• Beowulf and archaeology: Megaliths imagined and encountered in early medieval Europe

      Williams, Howard; University of Chester (Oxford University Press, 2015-10-01)
      The dragon’s lair in the epic Anglo-Saxon poem Beowulf has been widely interpreted to reflect engagement with Neolithic megalithic architecture. Embodying the poet’s sense of the past, the stone barrow (Old English: stānbeorh) of the dragon has been taken to reveal mythological and legendary attributions to megalithic monuments as the works of giants and haunts of dragons in the early medieval world. This chapter reconsiders this argument, showing how the dragon’s mound invoked a biography of successive pasts and significances as treasure hoard, monstrous dwelling, place of exile, theft, conflict and death. Only subsequently does the mound serve as the starting-point for the funeral of Beowulf involving his cremation ceremony and mound-raising nearby. The biography of the dragon’s barrow is a literary one, in which inherited prehistoric megaliths were counter-tombs, antithetical to contemporary stone architectures containing the bodies of kings, queens and the relics of saints.
    • Building for the Cremated Dead Ephemeral and Cumulative Constructions

      Wessman, Anna; Williams, Howard; University of Helsinki; University of Chester (Oxford University Press, 2017-06-27)
      Building for the Cremated Dead Ephemeral and Cumulative Constructions
    • The Contemporary Archaeology of Urban Cremation

      Williams, Howard; Wessman, Anna; University of Chester; University of Helsinki (Oxford University Press, 2017-04-27)
      The Contemporary Archaeology of Urban Cremation
    • Cremation and the Use of Fire in Mesolithic Mortuary Practices in North-West Europe

      Gray Jones, Amy; University of Chester (Oxford University Press, 2017-04-27)
      Cremation is not widely recognized as a form of mortuary treatment amongst the hunter-gatherer communities of Mesolithic north-west Europe (broadly defined as c.9300 cal. BC to c.4000 cal. BC). However, discoveries within the last two decades have increased the evidence for the practice of cremation (as well as other forms of treatment, such as secondary burial) amongst the hunter-gatherers of the Mesolithic, both in terms of the geographic distribution of the practice and its temporal spread throughout the period. Although rare in comparison to inhumation, cremation can now be seen to have been practiced throughout both the early and late Mesolithic and, whilst evidence is currently sparse within the modern areas of Germany and the British Isles, examples are known across Scandinavia, the Netherlands, Belgium, northern France, and the Republic of Ireland. The aim of this chapter is not to present a comprehensive catalogue of cremations in the Mesolithic, but rather to draw on a number of case studies to provide an overview of cremation practices, and the variety of post-cremation treatment of cremated remains, and to place this within the context of other forms of Mesolithic mortuary practice.
    • Death, memory and material culture: Catalytic commemoration and the cremated dead

      Williams, Howard; University of Chester (Oxford University Press, 2013-06-06)
    • Fighting a lost battle: The Reichsbund juedischer Frontsoldaten and the rise of National Socialism

      Grady, Tim; University of Chester (Oxford University Press, 2010-03-01)
      This article argues that the actions of the German-Jewish war veterans’ association, the Reichsbund jüdischer Frontsoldaten (RjF), who have been strongly criticised because of their response to National Socialism, need to be understood in the light of the confusing mixed signals that shaped the first years of National Socialist rule.
    • Firing the Imagination: Cremation in the Museum

      Williams, Howard; University of Chester (Oxford University Press, 2016-06-09)
      This volume addresses the relationship between archaeologists and the dead, through the many dimensions of their relationships: in the field (through practical and legal issues), in the lab (through their analysis and interpretation), and in their written, visual and exhibitionary practice--disseminated to a variety of academic and public audiences. Written from a variety of perspectives, its authors address the experience, effect, ethical considerations, and cultural politics of working with mortuary archaeology. Whilst some papers reflect institutional or organizational approaches, others are more personal in their view: creating exciting and frank insights into contemporary issues that have hitherto often remained "unspoken" among the discipline. Reframing funerary archaeologists as "death-workers" of a kind, the contributors reflect on their own experience to provide both guidance and inspiration to future practitioners, arguing strongly that we have a central role to play in engaging the public with themes of mortality and commemoration, through the lens of the past. Spurred by the recent debates in the UK, papers from Scandinavia, Austria, Italy, the US, and the mid-Atlantic, frame these issues within a much wider international context that highlights the importance of cultural and historical context in which this work takes place.
    • Introduction: Archaeologies of Cremation

      Williams, Howard; Cerezo-Román, Jessica I.; Wessman, Anna; University of Chester; CalPol; University of Helsinki (Oxford University Press, 2017-04-27)
      Introduction to the edited collection 'Cremation and the Archaeology of Death'
    • Introduction: Mortuary Archaeology in Contemporary Society

      Giles, Melanie; Williams, Howard; University of Manchester; University of Chester (Oxford University Press, 2016-06-09)
      n/a
    • Kingship, Society, and the Church in Anglo-Saxon Yorkshire

      Pickles, Thomas; University of Chester (Oxford University Press, 2018-11-15)
      A monograph about the relationship between social and political structures, conversion to Christianity, and the building of an institutional Church in Yorkshire from c. 450-c. 1066.
    • Policing Chartism, 1839-1848: The role of the 'specials' reconsidered

      Swift, Roger; University of Chester (Oxford University Press, 2007-06-01)
    • Review: Nicole Discenza, Inhabited Spaces: Anglo-Saxon Constructions of Place

      Pickles, Thomas; University of Chester (Oxford University Press, 2019-03-25)
      A book review.