Skip to main content
Article thumbnail
Location of Repository

Luminescence Dating of Medieval and Early Modern Brickwork

By THOMAS GURLING

Abstract

Essex is a county rich in significant historic brickwork spanning the medieval period. A great deal of earlier archaeological study has focused on the development and use of brick during this period, providing a framework of understanding as to how this material was employed in Essex through the medieval period. However, the common approaches adopted to date historic brick have several caveats that can potentially limit the amount of information they can provide. This presented an opportunity to apply the scientific dating technique of optically stimulated luminescence in order to derive absolute dates for important medieval brick sites in Essex. This in turn would allow this framework of understanding surrounding medieval brick to be critically examined and revised where necessary.\ud \ud A series of important brick buildings that spanned the 11th through to the 16th century were selected for inclusion in this thesis. The buildings were studied from an archaeological perspective, deriving likely dates for their erection and development, before samples of the brickwork were taken. These were subsequently dated by luminescence. In light of the luminescence dates, the archaeological evaluations of the buildings were reviewed and revised where necessary.\ud \ud The results have shown that medieval brick was introduced much earlier than had previously been suspected. This has refuted the long held notion that the Cistercians were responsible for introducing brick in the 12th century and has led to suggestions of a small scale, late Saxon brick industry. It was also apparent that, whilst being manufactured, brick was also being re-used to a large extent throughout the medieval period, especially in the 16th century. Whilst this is likely to be largely due to practical motivational factors, other esoteric social aspects are also likely to have played a role, such as the Great Rebuilding

Topics: Medieval brick, optically stimulated luminescence (OSL), Essex
Year: 2009
OAI identifier: oai:etheses.dur.ac.uk:180
Provided by: Durham e-Theses

