Archaeology Books

  • SOBI
    (1)
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    This evocative book is written by one of television's best-loved archaeologists and presenters, Neil Oliver. Neil beautifully writes a personal account of what makes the British Isles so special and why he believes it is the best place in the world.

    Told through the places that have witnessed the unfolding of British history, this book begins with the footprints of humankind's earliest ancestors and continues through to the development of religion, the transition of the industrial revolution and the outbreak of two World Wars.

    Stunningly written, Neil's book features majestic recounts of history, spanning from windswept headlands and battlefields to ancient trees and magnificent cathedrals.
  • AWIAO
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    For more than 4,000 years the pyramids of Giza have stood like giant question marks that have intrigued and endlessly fascinated people. Who exactly built them? When? Why? And how did they create these colossal structures? But the pyramids are not a complete mystery - the stones, the hieroglyphs, the landscape and even the layers of sand and debris hold stories for us to read. Mark Lehner and Zahi Hawass, with over four decades of involvement with Giza, provide their unique and personal insight into the site, bringing together all the information and evidence to create a record unparalleled in its detail and scope. The celebrated Great Pyramid of Khufu, or Cheops, is the only one of the seven wonders of the ancient world still standing, but there is much more to Giza. We may think of the pyramids as rising from the desert, isolated and enigmatic, yet they were surrounded by temples, tombs, vast cemeteries and even teeming towns of the living. All are described in detail here and brought back to life, with hundreds of illustrations including detailed photographs of the monuments, excavations and objects, as well as plans, reconstructions and the latest images from remote-controlled cameras and laser scans. Through the ages, Giza and the pyramids have inspired the most extraordinary speculations and wild theories, but here, finally, in this prestigious publication, is the full story as told by the evidence on the ground, by the leading authorities on the site.
  • BJPAW
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    The third volume of the Le Yaudet excavation reports details the history and archaeology of the site from AD 300 until the present day. The promontory overlooking the estuary of the river Leguer was reoccupied in the late fourth century, possibly by a military detachment from Britain, and thereafter developed as an ecclesiastical site in the fifth to eighth centuries. In the later medieval period it became a village clustered around the chapel. The report presents the archaeological and material evidence for these periods in detail.
  • AFUYC
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    Building and architecture flourished throughtout the Roman Empire. The Romans discovered new techniques to solve problems but also to impress the world. They built aqueducts to bring water into their cities and towns, grand baths for cleansing and socialising and elaborate villas for the cream of their society. In this book, scientist and archaeologist Tony Rook takes the reader through Roman building techniques. He explores the structures that were found throughout the Roman Empire, including roads, bridges and aqueducts as well as the Romans' answer to under-floor heating - the hypocaust - and vaults, domes, tiles and pipes. Lavishly illustrated with stunning photographs and the author's own detailed line drawings, Roman Building techniques looks at Roman innovations, practices and materials in a thorough yet readable way.
  • AKXGD
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    Organized into six thematic sections, The Great Archaeologists gives short, vivid biographies and fresh assessments of the achievements of 70 of the worlds greatest practitioners, written by a 40-strong team of contributors, themselves all eminent archaeologists and authors. All these archaeologists very different individuals, and often in deep disagreement with one another have established the subject as a scientific discipline and vastly broadened and deepened our knowledge of the human past. Authoritative and entertaining, this is a book for anyone fascinated by the human past and its discovery.
  • ATIYZ
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    * A band of Nazi archaeologists on a secret mission to Tibet* Others searching for Atlantis the 'home of the Nordic race'* Excavations in Czechoslovakia to find 'Germanic culture'* Sacred Sanskrit texts as keys to Nordic roots and Ancient Indian civilizationDuring the 1930s, in the build up to World War II, the Nazis established a band of specialists, the SS-Ahnenerbe, under the command of Heinrich Himmler and Hermann Wirth. Their aim was nothing less than to prove the superiority of the Aryan race, and with it the unique right of the German people to rule Europe. The occult figured as a key feature in many of these increasingly desperate quack "research" efforts. Part "science," part espionage, and part fantasy. Archaeological expeditions were sent to Iceland, Tibet, Kafiristan, North Africa, Russia, the Far East, Egypt, and even South America and the Arctic.The Nazi "Ancestral Heritage Society's" chief administrator was Dr. Wolfram Sievers, who cruelly conducted medical experiments on prisoners in concentration camps, and was responsible for the looting of historic artefacts considered "Germanic" for "return" to Germany.He rewarded those academics that took part with high military office, whilst those academics who contradicted or criticized the SS-Anenerbe were carted off to concentration camps where they faced certain death. This book tells the true history of the real life villains behind the Indiana Jones movies. Sometimes truth really is stranger than fiction!
