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Later Prehistory: Projects and Publications

Departmental research into the Bronze Age has recently been dominated by study and recording of bronze and gold artefacts, both within our collections and those reported as discoveries by metal detectorists. Many of these have been published within archaeological journals. A project of particular note, supported by the Department, is a metallurgical study of Welsh bronze artefacts by Dr Peter Northover, Oxford University.

During 1992 and 1993, Kenneth Brassil, now in the Education Department, excavated a number of exploratory trenches in the close vicinity of the early find site of the famous Iron Age Cerrig-y-drudion bowl. These trenches revealed traces of timber roundhouses, demonstrating the presence of Iron Age settlement nearby. The Department has, in recent years, also supported a number of field projects in Wales, including the survey and excavation of a Bronze Age copper mine at Copa Hill, Cwymystwyth, a project led by Simon Timberlake of the Early Mines Research Group.

A collections-based research project involving analytical testing of Iron Age bronzes, brasses and enamels is currently being developed by Adam Gwilt and Mary Davis. Staff are also contributing to a project involving re-analysis of our important Iron Age ritual metalwork assemblage from Llyn Cerrig Bach, Anglesey. The principal analysis is being undertaken by Philip McDonald and Professor William Manning, University of Cardiff.

During 1994, the museum hosted a touring exhibition celebrating the European year of the Bronze Age. Major themes of Later Prehistory have also been explored in the past few years in our own exhibitions Art, Ritual and Death and The Celts in Wales.

Adam Gwilt, Later Prehistorian

For further information, please visit our research project pages: Archaeology & Numismatics Department