Hi Naomi (and David), what about the scapula from Southampton? Of course its
very rarity continues to support the pre-Norman absence but it is an
interesting one - deep in a well on site 7, we always used to say it was
from a French trader's lunchbox!
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----- Original Message -----
From: "naomi.sykes" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Monday, March 14, 2005 9:09 AM
Subject: Re: [ZOOARCH] Evidence of rabbit
There are purported examples from across the country but all must be viewed
with a certain level of scepticism, unless their context and dating has been
confirmed - intrusion and misidentification are a big problem. In my
case-study of Sussex and Hampshire - where all reported examples were
re-analysed - none of the pre-1150 were confirmed to be archaeological
rabbits. The earliest proven specimen dated to the mid- to late- twelfth
century, which fits well with the bulk of the historical evidence and is
also supported by the recent volume....
Callou, C. 2003. De la garenne au clapier : étude archéozoologique du lapin
en Europe occidentale. (Mémoires du Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle ;
Tome 189) Paris : Publications Scientifiques du Muséum.
I am still open to the possibility that rabbits were imported (possibly on
multiple occassions) prior to becoming established in this country, and I
would definitely be interested to hear more about your findings.
If you haven't already seen it, it's worth giving Warry (1988) a read. He
argues that the rabbit has a great antiquity in Britain and their presence
has simply been overlooked due to issues of folk taxonomy - that both
rabbits and hares were recorded as 'Lepus'. A good point but I'm afraid
Bond's (1988) counter-argument seems more probable..
Warry, J. 1988. The Ancient History of Rabbits. The local Historian 18,
Bond, J. 1988. Rabbits: the case for their Medieval introduction in Britain.
The Local Historian, 18, 53-57.
If you have any trouble getting hold of these I can send you copies.
All the best,
Dr Naomi Sykes,
Centre for Applied Archaeological Analyses,
School of Humanities (Archaeology)
University of Southampton,