  • BGXWC
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    Martin J Smith argues that the study of human remains is the purest, most reliable and unbiased source of evidence for the reality of conflict in the past. He outlines its value to the new science of Battlefield Archaeology and the wider understanding of historical conflict. He outlines the processes used in examining osteological remains to unlock the clues about what the combatants endured. Drawing on case studies spanning the millennia, the author shows how skeletal remains can often tell us, in chilling detail, exactly what a warrior suffered in his final moments (though often the evidence of healed wounds from previous battles is just as striking). This enriches our understanding of the human experience of battle as well as providing scientific data on the effects of various weapons on the human body. This is a book written with scientific rigour by a leading archaeologist but it will appeal equally to students of archaeology and the military historian with an interest in the brutal face of battle.
  • BHAOK
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    A new narrative history of the Viking Age, interwoven with exploration of the physical remains and landscapes that the Vikings fashioned and walked: their rune-stones and ship burials, settlements and battlefields. To many, the word 'Viking' brings to mind red scenes of rape and pillage, of marauders from beyond the sea rampaging around the British coastline in the last gloomy centuries before the Norman Conquest. And it is true that Britain in the Viking Age was a turbulent, violent place. The kings and warlords who have impressed their memories on the period revel in names that fire the blood and stir the imagination: Svein Forkbeard and Edmund Ironside, Ivar the Boneless and Alfred the Great, Erik Bloodaxe and Edgar the Pacifier amongst many others. Evidence for their brutality, their dominance, their avarice and their pride is still unearthed from British soil with stunning regularity. This is not, however, the whole story. In Viking Britain, Thomas Williams has drawn on his experience as Project Curator of the major international exhibition Vikings: Life and Legend to show how the people we call Vikings came not just to raid and plunder, but to settle, to colonize and to rule. The impact on these islands was profound and enduring, shaping British social, cultural and political development for hundreds of years. Indeed, in language, literature, place-names and folk-lore, the presence of Scandinavian settlers can still be felt, and their memory - filtered and refashioned through the writings of people like J.R.R. Tolkien, William Morris and G.K.Chesterton - has transformed the western imagination. This remarkable new book draws upon new academic research and first-hand experience, drawing deeply from the relics and landscapes that the Vikings and their contemporaries fashioned and walked: their rune stones and ship burials, settlements and battlefields, poems and chronicles. The book offers a vital evocation of a forgotten world, its echoes in later history and its implications for the present. It is a stunning exploration of Viking Britain by a writer of immense literary power.
  • BPXUP
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    Tutankhamun puts the boy king's short life into context by describing and explaining the complexities of life in Ancient Egypt. Covering the work of earlier Egyptologists, it details the actual discovery and original expedition, drawing on the personal archives of Howard Carter himself. On 26 November 1922, Howard Carter and Lord Carnarvon discovered the tomb of Tutankhamun. The world was entranced. Never before had a tomb been found in such a perfect condition, with all the richness of its contents still intact. The stories that have since grown up around the discovery of the tomb and of the boy king who lay undisturbed for over 3,000 years have become legendary and continue to fire imaginations around the world. This book tells those stories, and uncovers the reality behind them.