Suggested articles

Citations

  1. 1710, An Ecclesiastical Parochial History of the Diocese of London.
  2. 1740, The History and Antiquities of
  3. 1768, The History and Antiquities of the County of Essex.
  4. 1769-1772, A History of Essex.
  5. 1770, Dissertation, by the Dean of Exeter, on the Antiquity of Brick Buildings in England, posterior to the Time of the Romans. Archaeologia I:
  6. 1773, The Antiquities of England and
  7. 1780, Antiquities of England and
  8. 1814, The History of Essex.
  9. 1836, History of
  10. 1858, Architectural Account of the Remains of Coggeshall Abbey.
  11. 1863, Eastbury Hall.
  12. 1864, Essex Wills: Clement Sysley, of Eastbury Hall,
  13. (1997). 1865, Architectural notes on Layer Marney Hall, Essex; and on the Parish Church adjoining.
  14. 1869, Ancient Wills.
  15. 1872, On Eastbury Manor House,
  16. 1878, Historical evidence of the date of erection of certain church towers and of church restoration in Essex chiefly in the 15 th and early part of the 16 th Centuries.
  17. 1890, A History of Coggeshall.
  18. 1892a,
  19. 1892b, doi
  20. 1894, Essex Churches: All Saints,
  21. 1895, East Horndon.
  22. 1918b, Nether Hall.
  23. 1985a, Brick Tower Houses of the later Middle Ages. Period Home
  24. 1985b, The Medieval Brickmaking Industry in England:
  25. 1999a, Brick in Essex: The Clayworking Craftsmen and Gazetteer of Sites.
  26. 1999b, Woodham Walter Hall – its site and setting.
  27. 2000b, New Hall….an historic building in perspective. Lecture transcript in New
  28. 2005a, The use and manufacture of brick in eastern England in the Middle Ages.
  29. 2005b, Billericay St. Mary Magdalen, the Spanish tiles over the doorway.
  30. 2006a, Luminescence date calculation, brick, spreadsheet ver. 4. Unpublished software application,
  31. 2006b, Luminescence date calculation, brick, spreadsheet ver. 5. Unpublished software application,
  32. (1993). A ‘principia’ at Boreham,
  33. (1993). A Brick and Tile Typology for Cressing Temple. In
  34. (1913). A Brief Memoir of the Mildmay Family. London, The Bodley Head.
  35. (1983). A Fayre House, Buylt by Sir Thomas Smith’: The Development of Hill Hall, doi
  36. (1991). A Fragmentary Medieval Grave Cover and the Site of Woodham Walter Church.
  37. (1961). A History of Building Materials. doi
  38. (1939). A Medieval brick-yard at Hull.
  39. (2001). A medieval octagonal chimney stack: evidence from Pleshey and Writtle.
  40. (1965). A Medieval Tile Kiln at
  41. (1991). A Prospect of Maldon:
  42. (1949). A Short History of All Saints’ Church, Springfield,
  43. (1923). A Short History of Renaissance Architecture in
  44. (1950). A Short History of Tilty Abbey.
  45. (2006). A technique for distinguishing the texture of bricks and tiles. doi
  46. (1961). A Thirteenth-Century Tile Kiln Site at North Grange,
  47. (1976). A trial excavation at Boreham,
  48. (1974). A Typology of Brick: with numerical coding of brick characteristics.
  49. (1989). A Village History: Woodham Walter.
  50. (1998). Age Determination of Young Rocks and Artefacts. doi
  51. (1998). An Introduction to Optical Dating. doi
  52. (1965). Anglo Saxon Architecture (Vol. I). Cambridge, doi
  53. (1986). Anglo-Saxon church building: aspects of design and construction.
  54. (2007). Archaeomagnetic dating of Dogmersfield Park brick kiln (Southern England). doi
  55. (2000). Aspects of the Production, Evolution and Use of Ceramic Building Materials in the Middle Ages.
  56. (2002). Barkingwic? Saxon and medieval features adjacent to Barking Abbey.
  57. (2007). Bayesian Buildings: An introduction for the numerically challenged. doi
  58. (2007). Below Ground at Beeleigh. Maldon Archaeological and Historical Group.
  59. (2003). Beta doses to spherical grains. doi
  60. (1982). Beta-TLD Apparatus for Small Samples.
  61. (1972). Brick Building in
  62. (1996). Brick in Essex: From the Roman Conquest to the Reformation.
  63. (1987). Brick Nogging in the Fifteenth and Sixteenth Centuries, with examples drawn mainly from Essex.
  64. (1998). Brickmaking Accounts for Wisbech,
  65. (1997). Brickmaking in Leicestershire before 1710.
  66. (1975). Bricks of Eastern England to the end of the Middle Ages.
