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Prof John Hines 


Anglo-Saxon England c.580–720: The Chronological Basis. A programme of collaborative research comprising several complemetary techniques. These review the artefact typology and grave assemblages from what has been known as the ‘Final Phase’ of Anglo-Saxon furnished burial; undertake a seriation of finds using correspondence analysis; undertake high-precision radiocarbon dating of selected samples; Bayesian statistics are then used to refine the dates and evaluate the chronological modelling.

The project aims, methodologically, to test and develop the scope for archaeological dating using an integrated suite of techniques, each of which has a high degree of sophistication and precision of its own; to improve the basis for radiocarbon dating by re-calibrating the master curve for the period A.D 390-810; to yield a finer archaeological dating of fines from a key period of Anglo-Saxon history, in which the major kingdoms were established, and the conversion to Christianity took place.

This project is funded by English Heritage and its value is £350,000. 

The project work began in 1998 and was completed with publication of the final report in 2013.


RAF Lakenheath Anglo-Saxon cemeteries

This project is a carefully tailored programme of post-excavation analysis of the wealth of evidence excavated in three Early Anglo-Saxon grave fields within the boundaries of RAF Lakenheath, Eriswell parish, Suffolk, in the late 1990s. The project is managed by the Suffolk Archaeology Service for the Ministry of Defence Estates and John Hines serves as specialist Anglo-Saxon archaeologist on the Project Coordination team of four. Besides shared responsibility for the overall strategy and direction of the project, this involves both undertaking and supervising various aspects of specialist research in Cardiff’s Department of Archaeology. The three distinct burial grounds at Eriswell were in contemporary use, and the techniques of artefact typology, seriation of grave-assemblages, and high-precision radiocarbon dating, are targeted predominantly at the elucidation of the chronological, cultural and social comparison of these separate groups. Exploratory analysis will assess how far new techniques of ancient DNA analysis, together with strontium and oxygen isotope analysis, may add to our insights. These data can also be compared with results from earlier, Roman-period, and later Anglo-Saxon burials in the near vicinity. Particular emphasis has been paid in the post-excavation research design to a comprehensive and coordinated investigation of the use of material resources by the communities burying at Eriswell, and this is being realised though advanced laboratory analysis and postgraduate research at Cardiff and elsewhere.


RuneS: Runic Literacy in Old English and Old Frisian 

RuneS is the short title of the project Runische Schriftlichkeit in den germanischen Sprachen (Runic Literacy in the Germanic Languages), a long-term, 16-year project fundedby the Union of German Academies of Sciences and bases in the Academy of Sciences of Göttingen. Three coordinated research groups are working respectively on Old English plus Old Frisian, Old High German, and Old Norse inscriptions, and their regional predecessors. The Old English/Old Frisian group is centred in the Institutes for English Philology of the Universities of Eichstätt-Ingolstadt and Munich. The common research topics for all of the groups are (1) the precise explication of the sound-systems of the spoken languages represented and their relationship with the graphic system of the runic script, and (2) the range of texts committed to runic writing and their impications for the social and cultural role of runic literacy. The Old English and Frisian group aims to produce a free-access web-based corpus of the Old English and Old Frisian inscriptions, a body of material that in England is growing steadily in size at present, as a result of archaeological discoveries. John Hines a core member of this team both as a philological specialist in the languages and script, and as the project archaeologist. An important initial step has been the coordination of the work of this project with the recording role of the Portable Antiquities Scheme. An international conference co-sponsored by the School of History, Archaeology & Religion, Cardiff University and the Frisian Academy will take place in Leeuwarden in June 2014.