  • BRHEL
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    * Trajan's Column unravelled * Taken from Metal casts b the direction of Napoleon III * Details of Roman Arms and Accoutrements * Artillery and Siege Trains, Siege Engines, Systems of Fortifications * The wars in Dacia, including the bridges over the Danube * Soldiers Kit * Laying of roads * Fortifications and much more
  • BUIID
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    Julia Blackburn has always collected things that hold stories about the past, especially the very distant past: mammoth bones, little shells that happen to be two million years old, a flint shaped as a weapon long ago. Time Song brings many such stories together as it tells of the creation, the existence and the loss of a country now called Doggerland, a huge and fertile area that once connected the entire east coast of England with mainland Europe, until it was finally submerged by rising sea levels around 5000 BC. Blackburn mixes fragments from her own life with a series of eighteen `songs' and all sorts of stories about the places and the people she meets in her quest to get closer to an understanding of Doggerland. She sees the footprints of early humans fossilised in the soft mud of an estuary alongside the scattered pockmarks made by rain falling eight thousand years ago. She visits a cave where the remnants of a Neanderthal meal have turned to stone. In Denmark she sits beside Tollund Man who seems to be about to wake from a dream, even though he has lain in a peat bog since the start of the Iron Age. Time Song reveals yet again, that Julia Blackburn is one of the most original writers in Britain, with each of its pages bringing a surprise, an epiphany, a phrase of such beauty and simple profundity you can only gasp.
  • AWDCX
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    The Book of the Dead of Sobekmose, in the collection of the Brooklyn Museum, New York, is one of the most important surviving examples of the ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead genre. Such 'books' - papyrus scrolls - were composed of traditional funerary texts, including magic spells, that were thought to assist a dead person on their journey into the afterlife. The ancient Egyptians believed in an underworld fraught with dangers that needed to be carefully navigated, from the familiar, such as snakes and scorpions, to the extraordinary: lakes of fire to cross, animal-headed demons to pass and, of course, the ritual Weighing of the Heart, whose outcome determined whether or not the deceased would be 'born again' into the afterlife for eternity. This publication is the first to offer a continuous English translation of a single, extensive, major text that can speak to us from beginning to end in the order in which it was composed. The papyrus itself is one of the longest of its kind to come down to us from the New Kingdom, a time when Egypt's international power and prosperity were at their peak. This new translation not only represents a great step forward in the study of these texts, but also grants modern readers a direct encounter with what can seem a remote and alien civilization. With language that is, in many places, unquestionably evocative and very beautiful, it offers a look into the mindset of the ancient Egyptians, highlighting their beliefs and anxieties about this world as well as the next.
  • BRZSK
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    The ancient city of Angkor in Cambodia has fascinated scholars and visitors alike since its rediscovery in the mid-19th century. All are wonderstruck by the beauty and multiplicity of the sculptures that adorn its temples and structures and are overwhelmed by the sheer size of Angkor. There is nothing to equal it in the archaeological world. A great deal was already known about the history of Angkor and the brilliant Khmer civilization that built it thanks to pioneering work by archaeologists and scholars, but our knowledge has now been completely revolutionized by cutting-edge technology. Airborne laser scanning (LiDAR) has revealed entire cities that were previously unknown and a complex urban landscape with highways and waterways, profoundly transforming our interpretations of the development and supposed decline of Angkor. In this comprehensively updated edition of Angkor and the Khmer Civilization, respected archaeologist Michael Coe is joined by Damian Evans, who led this remarkable programme of scientific exploration, to present for the first time in book form the results and implications of these ground-breaking discoveries that are rewriting history.
