This book presents the results of excavations at the Dix Pit quarry near the village of Stanton Harcourt, Oxfordshire, which revealed one of the largest and most-remarkable Pleistocene assemblages yet to be found in Britain, with finds spanning over c.200,0000 years.
The site was first revealed after a mammoth tusk was unearthed at the base of one of the pits in 1989. What followed was an extensive and detailed fieldwork programme, carried out over the span of ten years. Now, after decades of extensive post-excavation analysis and conservation, the project has finally finished and the full results are presented here for the first time. They do not disappoint.
The book details not only the spectacular zooarchaeological finds – primarily mammoths, along with the remains of cave lions, bears, and more – but also extensive dating and environmental data, as well as evidence to suggest the presence of Neanderthals. Because the site was found in a disused pit of the quarry, the team was able to leave no stone unturned during excavation and the same can be said for this final report.
Mammoths and Neanderthals in the Thames Valley: excavations at Stanton Harcourt, Oxfordshire, Katharine Scott and Christine M Buckingham, Archaeopress, £45 (e-book: free), ISBN 978-1789699647.
Review by KK.