Fire Exit


“You officers that are stationed, in front of the stage behind the barricade. You will go to Mr Maurice Shapiro, the first aid man and he will furnish you with earplugs, so as to keep you from having a headache. (If) he runs out of earplugs he has got some cotton; you can use that. We have a detention room, set up within the Colosseum. Any persons that you arrest, for ejection, will be brought to room D. Is that understood? You will take their names, their addresses and their telephone numbers. We will not allow any dancing. Running up and down the aisles. Is that Clear with everybody?

Thank you.”


For Whom The Bell Tolls

Echo and Report

Continuity, the relationship between the past and the present.

Makes the archeology of Yeaviring predictable.

Archeology has a tomorrow and an idea of how far an archeologist can throw a trowel can be measured.


The Collector and The Collected

Past in the Present, was the standard conference/ call for papers type heading in my undergraduate days. Memory would also have the same heading applied.

My predictive powers are poor I have less idea of what archeology looks like now.

Data has come from two excavations, strong resulting 70/ 80’s tone.  Destructive nature of investigation, expense and scale, empirical data is slight, fragmented and often distant in time. Dealing with a historical element of the subject itself as much as with the empirical/ scientific  aspects of the data.


The Incapacity of Buildings

There were a series of timber buildings constructed on the site that were excavated by archaeologists in the mid 20th century.

Building A1 was initially a “plain, aisled hall, devoid of annexes” which had a doorway situated on every wall. It was a large building, with wall timbers that were 5.5 to 6 inches thick set in trenches that varied from between 36 and 42 inches deep. After burning down in a fire, it was rebuilt “more robustly and precisely”, with additional eastern and western annexes being added. Excavators found that daub had apparently been used on the walls, being plastered on to the timber. This too burned down at some point, following which a third version of Building A1 was erected, containing only one annexe, on the eastern side. This final building would in time come to rot away where it stood.[11]

Building A2 was a Great Hall with partitioning palisades that created ante-chambers at its two ends. Rather than being destroyed in a fire, it is apparent that the building was intentionally demolished most likely because “in a new phase of construction” at the site, “it had ceased to be useful.”[12] Archaeological excavators discovered that this building had been built on top of an earlier prehistoric burial pit.[13] Building A3 was also a Great Hall, and resembled a “larger and more elaborate version” of the second construction of Building A1. It was apparently destroyed in a fire, before being rebuilt and although some repairs were made in subsequent years, it gradually decayed in situ.[14] Building A4 was similar to A2 in most respects, but had only one partition, located on its eastern end.[15] However, Building A5 differed from these Great Halls, being described as “a house or even a cottage” by Hope-Taylor, and it apparently had a door on each of its walls.[16] Buildings A6 and A7 were identified as being older than A5, but were of a similar size.[17] Building B was another hall, this time with a western annexe.[18]

Building C1 was a rectangular pit, leading archaeologists to speculate that it was the site of a water tank or cistern, and the presence of a layer of white ash led them to surmise that it had burnt down.[19] Building C2 was another rectangular building like most of those at Yeavering, and had four doors, although unlike many of the others showed no evidence of having been damaged or destroyed by fire.[20] Building C3 was also a rectangular timber hall, although was larger than C2 and was of “unusual construction”, having double rows of external post-holes.[21] Building C4 was the largest hall in this group, having seen two structural phases, the former of which had apparently been heavily damaged or destroyed by fire.[22]

Building D1 was described by Hope-Taylor as being an example of “strange incompetence” due to the various mistakes that apparently occurred during its construction. Although likely intended to be rectangular, from the post hole evidence it is apparent that the finished result was rhomboidal, and it appears that not long after construction, the building collapsed or was demolished, to be replaced by another hall, which also exhibited various structural problems such as wonky walls.[23]

Building D2 was designed as “the exact counterpart of Building D1 in size, form and orientation”, and the two were positioned in a precise alignment. It was however at some point demolished, and a new “massive and elaborate” version was built in its place.[24] Building D2 has been widely interpreted as a temple or shrine room dedicated to one or more of the gods of Anglo-Saxon paganism, making it the only known example of such a site yet found by archaeologists in England.[25][26] Archaeologists came to this conclusion due to the complete lack of any objects associated with normal domestic use, such as a scatter of animal bones of broken pot sherds. Accompanying this was a large pit filled with animal bones, the majority of which were oxen skulls.[27]

Building E was situated in the centre of the township, and consisted of nine foundation trenches that were each concentric in shape. From the positioning, depth and width of the post holes, the excavators came to the conclusion that the building was a large tiered seating area facing a platform that may have carried a throne.[28]

There is also a feature referred to as the Great Enclosure by Hope-Taylor, consisting of a circular earthwork with an entrance at the southern end. In the middle of this enclosure was a rectangular timber building, known as Building BC, which the excavators believed was contemporary with the rest of the enclosure.


Wiki Yeavering

Space (In Mind)

Scale and Inflection?

Near or Far? Close or distant? Large/ Small? Public/Private?

A personal space/ A symbolic space?

What it seems to be is a space where the calculation between the real and the imagined is repeatedly and habitually made.

What sort of space is Yeavering bell?

So far words seem to fail me here, in regard to physical space. Terms lack the scale, inflection and fluidity of sound terms.

The Walker

So great was then the fervour of the faith, as is reported and the desire of the washing of salvation among the nation of the Northumbrians, that Paulinas at a certain time coming with the king and queen to the royal country-seat, which is called Ad Gefrin, stayed with them thirty-six days, fully occupied in catechising and baptising; during which days, from morning till night, he did nothing else but instruct the people resorting from all villages and places, in Christ’s saving word; and when instructed, he washed them with the water of absolution in the river Glen which is close. This town, under the following kings, was abandoned, and another was built instead of it, at the place called Melmin

Bede, Ecclesiastical History of the English Nation


Ad Gefrin stood at the base of Yeavering bell, an Iron age hillfort stood on the site, later an Anglo- Saxon seat of royal power.