From the author of Britain BC, Britain AD and Britain in the Middle Ages comes the fourth and final part in a critically acclaimed series on Britain's hidden past
The relevance of archaeology to the study of the ancient world is indisputable. But, when exploring our recent past, does it have any role to play? In The Birth of Modern Britain Francis Pryor highlights archaeology s continued importance to the world around us.
The pioneers of the Industrial Revolution were too busy innovating to record what was happening around them but fortunately the buildings and machines they left behind bring the period to life. During the Second World War, the imminent threat of invasion meant that constructing strong defences was much more important than keeping precise records. As a result, when towns were flattened, archaeology provided the only real means of discovering what had been destroyed.
Surveying the whole post-medieval period, from 1550 until the present day, Francis Pryor takes us on an exhilarating journey, bringing to a gripping conclusion his illuminating study of Britain s hidden past.
Francis Pryor has spent 30 years studying the prehistory of the Fens. He has excavated sites as diverse as Bronze Age farms, field systems and entire Iron Age villages. From 1980 he turned his attention to pre-Roman religion. In 1982, while working in a drainage dyke at Flag Fen, on the outskirts of Peterborough, he discovered the waterlogged timbers of a Bronze Age religious site. In 1987, with his wife Maisie Taylor, he set up the Fenland Archaeological Trust, which opened Flag Fen to the public. He appears frequently on TV's 'Time Team' and is the author of 'Seahenge' as well as 'Britain BC', 'Britain AD' and 'Britain in the Middle Ages'.
'Hugely enjoyable...You will learn a lot from it - and one of the things is how much work has gone into unearthing all this stuff. You will certainly never look at the A5 in the same way again' Daily Telegraph 'No one person has previously attempted such a journey into Britain's entire archaeological past, and this book brings the series to a successful - and refreshingly jargon-free - conclusion' BBC History magazine '[Pryor's] enthusiasm for getting his hands dirty is infectious' Sunday Times 'Much to admire...fascinating details' Guardian 'Immensely fascinating case histories' Daily Express
BIRTH OF MODERN BRITAIN
A Journey Through Britain's Remarkable Recent Archaeology
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Illustrations (chiefly col.), maps