  67. (1994). Brickwork: History, Technology and Practice (Vol.
  68. (1972). British Monumental Brasses.
  69. (1979). Brixworth Church-are the bricks really Roman?
  70. (1952). Building in England. doi
  71. (1952). Caister Castle. doi
  72. (1984). Calcium diffusion: A new dating method for archaeological materials. doi
  73. (2009). Ceramic building materials in early medieval churches in northwestern France and south-eastern England. Application of luminescence dating to building archaeology. Unpublished PhD. Thesis, doi
  74. (1993). Ceramic Building Materials: Post-Roman bricks.
  75. (1974). Chelmsford Dominican Priory: The Excavation of the Reredorter,
  76. (2008). Chemical and mineralogical characterisation of weathered historical bricks from the Venice lagoonal environment. doi
  77. (1989). Churches in the Landscape. doi
  78. (2008). Cistercian and Medieval Brick Architecture
  79. (2002). Cistercian Europe: Architecture of Contemplation. doi
  80. (1997). Civic Buildings and Courtier Houses: new techniques and materials for architectural ornament. In
  81. (1955). Coggeshall Abbey and its Early Brickwork.
  82. (2007). Coggeshall Abbey: The development of the house.
  83. (1943). Colne Church and its Builders.
  84. (1937). Colne Priory, Essex, and the Burials of the Earls of Oxford. doi
  85. (2000). Dating bricks of the last two millennia from Newcastle upon Tyne: a preliminary study. doi
  86. (2001). Dendrochronology and Other Applications of Tree-ring Studies in Archaeology.
  87. (1998). Dendrochronology: guidelines on producing and interpreting dendrochronology dates.
  88. (1998). Dose-rate conversion factors: update.
  89. (1913). Earls Colne Church.
  90. (1989). Early brick chimney stacks.
  91. (2001). Early Recycling: the Anglo-Saxon and Norman Re-use of Roman Bricks with Special Reference to Hertfordshire.
  92. (1906). Eastbury House.
  93. (1990). Ecclesiastical History of the English People. Translated by Sherley-Price, L.,
  94. (1974). Elizabethan Earls Colne (Part 1).
  95. (1923). English Brick Buildings: Henry VII-VIII. doi
  96. (2004). English Castles. doi
  97. (1980). English Historic Carpentry. doi
  98. (1937). English Homes: Periods I and II (Vol. II) Medieval and Early Tudor 1066-1558.
  99. (1951). Essex Bricks.
  100. (2008). Excavating an Elizabethan building boom: Copped Hall.
  101. (1991). Excavations and the West Range.
  102. (1969). Excavations at King John’s Hunting Lodge, doi
  103. (1977). Excavations at Pleshey Castle.
  104. (2003). Excavations at the Borelli Yard, Farnham: the tile kiln.
  105. (1977). Excavations in the vicarage garden at Brixworth,
  106. (1909). Faulkbourne Hall.
  107. (2004). Geophysical Survey Report: Coggeshall Abbey. Colchester, Colchester Archaeological Group.
  108. (1996). Glazed Eleventh-Century Wall Tiles from London.
  109. (2000). Greater Medieval Houses of England and Wales: Vol. II. Cambridge, doi
  110. (2006). Greater Medieval Houses of England and Wales: Vol. III. Cambridge, doi
  111. (1988). Guide to All Saints’ East Horndon,
  112. (1977). Historic Churches: a wasting asset.
  113. History of the New Hall Community of Canonesses Regular of the Holy Sephulchre. Roehampton,
  114. (1998). Holy Trinity Church, Bradwell-juxta-Coggeshall: A Survey of the Fabric and Appraisal of the Norman Brickwork.
  115. (2000). Houses and Households in County Durham and Newcastle c.1570-1730. Unpublished PhD. Thesis,
  116. (1979). Hussey Tower, Boston: a Late Medieval Tower-House of Brick.
  117. (1936). Interesting Tudor newel staircase at Maldon Moot Hall.
  118. (1995). Interlaboratory beta source calibration using TL and OSL on natural quartz. doi
  119. (1998). International Commission on Radiation Units and Measurements (ICRU), doi
  120. (2003). Kinetics of Moisture Expansion in Fired Clay Ceramics: A (Time) 1/4 Law. Physical Review Letters 90. doi
  121. (1981). Late Anglo-Saxon finds from the site of St.
  122. (1915). Layer Marney Tower.
  123. (1998). Little Wenham Hall, A Reinterpretation.
  124. (2004). Luminescence Dating of Brick Chimneys. doi
  125. (2000). Luminescence dating of quartz using an improved single-aliquot regenerative-dose protocol. doi
