Wiltshire Vol 1 Part 2

Wiltshire Vol I part ii
Edited by: 
Elizabeth Crittall
First Published: 
1 January, 1973

Volume I(2) contains a series of chapters originally planned to accompany within a single volume a comprehensive gazetteer of Wiltshire's prehistoric remains. In the event the gazetteer was published as Volume I(1) in 1957 and the chapters are now ap-pearing after a considerable lapse of time. Although the chapters are based largely upon the evidence contained in the gazet-teer, the authors have taken account of relevant excavations and research under- taken since 1957. The first five chapters tell the story from the beginning of human settlement until the end of the final phase of bronze technology, and they take, so far as archaeological evidence permits, a narra-tive form: thus some monuments with long life-spans, such as Stonehenge and Avebury, appear and re-appear as the chronological account unfolds. Those chapters cover a period for which the Wiltshire evidence is of great significance; they are written by Professor Stuart Piggott, whose long and close acquaintance with the antiquities of Wiltshire has enabled him to enter into considerable detail and often to set the local evidence against a continental or wider British background. Six chapters follow taking the story from the early pre-Roman Iron Age down to the end of the Roman era. Here the nature of the evidence makes a narrative style easier to adopt. The growing complexity of the settlement form is traced from the single enclosed farmstead of the early Iron Age to the hamlets and even small villages of the Roman period. The steady course of Romanization in Wiltshire is traced until its eventual collapse and the British victory at Mount Badon. A final chapter deals with the Pagan Saxon period, using archaeological, documentary, and place- name evidence; it gives special attention to that impressive but enigmatic earthwork known on its Wiltshire course as the East Wansdyke. Numerous line illustrations have been drawn specially for the volume.