The lost lochs of Scotland: tracking land-use change and its effects on the archaeological record

Michael J. Stratigos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

This paper examines how loch drainage in eighteenth and nineteenth century Scotland has shaped the archaeological record, with particular reference to lake dwellings known as ‘crannogs’. The analysis uses the Roy Military Survey of Scotland (1747–1755) as a baseline for charting changes to lacustrine environment through time. The work is unique for its scale which examines all of mainland Scotland, and the results have revealed unrecognized patterns in the timing and intensity of land-use changes that have impacted lacustrine environments. These patterns are linked to the development of archaeological investigation in Scotland demonstrating that the current distribution of crannogs across the country is an artefact of loch drainage and antiquarian investigation and not representative of the past distribution of these critical sites. This paper presents one way in which we can begin to account for these historic changes to land-use and their impact to our understanding of the archaeological record.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)33-51
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Wetland Archaeology
Volume16
Issue number1
Early online date11 Nov 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Keywords

  • loch drainage
  • crannogs
  • Scotland
  • improvement period
  • Roy Map
  • agricultural practices
  • wetland environment
  • lake dwellings

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