  126. (2001). Luminescence dating of Somero sacristy, SW Finland using the 210ºC TL peak of quartz. doi
  127. (1998). Magnetic Investigations and Datings of a Brick Kiln at Valdbæk near Esbjerg (Denmark). doi
  128. (2001). Magnetic Properties and Archaeomagnetism. doi
  129. (2007). Maldon’s Moot Hall: Observations on the Repairs of 2006. Essex County Council: Historic Buildings and Conservation Report.
  130. (1999). Manors, Mills and Manuscripts Series: Coggeshall Abbey and Abbey Mill.
  131. (2007). Master William Pykenham,
  132. (2005). Medieval Brick-Building in the Central Alps. doi
  133. (1992). Medieval deposits on the banks of the Cornmill stream, Waltham Abbey.
  134. (1972). Medieval Gothic Mouldings: A Guide.
  135. (1992). Medieval Monasteries. doi
  136. (2005). Medieval Town Walls: An Archaeological and Social History of Urban Defence. doi
  137. (2007). Methodological Developments in the Luminescence Dating of Brick from English Late-Medieval and Post-Medieval Buildings. doi
  138. (2003). Monastic Architecture: Destruction and Reconstruction.
  139. (1972). Monastic Grange and Outer Close Excavations,
  140. (2007). Mortar dating using AMS 14C and sequential dissolution: examples from medieval, non-hydraulic lime mortars from the Åland Islands,
  141. (1903). Nether Hall in Roydon: Notes from the Inquisitions.
  142. (2004). Nether Hall. A fortified manor of the Wars of the Roses.
  143. (1907). New Hall, Essex – Real and Imaginary.
  144. (1986). Old Copped Hall: The Site of the Tudor Mansion.
  145. On some badges and devices of the de Veres, on the tower of Castle Hedingham Church.
  146. (2008). On the internal radioactivity in quartz. doi
  147. (2002). Optically Stimulated Luminescence Dating of Brick from Sixteenth-Century Chimneys: A Feasibility Study. Unpublished undergraduate dissertation,
  148. Pedigree of Marney.
  149. (2005). Period House Fixtures and Fittings 1300-1900.
  150. (2005). Period House: how to repair, restore and care for your home.
  151. (1986). Plaster or Stone? Some observations on Layer Marney Church and Tower.
  152. (2000). Plundering the Past: Roman Stonework in Medieval Britain.
  153. (1993). Pre-Conquest glazed relief tiles from All Saints church, pavement, doi
  154. (1978). Proceedures for Comparing and Combining Radiocarbon Age Determinations: A Critique. doi
  155. (2001). Radiation in archaeometry: archaeological dating. doi
  156. (1992). Radon concentrations inside castles and other ancient buildings. doi
  157. (2002). Re-used Bedrock Ballast in King’s Lynn’s ‘Town Wall’ and the Norfolk Port’s Medieval Trading Links. doi
  158. (1999). Recycling the Monasteries: Demolition and Reuse by the Tudor Government,
  159. (1962). Regis (The Life of King Edward). Translated by doi
  160. (2003). Research report: Magnetic investigations and the age of a medieval kiln at Kungahälla (south-west Sweden). doi
  161. (1985). Rivenhall: Investigations of a villa, church and village Vol. doi
  162. (1975). Robert D’Arcy’s Chantry Priests’ House,
  163. (2006). Roman and early medieval bricks and tiles: can they be distinguished?
  164. (2001). Roman bricks from the Lagoon of Venice: a chemical characterisation with methods of multivariate analysis. doi
  165. (2000). Romanesque Churches of The Loire and Western France.
  166. (1916). Royal Commission on Historic Monuments doi
  167. (1990). Rubbish Recycled: A Study of the Re-Use of Stone in Lincolnshire. In
  168. (1975). Rye House, Hertfordshire, and Aspects of Early Brickwork in England.
  169. (1988). Saint Andrew’s Church.
  170. (1990). Science-based Dating in Archaeology. doi
  171. (1968). Sixteenth Century Terra-Cotta Tombs in East Anglia.
  172. (1900). Some Additions to Newcourt’s Repertorium-Volume II.
  173. (1909). Some interesting Essex brasses.
  174. (2001). Some late 12 th- or early 13 th-century great brick at Farnham Castle, Surrey.
  175. (1993). Specimens of Freedom to Crenellate by Licence.
  176. (2000). The Archaeology of Buildings.
  177. (1983). The Architecture of the Anglo Saxons. doi
  178. (1997). The arrangement of monuments and seating at St. Andrew’s church, Earls Colne, during the 17 th and early 18 th centuries.
  179. (1915). The Augustinian Priory of Little Leez and the Mansion of Leez Priory.
