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dc.contributor.authorBates, C. Richard
dc.contributor.authorBates, Martin
dc.contributor.authorDawson, Sue
dc.contributor.authorHuws, Dei
dc.contributor.authorWhittaker, John
dc.contributor.authorWickham-Jones, Caroline
dc.identifier.citationBates , C R , Bates , M , Dawson , S , Huws , D , Whittaker , J & Wickham-Jones , C 2016 , ' The environmental context of the Neolithic monuments on the Brodgar Isthmus, Mainland, Orkney ' , Journal of Archaeological Science , vol. 7 , pp. 394-407 .
dc.identifier.otherPURE: 242502935
dc.identifier.otherPURE UUID: 799912cf-df34-4090-aed6-579986e01c01
dc.identifier.otherScopus: 84969872440
dc.identifier.otherORCID: /0000-0001-9147-7151/work/29591580
dc.identifier.otherWOS: 000415608200038
dc.descriptionThis work was funded in part by Historic Environment Scotland.en
dc.description.abstractThe World Heritage Sites of Orkney, Scotland contain iconic examples of Neolithic monumentality that have provided significant information about this period of British prehistory. However, currently, a complete understanding of the sites remains to be achieved. This is, in part, because the monuments lack an adequate context within the broader palaeolandscape. Recent investigations (seismic geophysical survey, microfossil analysis and 14C dating) in and around the Brodgar Isthmus, both onshore and offshore, are used to reconstruct the landscapes at a time when sea-level, climate and vegetation were different to that experienced today. Results show that in the early Neolithic the isthmus between the Ring of Brodgar and Stones of Stenness was broader with a smaller loch to the west. Furthermore this landscape contained sandstone outcrops that would have provided a potential source of stone for monument construction. Microfossil analysis and radiocarbon dates demonstrate that the Loch of Stenness was transformed from freshwater to brackish during the early Neolithic, perhaps immediately preceding construction of the major monuments. Finally, the analysis of our data suggests that sediment influx to the loch shows a tenfold increase coincident with widespread vegetation change that straddles the Mesolithic/Neolithic transition at c. 8 ka cal. B.P. These results provide, for the first time, a landscape context for the Neolithic sites on the isthmus.
dc.relation.ispartofJournal of Archaeological Scienceen
dc.rights© 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. This work is made available online in accordance with the publisher’s policies. This is the author created, accepted version manuscript following peer review and may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at
dc.subjectLoch of Stennessen
dc.subjectSea level changeen
dc.subjectSeismic profilingen
dc.subjectNeolithic World Heritage Siteen
dc.subjectGE Environmental Sciencesen
dc.titleThe environmental context of the Neolithic monuments on the Brodgar Isthmus, Mainland, Orkneyen
dc.typeJournal articleen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews.Earth and Environmental Sciencesen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews.Centre for Ancient Environmental Studiesen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews.Marine Alliance for Science & Technology Scotlanden
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews.Scottish Oceans Instituteen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews.St Andrews Sustainability Instituteen
dc.description.statusPeer revieweden

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