Human occupation because of a regression, or the cause of a transgression? A critical review of the interaction between geological events and human occupation in the Belgian coastal plain during the first millenium AD. Probleme der Kstenforschung im sdlichen Nordseegebied 26: 97-121. Geel, B. van , D.P. Hallewas & J.P. Pals, 1982/1983: A Late Holocene deposit under the Westfriese Zeedijk near Enkhuizen (Prov. Of Noord-Holland, The Netherlands): paleoecological and archaeological aspects, Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology, 38, pp. 269-335. Geel, B. van, Buurman, J. and Waterbolk, H.T., 1996. Archaeological and palaeoecological indications for an abrupt climate change in The Netherlands and evidence for climatological teleconnections around 2650 BP. Journal of Quaternary Science 11: 451-460. Gerrets, D.A. & A.H. Schutte, 2002: Schagen - Plangebied De Hoep Noord, het archeologisch onderzoek in 2002, ADC Rapport 179, Bunschoten. Lohof, E.& J. Vaars, 2005: Een nederzetting uit de Bronstijd te Hoogwoud, gemeente Opmeer ADC Rapport 401, Amersfoort. Mulder, E.F.J. de, & J.H.A. Bosch, 1982: Holocene stratigraphy, radiocarbon datings and paleogreography of central and northern North-Holland (The Netherlands), Mededelingen Rijks Geologische Dienst 36-3, 111-160. Plassche, O. van de, S.J.P. Bohncke, B. Makaske & J. Van der Plicht, 2005: Waterlevel changes in the Flevo area,central Netherlands (53001500 BC): implications

for relative mean sea-level rise in the Western Netherlands, Quaternary International 133-134, pp. 7793. Vos, P.C. & R.M. van Heeringen, 1997: Holocene geology and occupation history of the province of Zeeland (SW Netherlands) Mededelingen Rijksgeologische Dienst/Nederlands Instituut voor Toegepaste Geowetenschappen TNO, 59, pp. 5109. Further reading Vos, P.C., J. Bazelmans, H.J.T. Weerts & M.J. van der Meulen (red.), 2011: Atlas van Nederland in het Holoceen, landschap en bewoning vanaf de laatste ijstijd tot nu, Bert Bakker, Amsterdam.

17 November The North Sea coast On the 24th we want to discuss comparable sites in Denmark and Schleswich Holstein. This is the task of the Research Master students to do that. Interestingly, the Thyproject also has featured in the work of Kristiansen, Kristiansen and Larsen, and Earle as a model for the Bronze Age society. We would like one of the students to comment on that aspect by discussing this as well. The others present and discuss the data and 'the otherness' of it as compared to what we learned about Westfrisia. 24 November Sites and landscape. In order to get an idea of what we will be studying in terms of sites and data, every student will study one site and give a short presentation about it on 17 November. We have 2 x 45 min, so that will allow for about 4-5 presentations and time for discussion. Each presentation should be about 10 minutes. We would like you to give a short introduction to the site, its dating, the kind of data that are present, numbers of house plans, data on ecology, etc. The presentations will basically be descriptive. There is actually one site that has been published in English, all others have been 'published' in Dutch. Therefore we have allotted that site (Hoogkarspel) to Ady and Dominka. The other sites have been divided between the Dutch speaking students. Hoogkarspel: Dominika Kofel, Ady Roxburgh Bovenkarspel: Julius van Roemburg (sites), Max Iping Petersen (bones / economy) Medemblik-Schepenwijk II: Renate de Boer Zwaagdijk-Oost: Janneke Ostendorf

Opmeer-Hoogwoud: Bram Wessels Texel: Marjan van den Berg 8 December The group of participants will be divided in severla groups of two/three people. Each group will research a specific topic and prepare a few slides about this and a 'fact sheet'. Meaning a short list of characteristics. The idea is that we try to get insight in several aspects of farming in order to be able to reconstruct the complexity of Bronze Age farming life. Method: reading in historical archives, books about traditional farming, ethnographies, or roaming the internet for information (should be backed-up by primary data). Group 1: Selection of crops Explore what the available crops were in North-Western Europe in the Bronze Age and discuss which of these were selected by Bronze Age farmers and why they might have made this choice. Group 2: Land working Explore how oxen are used for ploughing and pulling carts. What is necessary for oxen, what are aspects that would be needed for this farming practice (training of animals, stables, fodder, etc.). Group 3: Harvesting processes Explore how grains may have been harvested (sickles?), processed (in order to extract the grains) and stored. Also, which tools would be needed? Group 4: Flax Explore what flax needs to be grown and how it can be worked. What is necessary to process it? For what purposes could it be used? Group 5: Cattle and sheep raising Explore what minimum requirements are for sustainable cattle and sheep raising. How large should a herd be: what is a minimum number for sustainable reproduction? What do they need in terms of fodder in summer and winter?

15 December This assignment is about seafaring in the Bronze Age, a subject that most people know little of. We asked several questions (sub-assignments) that should be studied by preparing a few slides on the subject that can be presented in class. The RMA students are guide a more theoretical discussion of a theoretical concept that recently has been brought forward and is now often used. Group 1: 3 people. What is known about boat technology in England. Is there a distinction between river / inland boats and sea going vessels?

There are several books, one edited by Peter Clark of the Canterbury Archaeological trust (2004): The Dover Bronze Age boat in context: society and water transport in prehistoric Europe. But also look at the Ferriby boat and at sewn plank boats. Group 2: 2 people. What is known about Irish curraghs (coracles). How are they made? Group 3: 2 people What is know about Viking sea faring? What were there mayor routes? Group 4: 1 person. How are boats depicted on Scandinavian rock art? Discussions in for instance Ling, J. (2008). Elevated rock art. Towards a maritime understanding of rock art in northern Bohusln,Sweden. Gotarc Serie B (Gothenburg Archaeological theses), 49. Gteborg: Gteborg University, but also in Fleming Kauls book about ships on bronzes. Group 5: RMA students. Stuart Needham has invented the concept of maretory. Present the subject and discuss it. Is it useful"? Does it give us new insights? What is the theoretical background? The first article on the subject is published in P. Clark (ed.) 2009: Bronze age connections : cultural contact in prehistoric Europe.