  • BUJAL
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    The Great Pyramid Manual takes the technical description and historical interpretation of the last `Great Wonder of the Ancient World' to the next level. Lavishly illustrated with the most accurate architectural diagrams and three-dimensional reconstructions currently available, the book pays tribute to the greatest iconic work of human culture. The Great Pyramid was the world's tallest monument for nearly 4,000 years. Until the 19th century, it was also the heaviest structure ever built. It was the central component of a huge funerary complex called Akhet Khufu, `Khufu's Horizon', by the ancient Egyptians. Over time, the plateau around it developed into an enormous necropolis, a true city of the dead. While many great monuments were built alongside it, none have surpassed it. The authors first set out the architectural history that preceded the Great Pyramid, and show how Khufu's tomb was the end-result of many centuries of cultural developments. An awe-inspiring tradition of pharaonic tomb construction reached its zenith during an intense phase of activity in the 26th century BC. The details of what happened over those decades have fascinated explorers, scholars, engineers, and scientists, for centuries. In this manual, the unprecedented technical abilities required to create these unsurpassable monuments are finally uncovered. The details of Old Kingdom pyramid construction are reverse-engineered, their internal architecture is described and illustrated using the latest evidence and the best available scholarship, and the true abilities of the ancient builders are slowly made apparent. Here is the most up-to-date description of the Great Pyramid, featuring discussions of the best current theories that explain unusual aspects of its internal layout, including its most enigmatic features. The theological and ritual context in which these great funerary monuments were built is also addressed, and explained. Finally, the history of all those who have explored the monument over the centuries is chronicled, from the accounts of the first travellers and archaeologists, to the high-tech research projects carried out in more recent decades. The Great Pyramid remains the largest, oldest, and only surviving Wonder of the Ancient World, ranking amongst the greatest cultural legacies of human history. Here is the definitive insight into Khufu's colossal tomb.
  • BFZIE
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    From the pyramids in the north to the temples in the south, ancient artisans left their marks all over Egypt, unique marks that reveal craftsmanship we would be hard pressed to duplicate today. Drawing together the results of more than 30 years of research and nine field study journeys to Egypt, Christopher Dunn presents a stunning stone-by-stone analysis of key Egyptian monuments, including the statue of Ramses II at Luxor and the fallen crowns that lay at its feet. His modern-day engineering expertise provides a unique view into the sophisticated technology used to create these famous monuments in prehistoric times. Using modern digital photography, computer-aided design software, and metrology instruments, Dunn exposes the extreme precision of these monuments and the type of advanced manufacturing expertise necessary to produce them. His computer analysis of the statues of Ramses II reveals that the left and right sides of the faces are precise mirror images of each other, and his examination of the mysterious underground tunnels of the Serapeum illuminates the finest examples of precision engineering on the planet. Providing never-before-seen evidence in the form of more than 280 photographs, Dunn's research shows that while absent from the archaeological record, highly refined tools, techniques, and even mega-machines must have been used in ancient Egypt.
  • BTYJL
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    Nearly 13,000 years ago millions of people and animals were wiped out, and the world plunged abruptly into a new ice-age. It was more than a thousand years before the climate, and mankind, recovered. The people of Gobekli Tepe in present-day southern Turkey, whose ancestors witnessed this catastrophe, built a megalithic monument formed of many hammer-shaped pillars decorated with symbols as a memorial to this terrible event. Before long, they also invented agriculture, and their new farming culture spread rapidly across the continent, signalling the arrival of civilisation. Before abandoning Gobekli Tepe thousands of years later, they covered it completely with rubble to preserve the greatest and most important story ever told for future generations. Archaeological excavations began at the site in 1994, and we are now able to read their story, more amazing than any Hollywood plot, again for the first time in over 10,000 years. It is a story of survival and resurgence that allows one of the world's greatest scientific puzzles - the meaning of ancient artworks, from the 40,000 year-old Lion-man figurine of Hohlenstein-Stadel cave in Germany to the Great Sphinx of Giza - to be solved. We now know what happened to these people. It probably had happened many times before and since, and it could happen again, to us. The conventional view of prehistory is a sham; we have been duped by centuries of misguided scholarship. The world is actually a much more dangerous place than we have been led to believe. The old myths and legends, of cataclysm and conflagration, are surprisingly accurate. We know this because, at last, we can read an extremely ancient code assumed by scholars to be nothing more than depictions of wild animals. A code hiding in plain sight that reveals we have hardly changed in 40,000 years. A code that changes everything.