  180. (1913). The Benedictine Abbey of Barking: A Sketch of its Architectural History and Account of Recent Excavations on its Site.
  181. The Bourchier vault.
  182. (1960). The Building Accounts of Tattershall Castle. doi
  183. (1961). The Buildings of England: doi
  184. (2000). The Buildings of Rural Ingatestone, Essex, 1556-1601: ‘Great Rebuilding’ or ‘Housing Revolution’? doi
  185. (1999). The Carmelite Friary at Maldon: excavations 1990-1.
  186. (1988). The Changing Face of New Hall.
  187. (1988). The Cow Tower, Norwich: a detailed survey and partial reinterpretation.
  188. (1960). The Date of “Fox’s Tower,”
  189. (1993). The De Veres of Castle Hedingham.
  190. (1980). The Distribution of Brick Bonds in England up to 1800. doi
  191. (1976). The Early Brickwork of Someries Castle, Bedfordshire, and its Place in the History of English Brick Building.
  192. (1987). The Early Tudor Country House: Architecture and Politics 1490-1550. doi
  193. (1996). The East Window of Saint Nicholas
  194. (1974). The English Country House: An art and a way of life. London,
  195. (1988). The English Parish Church in the 11 th and Early 12 th Centuries: A Great Rebuilding? In
  196. (1999). The Essex Landscape: A study of its form and history. doi
  197. (1923). The excavation of foundations on the castle-keep at Pleshey.
  198. (1997). The Gentry House in the Age of Transition.
  199. (1994). The great rebuildings of Tudor and Stuart England. doi
  200. (2007). The history of chimneys in Essex.
  201. (1963). The History of the King’s Works Vol. II: The Middle Ages. doi
  202. (1907). The Itinerary of
  203. (1987). The Making of the Essex Landscape.
  204. (2002). The Manufacture and Dating of English Brickwork 1600-1720.
  205. (2008). The Medieval Town Wall of Great
  206. (2001). The Occurrence of Roman Brick and Tile in Churches of the London Basin. doi
  207. (2007). The Olde House,
  208. (1990). The optical dating of sediments using quartz. doi
  209. (2001). The precinct and buildings of Tilty Abbey.
  210. (1981). The production of brick and tile in medieval England. doi
  211. (1980). The Progress of Brick.
  212. (1953). The Rebuilding of Rural England. doi
  213. (1982). The reconstruction of some Saxon buildings at Goltho,
  214. (1921). The Remains of Coggeshall Abbey.
  215. (1973). The Restoration of Hertford Castle Gatehouse.
  216. (1993). The Royal Palaces of Tudor England. doi
  217. (2003). The single aliquot regenerative dose protocol: potential for improvements in reliability. doi
  218. (1933). The Testament and Last Will of Elizabeth, widow of John de Veer, Thirteenth Earl of Oxford. doi
  219. (1995). The Tudor and Jacobean Country House: A Building History.
  220. (1981). Thermoluminescence Dating in Architectural History: Venetian Villas. doi
  221. (2000). Thermoluminescence dating of terrazzo from the monastery church of Tegernsee (Bavaria, Germany) using the 210°C TL peak of quartz. doi
  222. (1978). Thermoluminescence dating: radioactivity in quartz. doi
  223. (1985). Thermoluminescence Dating. doi
  224. (2007). TL-dating applied to building archaeology: The case of the medieval church Notre-Dame-Sous-Terre (Mont-Saint-Michel, doi
  225. (1992). Traditional Buildings of Britain: An Introduction to Vernacular Architecture.
  226. (2001). Trapped Charge Dating
  227. (1997). Tree Ring Analysis of Eastbury Manor House, Barking, Greater London.
  228. (1997). Tree Ring Dates from Sheffield University. doi
  229. (1961). Tudor secretary: Sir William Petre at court and home. doi
  230. (2003). Understanding Small Period Houses.
  231. (1980). Use of thermoluminescence dosimetry for evaluation of internal beta dose-rate in archaeological dating. doi
  232. (2008). Using the TL single-aliquot regenerative-dose protocol for the verification of the chronology of the Teutonic Order castle in Malbork. doi
  233. (1945). Victoria County History:
  234. (1907). Victoria County History: County of Essex Vol. doi
  235. (1969). Victoria County History: County of York - East Riding Vol. I The City of Kingston Upon Hull. London, doi
  236. (1990). Wharram Percy: Deserted Medieval Village. doi

To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.