Historic environment and heritage management projects, resources, commentary and analysis by Professors Ian Baxter (Heriot-Watt University) & David Gill (Kent/UEA)
Stanway: ‘The Doctor’s Grave’
There is a reconstruction of the so-called ‘Doctor’s Grave’ in the Colchester Museum. The grave itself was excavated at Stanway. One of the features is the presence of a gaming-board with counters laid out as if the game had been interrupted by the funeral. The cremated remains of the individual were found adjacent to the board. Note the presence of the Roman amphora.
David Gill is Honorary Professor in the Centre for Heritage at the University of Kent, and Honorary Research Fellow in the School of History and an Academic Associate in SISJAC at UEA; Professor of Archaeological Heritage.
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3 thoughts on “Stanway: ‘The Doctor’s Grave’”
Any possibility that this board was intended for the famous game Fidchell?
I have sent your comment to a colleague. Thank you for the suggestion.
A colleague has sent this to me:
Fidchell is one of the tafl family of games; it is played on a 7×7 board, attested in the archaeological record Ireland. As far as I’m aware, there’s no board or board fragments at Sutton Hoo, so we can’t guesstimate the number of squares from the size of a playing piece, and there was only one intact piece (the rest are fragments from an indeterminate number of pieces).
My article, “A game on the edge: an attempt to unravel the Gordian Knot of tafl games” Board Game Studies Journal 15 (2021) may be of interest.
Btw, your note sent me back to Youngs’ account in the large Sutton Hoo report, and has given me something to think about in relation to the Salme ship burial! 😉