  • BMMOQ
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    A detailed history with fascinating insights and a gorgeous visual reference, this book tours the sacred Egyptian sites, from the impressive mortuary temples of the pharaohs to those dedicated to the many gods and goddesses.It includes an in-depth examination of the crucial role that religious belief and mythology played during this intriguing period of ancient history. The allure of ancient Egypt has endured over many centuries - and this authoritative volume offers further intriguing insights. It delves into the tombs, devoting chapters to the most famous burial sites: Giza, Saqqara and the Valley of the Kings, where the resting place of the boy-king Tutankhamun was discovered. The book also describes Egypt's temples, religions and myths, from the impressive mortuary temples of the pharaohs, such as Ramesses II, to elaborate funerary rituals, offerings and superstitions.With maps, chronologies and artwork supplementing more than 750 photographs, this book captures the essence of a fascinating epoch.
  • BDQAC
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    Where do we find the world's very first art? When, and why, did people begin experimenting with different materials, forms and colours? Were our once-cousins, the Neanderthals, also capable of creating art? Prehistorians have been asking these questions of our ancestors for decades, but only very recently, with the development of cutting-edge scientific and archaeological techniques, have we been able to piece together the first chapter in the story of art. Overturning the traditional Eurocentric vision of our artistic origins, which has focused almost exclusively on the Franco-Spanish cave art, Paul Bahn and Michel Lorblanchet take the reader on a search for the earliest art across the whole world. They show that our earliest ancestors were far from being the creatively impoverished primitives of past accounts, and Europe was by no means the only 'cradle' of art; the artistic impulse developed in the human mind wherever it travelled. The long universal history of art mirrors the development of humanity.
  • BMPFU
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    The Ashmolean Museum is fortunate in having the most comprehensive British collection of the art of the Indian subcontinent outside London. Especially strong in sculpture, this rich representation of Indian art from prehistory to the twentieth century has come about through the generosity of our benefactors over more than three centuries. The Museum's first major Indian sculpture acquisition, a stone Pala-style Vishnu image of the eleventh century, was given in 1686 by Sir William Hedges, a governor of the East India Company in Bengal. From the late nineteenth century, a substantial core of the present collection was assembled at the University's former Indian Institute Museum (1897-1962), precursor of the Department of Eastern Art, which opened within the Ashmolean in 1963. Since that date many more Indian objects of all periods have been acquired by gift, bequest or purchase.
  • BGJIK
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    The Neolithic ('New Stone Age') marks the time when the prehistoric communities of Europe turned their backs on the hunter-gatherer lifestyle that they had followed for many thousands of years, and instead, became farmers. The significance of this switch from a lifestyle that had been based on the hunting and gathering of wild food resources, to one that involved the growing of crops and raising livestock, cannot be underestimated. Although it was a complex process that varied from place to place, there can be little doubt that it was during the Neolithic that the foundations for the incredibly complex modern societies in which we live today were laid. However, we would be wrong to think that the first farming communities of Europe were in tune with nature and each other, as there is a considerable (and growing) body of archaeological data that is indicative of episodes of warfare between these communities. This evidence should not be taken as proof that warfare was endemic across Neolithic Europe, but it does strongly suggest that it was more common than some scholars have proposed. Furthermore, the words of the seventeenth-century English philosopher, Thomas Hobbes, who famously described prehistoric life as 'nasty, brutish, and short', seem rather apt in light of some of the archaeological discoveries from the European Neolithic.
  • BNHCE
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    The Curse of the Pharaoh's Tombs is the definitive book on Ancient Egyptian tomb curses, providing new information and data never before published whilst exploring the many incidents and deaths associated with tomb curses. The book puts the record straight on matters which have been wrongly recorded by others, such as the legend of Tutankhamun, as well as presenting new data never before published associated with matters such as the torment Howard Carter suffered before his death. It also contains exclusive information and interviews with the family members and archaeologists associated with the curses, including experts at the British Museum and Cairo Museum. Paul Harrison also covers the history of Egyptian tomb curses, why they were placed at the entrance to some tombs and not others, as well as the frightening reality of mummification after death in Ancient Egypt. Closer to home, the hundreds of deaths and haunted tube station (Museum) which are associated with the curse of Amen-Ra (housed in the British Museum) is covered along with the mysterious deaths and tragedy associated with Cleopatra's needle on the Embankment of the River Thames.
