Having survived the six weeks of March, I’m now slowly digging out from everything else that accumulated while I was frantically writing things. Some of those things are very much worth sharing with all of you.
Are you getting a tax refund? Let me help you spend it. These two new books look lovely.
Textiles and Textile Production in Europe: From Prehistory to 400AD is published by us in association with the Centre for Textile Research. In archaeology, the study of textiles is often relegated to the marginalised zone of specialist and specialised subject and lack of dialogue between textile researchers and scholars in other fields means that as a resource, textiles are not used to their full potential or integrated into the overall interpretation of a particular site or broader aspects of human activity; this major new survey aims to redress this. Twenty-three chapters collect and systematise essential information on textiles and textile production from sixteen European countries, resulting in an up-to-date and detailed sourcebook and an easily accessible overview of the development of European textile technology and economy from prehistory to AD 400. Extensively illustrated, with over 200 colour illustrations, maps, chronologies and index, this will be an essential sourcebook not just for textile researchers but also the wider archaeological community.
The single volume Encyclopaedia of Medieval Dress and Textiles of the British Isles c. 450-1450 is a unique work that intends to bring together in 582 signed articles the latest research from across the range of disciplines which contribute to our knowledge of medieval dress and textiles. There has been a long-standing interest in the subject, which has recently manifested itself in a flowering of research and publications, including activities by the editors of the Encyclopaedia: the foundation of DISTAFF (Discussion, Interpretation and Study of Textile Arts, Fabrics and Fashion) as an umbrella organization for the presentation of papers at the major medieval congresses in Kalamazoo and Leeds (Netherton and Owen-Crocker); the establishment of the annual journal Medieval Clothing and Textiles (Netherton and Owen-Crocker); the Manchester Medieval Textiles Project (Coatsworth and Owen-Crocker); and the AHRC Lexis of Cloth and Clothing Project (Owen-Crocker and Sylvester).
Not feeling so wealthy? Maney Publishing has made the last three years of the Journal of Field Archaeology free to read online until 15 May.
The Society for Medieval Archaeology has made the first fifty issues of Medieval Archaeology accessible online in celebration of their fifieth anniversary.
(Yes, I know.)