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Bewcastle Cross
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: A runic standing cross monument in the churchyard of Bewcastle, Northumberland, northern England, dating from the late 7th or early 8th century. Although the top of the cross has been lost, the 15-foot (4.5-meter) shaft remains, with distinct panels of the figures of Christ in Majesty, St. John the Baptist, and St. John the Evangelist, while on the back there is an inhabited vinescroll. Like the Ruthwell Cross, that at Bewcastle possesses a poem inscribed in Runic script. The worn inscription suggests that the monument was a memorial to Alchfrith, son of Oswiu of Northumbria, and his wife Cyneburh (Cyniburug). It is one of the finest examples of Early Christian Northumbrian art.
DEFINITION: An Upper Palaeolithic rock shelter at Castelmerle, southwest France. There were two Aurignacian levels with art objects of carved or painted stone. The art from Castanet and neighboring Blanchard rock shelter is amongst the earliest known, dating c 33,000 BC.
DEFINITION: An Early Bronze Age settlement and cemetery of rock-cut tombs near Syracuse, Sicily. Excavated by Orsi in 1891-1892, the cemetery contained several hundred tombs used for collective burial and one tomb had a carved facade and several were closed by slabs with carved double spirals. The characteristic pottery was a buff ware painted with black or green lines and designs. Pottery shapes included splay-necked cups and pedestaled bowls. There were also bossed bone plaques, showing connections with the Aegean world well before 2000 BC.
Castor box
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: A shallow vessel in color-coated ware ( Nene Valley Ware) with a fitting lid of Roman date. Usually both box and lid were rouletted.
Castor ware
CATEGORY: ceramics
DEFINITION: A distinctive pottery named after a Roman settlement site on the north bank of the Nene in Northhamptonshire. Castor ware is a slate-colored pottery which commonly had hunting scenes of dogs, boars, etc. on the outer surface, which were applied by squeezing paste from a bag or applying by brush. The E barbotine hunt cups were a highlight of the native Romano-British potter's craft.
Civita Castellana
DEFINITION: A site near Rome, originally the capital of the Faliscans, the 9th-century-BC Falerii Veteres. It was reputedly founded by the Pelasgians from Argos. The Faliscans were a tribe belonging to the Etruscan confederation against Rome. The city was destroyed by the Romans in 395 BC and again in 241 BC. Faliscan vases have been found in its rich necropolis.
El Castillo
DEFINITION: Cave site in northern Spain, spanning the entire Palaeolithic. Its earliest Aurignacian material has been dated to c 38,700 bp. There are engravings and paintings of the Upper Palaeolithic, c 20,000-10,000 BC, in the caves.
Maiden Castle
DEFINITION: One of the largest and most famous Iron Age hillforts in Britain, located in Dorset, England. The oldest structure on the hilltop is a Neolithic causewayed camp (c 2000-1500 BC), followed after an interval by an earthen long barrow, which is partly built over the ditches of the earlier camp. Occupation resumed in the Early Iron Age (c 5th century BC) with the construction of a hillfort (c 250 BC) which was later extended to fortify the entire hill. Maiden Castle was at that time a permanent settlement with stone and wooden huts linked by surfaced trackways. Sometime before 50 BC, the site came under the control of the Belgae and became the tribal capital of the Durotriges, with coinage and imported Gallo-Roman luxuries. During the Roman conquest, the fort was sacked by Vespasian's legion (43-44 AD), and the slain defenders were buried in a cemetery near the east gate. The Romans moved the remaining population to a new site at Durnovaria (Dorchester), and the hillfort was abandoned until the 4th century AD when a Romano-Celtic temple was built there.
brain endocast
CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: A cast of the cranial cavity (inner surface of the cranium) to produce an accurate image of and the approximate shape of the brain. These are made by pouring latex rubber into a skull. The fossil record can yield endocranial casts and, from them, possible brain volumes - especially of early man.
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: A molded object
DEFINITION: Social class with clearly delineated boundaries; one is usually born into a caste and ascribed social and economic roles on the basis of caste affiliation. It is difficult or impossible to ascend from one caste to a higher one.
CATEGORY: ceramics
DEFINITION: A pronounced vertical appendage on the rim of a vessel, much like the part of a castle wall.