  • BTMIO
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    The Hittites in the Late Bronze Age became the mightiest military power in the Ancient Near East. Yet their empire was always vulnerable to destruction by enemy forces; their Anatolian homeland occupied a remote region, with no navigable rivers; and they were cut off from the sea. Perhaps most seriously, they suffered chronic under-population and sometimes devastating plague. How, then, can the rise and triumph of this ancient imperium be explained, against seemingly insuperable odds? In his lively and unconventional treatment of one of antiquity's most mysterious civilizations, whose history disappeared from the records over three thousand years ago, Trevor Bryce sheds fresh light on Hittite warriors as well as on the Hittites' social, religious and political culture and offers new solutions to many unsolved questions. Revealing them to have been masters of chariot warfare, who almost inflicted disastrous defeat on Rameses II at the Battle of Qadesh (1274 BCE), he shows the Hittites also to have been devout worshippers of a pantheon of storm-gods and many other gods, and masters of a new diplomatic system which bolstered their authority for centuries. Drawing authoritatively both on texts and on ongoing archaeological discoveries, while at the same time offering imaginative reconstructions of the Hittite world, the author argues that while the development of a warrior culture was essential, not only for the Empire's expansion but for its very survival, this by itself was not enough. The range of skills demanded of the Hittite ruling class went way beyond mere military prowess, while there was much more to the Hittites themselves than just skill in warfare. This engaging volume reveals the Hittites in their full complexity, including the festivals they celebrated; the temples and palaces they built; their customs and superstitions; the crimes they committed; their social hierarchy, from king to slave; and the marriages and pre-nuptial agreements they contracted. It takes the reader on a journey which combines epic grandeur, spectacle and pageantry with an understanding of the intimacies and idiosyncrasies of Hittite daily life.
  • BULEU
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    Since the late 1980s the dominant theory of human origins has been that a 'cognitive revolution' (C.50,000 years ago) led to the advent of our species, Homo sapiens. As a result of this revolution our species spread and eventually replaced all existing archaic Homo species, ultimately leading to the superiority of modern humans. Or so we thought. As Clive Finlayson explains, the latest advances in genetics prove that there was significant interbreeding between Modern Humans and the Neanderthals. All non-Africans today carry some Neanderthal genes. We have also discovered aspects of Neanderthal behaviour that indicate that they were not cognitively inferior to modern humans, as we once thought, and in fact had their own rituals and art. Finlayson, who is at the forefront of this research, recounts the discoveries of his team, providing evidence that Neanderthals caught birds of prey, and used their feathers for symbolic purposes. There is also evidence that Neanderthals practised other forms of art, as the recently discovered engravings in Gorham's Cave Gibraltar indicate. Linking all the recent evidence, The Smart Neanderthal casts a new light on the Neanderthals and the 'Cognitive Revolution'. Finlayson argues that there was no revolution and, instead, modern behaviour arose gradually and independently among different populations of Modern Humans and Neanderthals. Some practices were even adopted by Modern Humans from the Neanderthals. Finlayson overturns classic narratives of human origins, and raises important questions about who we really are.
  • BRHKU
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    King Arthur's Wars describes one of the biggest archaeological finds of our times; yet there is nothing new to see. There are secrets hidden in plain sight. We speak English today, because the Anglo-Saxons took over most of post-Roman Britain. How did that happen? There is little evidence: not much little archaeology, and even less written history. There is, however, a huge amount of speculation. King Arthur's Wars brings an entirely new approach to the subject. The answers are out there, in the countryside, waiting to be found. Months of field work and map study allow us to understand, for the first time, how the Anglo-Saxons conquered England; county by county and decade by decade. King Arthur's Wars exposes what the landscape and the place names tell us. As a result, we can now know far more about this `Dark Age'. What is so special about Essex? Why is Buckinghamshire an odd shape? Why is the legend of King Arthur so special to us? Why don't Cumbrian farmers use English numbers, when they count sheep? Why don't we know where Camelot was? Why did the Romano-British stop eating oysters? King Arthur's Wars tells that story.