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Title: An archaeology of early English boatbuilding practice, c.900-1600 AD, based mainly on finds from SE England
Author: Goodburn, Damian Mark
Awarding Body: University of London
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2003
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This study sets out to document and investigate evidence of how ship and boat builders worked in England from c. 900 to 1600AD. The whole scale of work is covered from small craft to aspects of work on large ships. The study attempts to show how investigations of nautical archaeological material can shed light on issues of wider archaeological interest such as, changes in; wooded cultural landscapes, technology and craft organisation. The source material is; two small dugout boat finds and selected ship and boat timbers found recycled in waterfront structures, in London. Historical sources and the results of experimentation are also drawn upon. It is now possible to use the results of the last twenty years of archaeological work to reinterpret the documentary sources. The study is set within a close dating framework provided by recent tree-ring work. Analysis is also made of the way nautical woodwork becomes preserved in archaeological deposits. The tools, techniques, logistics, procedures and raw materials used by boat and shipbuilders and their ancillary workers are reconstructed in detail. The labour time and quality invested is outlined for worked examples. Changes in technology, tools, the timber used and the organisation of ship and boat yards and ancillary trades are revealed and discussed. An attempt is also made to compare the outline of changing shipwrightry practice with aspects of medieval carpentry practice, in terms of timber use, tools, technology and labour investment. Some insights are gained into the expression of status in this branch of structural woodworking. Lastly, it is shown how the detailed reconstruction of the varied timber sources used by ship and boat builders up to c. 1600 can broaden the current views of historic woodlands.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available