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: A small swiveled wheel (often one of a set) fixed to a leg (or the underside) of a piece of furniture
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: Casting consists of pouring molten metal into a mold, where it solidifies into the shape of the mold. The process was well established in the Bronze Age (beginning c 3000 BC), when it was used to form bronze pieces. It is particularly valuable for the economical production of complex shapes, from mass-produced parts to one-of-a-kind items or even large machinery. Three principal techniques of casting were successively developed in prehistoric Europe: one-piece stone molds for flat-faced objects; clay or stone piece molds that could be dismantled and reused; and one-off clay molds for complex shapes made in one piece around a wax or lead pattern (cire perdue). Every metal with a low enough melting point was exploited in early Europe, except iron and steel, was used for casting artifacts.
casting flash
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: casting jet, casting seam
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: A thin irregular ridge of metal on the outer face of a casting, resulting from seepage of the molten metal into the joint between the separate components of the mould used in its manufacture. A casting jet is similar but is a small plug of metal that originally filled the gate or aperture used to fill the mould. During the final cleaning and finishing of a cast object the jet and flash are usually knocked off and filed smooth.
casting jet
CATEGORY: artifact; geology
DEFINITION: A plug of metal which is knocked out after an artifact is cast and which fits exactly into the opening (aperture or gate) of a mold. When casting metal into a bivalve or composite mold, the aperture through which the metal is poured into the mold becomes filled up with molten metal, and this plug of metal cools and hardens with the object. When the finished artifact is removed from the mold, the casting jet is still attached; in most cases it is knocked off and the scar polished down the metal plug being melted down for re-use. In some cases, however, it may be left on, particularly on neck rings and bracelets. Examples are sometimes in founder's hoards.
casting seam
CATEGORY: artifact; geology
DEFINITION: The place where a small amount of molten metal will run into the joint between the surfaces of the parts of the casting mold. In a bivalve or composite mold, this seepage results in a visible seam when the object is removed from the mold. It is usually filled and polished off; unfinished objects are often found with a visible seam or ridge.
casting-on technique
CATEGORY: artifact; geology
DEFINITION: A method used in a secondary stage of making metal objects for adding handles, legs, and hilts to complex artifacts. A clay mold is placed around part of an existing object and molten metal is then poured in and fuses onto the original object.
CATEGORY: structure
DEFINITION: A medieval European structure, generally the residence of a king or a lord of the territory. The word 'castle' is derived from Latin 'castellum', a fortified camp, and there are various linguistic forms, including chateau, castello, castrum, and burg. These medieval strongholds developed rapidly from the 9th century. The word is sometimes applied to prehistoric earthworks, such as Maiden Castle, England. Castles developed with the feudal system which installed a societal classification in which land and other privileges were granted in return for military service. Castle architecture had three essential elements: a tower (keep or donjon), residence for the noble, and a fortified enclosure wall. The first late Carolingian types were likely modeled on the fortified homesteads of the Slavs, and in the 10th century the manor or principal house was then set up on a raised mound within the enclosure. This motte and bailey type was introduced to France in the 11th century. The Normans then it to the British Isles and southern Italy and also built stone keeps within their enclosures. Later 12th-century castles in France and England have large stone walls gateways modeled on Arabic and Byzantine forts and massive circular central keeps. Multiple walls with strengthened gateways are an invention of the mid-13th century. The introduction of the cannon and other firearms in the 15th and 16th centuries made castles vulnerable to attack. Castle architecture was revised with low walls which could be defended all around by artillery the guns mounted on bastions and redans.
DEFINITION: Portuguese term for a fortified site, ranging from the small walled citadels of the Copper Age (e.g. Vila Nova de Sao Pedro) to the hillfort settlements of the Celtic Iron Age.
DEFINITION: An internal cast, as of the inside of the human skull. A cast of the cranial cavity showing the approximate shape of the brain.
leaching cast
CATEGORY: geology
DEFINITION: Soil or sediment leached down from above by some mechanism.
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: mile fort, mile castle
CATEGORY: structure
DEFINITION: A fortlet (small fort) set at intervals of one Roman mile along a major well-defended frontier - such as Hadrian's Wall. They measured 60-70 x 50-60 ft. A roadway passed through the center of the milecastle and through the wall itself, with gateways at both entrances. There were two barrack buildings parallel with the road. In one corner, next to the wall, was a stairway up to the wall top; in the other was the cookhouse. It is estimated that 30-100 men could be accommodated in each milecastle.
rough-cast ware
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: Pottery decoration consisting of small particles of dried clay or gritty material dusted over the surface of a vessel, generally under a slip coating.

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