Everyday on site we work in close range to tourists from all over the world. Young and old, everyone is naturally curious about the dirt covered Canadian contingent working away.  You asked and we’re here to answer. Without further ado, the top seven questions we get asked on site:

Are you archaeologists?

The short answer is no, we’re not! But we are students from all different disciplines (insert every introduction post here) and being here at Vindolanda compliments our degrees in some way or form.

How do you know you’re finding everything?

You can never really be sure, but we are as careful about our work as we possibly can be. We have three great supervisors with us at all times, and when something looks even remotely like a find, we ask about it.

Do you reconstruct the site when you move everything?

Once you remove walls and pieces, you can never put them back in the exact same place you pulled them from. That’s why we both 3D model and survey all finds and walls at Vindolanda. If we needed to know exactly what a portion of the site looked like 15 years from now after it’s been backfilled, we can absolutely do it.

What have you found today?

Disclaimer: it changes from day to day and hour to hour. Today we found several sherds of amphorae, some Roman glass, and the everyday hoard of assorted pottery pieces!

Where are you from?

Proudly from the London of the Great North is the answer we want to give. More often we describe it as: the London two hours outside of Toronto. We think it’s just as great.

What tools do you use?

This answer also changes depending on what our job for the day is. We always have our trowels, spades, shovels, wheelbarrows, buckets and hand shovels. Depending on what the weather is that day we might also take a few sponges into our trench to bail out excess water from the day before. We have needed a few of those lately.

Do you get to keep the artifacts?

No, no, no and no. We don’t. Everything that we find belongs forever and always to the site. Besides, we wouldn’t even want to take it home! How would we keep it safe or preserved? Better that it stays here in it’s home where we have the ability to learn everything from it as we possibly can. After all, that’s what we’re here for.


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