Individual project 4: Assembly and colonisation
IP4 - Assembly and Colonisation (AD 800-1500) - will explore the establishment of the Norse thing organisation and assembly sites in the areas of Norse settlement and colonisation, compared and contrasted to the situation in the Viking homelands, and set within the wider context of assembly in Northern Europe.
The site of Tingwall, Shetland.
Dr. Alexandra Sanmark will carry out fieldwork at a select number of sites in Scotland and the North Atlantic islands. The significance of assemblies for conflict resolution, particularly in newly colonised areas, will be highlighted.
The thing places established in these areas will be studied in order to establish if the settlers used sites already monumentalised by the local population or whether they created new ones. In what ways did they define and monumentalise their assemblies and how were they developed, remembered and celebrated over time?
The impact of Christianity on the design of the thing sites and the thing proceedings will also be examined.