I forwarded the enquiry about hair to Allan Hall and he has asked me to
post this message to zooarch.
-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Reply to ZOOARCH list
Date: Fri, 25 Feb 2005 10:41:28 -0000
From: AR Hall <[log in to unmask]>
To: "'Prof TP O'Connor'" <[log in to unmask]>
CC: "'Kenward, H.K.'" <[log in to unmask]>
I tried sending this but am not a subscriber, so it bounced! Could one
of you two send it if you feel it serves a purpose?
If you will permit a response from a mere archaeobotanist (and with
apologies if this repeats anything in the responses of those who
subscribe to the list), my main reference for identification of animal
hairs is the long out-of-date
Wildman, A.B. 1954. The microscopy of animal textile fibres. Leeds: Wool
Industries Research Association. (it has some coverage of cow and horse,
as well as the more conventional fibre-yielding taxa and some useful
drawings and photomicrographs)
There is a guide by Appleyard, which I have not been able to find
Appleyard, H.M. 1978. Guide to the identification of animal fibres.
Leeds. [This is a reprint of the original publication by WIRA with
additional SEM micrographs. ISBN: 1873132921]
and for a long time a forthcoming title by this same author was included
on the Archetype books (http://www.archetype.co.uk/) forthcoming list -
but I see it's not there now.
As for separation, I would have thought that conventional sieving would
be as easy as anything - hairs tend to clot together so it may be
possible to fish aggregations of them out during the sieving process.
I should be interested to know if the sediment contains bark and/or bark
sclereids. If you have an archaeobotanical colleague involved with this
material, they are maybe already checking for such material? There are
also insects which (taken with other evidence) may be good indicators of
tanning waste - Trox scaber is one which my colleague Harry Kenward and
I have found in association with bark debris in what we have intepreted
as waste from a tannery in York.
Dr Allan Hall, English Heritage Senior Research Fellow, Department of
Archaeology, University of York, The King's Manor, York YO1 7EP, UK
+44 1904 434950 (fax 433902)