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Transhumance to Farmstead: Landscape and the Medieval Resettlement of Dartmoor

Author(s): Kathryn Catlin

Year: 2014

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Dartmoor was permanently resettled by peasants and tenant farmers during the 10th and 11th centuries, following hundreds of years of seasonal use of the moor as transhumant pasture. This paper explores how previous knowledge of the landscape on the part of shepherds (and shepherdesses) affected the choices made by later permanent settlers. Peasant choices were also constrained by the priorities of manorial lords and overseers, who had their own ideas about where best to establish settlements to increase the prosperity of the manor. These often conflicting priorities reflected fundamentally different experiences of the landscape. A historically situated, multiscalar approach to medieval Dartmoor shows how dimensions of social difference, including class and gender, were contested and negotiated on, within, and through the landscape.

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Transhumance to Farmstead: Landscape and the Medieval Resettlement of Dartmoor. Kathryn Catlin. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. 2014 ( tDAR id: 436931)

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): SYM-38,11

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America