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Title: Understanding Pottery Kilns: Interpretmg structure and process through experimental archaeology
Author: Walker, David James Clement
Awarding Body: University of Nottingham
Current Institution: University of Nottingham
Date of Award: 2007
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This thesis is concerned with the understanding and interpretation of archaeological pottery kilns through experimental archaeology. It argues that the experimental reconstruction and firing of pottery kilns is not merely useful but essential if the production of ceramics in pre-industrial contexts is to be fully understood. The first. part of this work covers some fundamentals of pottery kilns. The constituent parts of pottery kilns are illustrated and a standard nomenclature for describing the pottery kiln is proposed. Following this the theory of ceramic firing is described, covering both well-understood principles like the ceramic change and more esoteric factors such as low-temperature reduction. The differences between open and kiln firing are also considered. The second part looks closely at the experimental approach. The history of experimental firing in Britain is appraised, as are the author's own experimental firing projects. The potential of experimental archaeology for one case study is also explored. The concluding chapter of this thesis provides an analysis of experimental firing as a technique. It discusses social aspects, judging success and failure, the achievements of past work and the necessity for future work in some areas. Finally the potential and limitations of experimental archaeology as a technique for understanding past societies is scrutinised. The attached CD Appendix contains a reVIew of published classifications of pottery kilns and a proposed overarching classification. It also contains case studies ofpottery kilns excavated in Britain with appraisals of their interpretation. Understanding Pottery Kilns: interpreting structure and process through eXjJerimental archaeology. Thesis submitted for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy, University ofNottingham, june 2007. DavidjC Walker
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available