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The Prehistoric Island Landscape of Scilly

Gary Robinson
Publication Year:
243pp. Illustrated throughout with maps, plans, tables, drawings and photographs, 22 data Appendices
ISBN 10:
BAR number:


The Isles of Scilly are located 48km south-west of Lands End (Cornwall) England, and comprise a small archipelago of granite islands. The interpretation of the islands' archaeology has received no recent detailed consideration and has therefore not been studied within a contemporary archaeological framework. This research seeks to redress this by considering the prehistory of Scilly from the earliest evidence for a human presence on the islands until the end of the 1st century BC (Mesolithic until Iron Age). It will draw upon recent approaches to the study of landscapes, seascapes and islands and from within archaeology and anthropology, as well as other approaches developed within the broader social sciences. The study provides the first detailed chronological framework for Scillonian prehistory and reconsiders evidence for the prehistoric environmental background of the islands. The analysis of the archaeological record of the islands are based upon data collected through fieldwork and from published and unpublished sources. The archaeology is examined through a detailed study of the distribution and configuration of prehistoric settlements, monuments and material culture and their significance within the island landscape. Exploring changes and continuities within the archaeological record of the islands the study will provide insights into how prehistoric societies may have transformed and sustained their use and perception of the island landscape.