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Title: Lewis, Mesolithic to modern : a study of site, settlement distribution and landscape formation in the Western Isles of Scotland
Author: Burgess, Christopher
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2002
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This study analyses surveys carried out on the Isle of Lewis between 1993 and 1997, by the author. Surveys were targeted across representative areas of terrain to the west and east of the south of Loch Roag, and also at its southern, inland, end. Later an additional area was examined, the Isle of Bernera, located in the centre of Loch Roag, and much of the coastline of Lewis was also surveyed during a coastal erosion assessment commissioned by Historic Scotland, one of the important discoveries of which was a large number of promontory enclosures distributed all round the coast of the island. These latter surveys were used in this study to provide a wider base, and a test, for the results of the initial analysis. The aim of the study was to examine the viability of using archaeological data derived primarily from survey, supported with limited excavation, to model site and settlement distribution and landscape development. The extensive data sets were drawn not only from the author’ own surveys but also from the Royal Commission on Ancient and Historic Monuments of Scotland (National Monuments Record of Scotland and the First Edition Survey Project), and from the survey carried out by Ian Armit in the Bhaltos area in the early 1990s. Data was processed using GIS software (IDRISI and MAPINFO) to allow the location of individual classes of monument to be compared to the prevailing terrain types on the island. Monument type locations were also compared to each other and to place-names, and to the geomorphology. The resultant data allowed a model to be formulated for each monument type, that describes not only its relationship to terrain types but also data such as prominence in the landscape, association or otherwise with other monument classes, place-names and frequency. Following the initial formulation of the model, its predications were tested against the results of the survey of Great and Little Bernera.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available