Could we have survived the Iron Age?
To try to answer this question Flodden YAC Branch carried out some experimental archaeology!
Using replica artefacts, we discovered how Iron Age people undertook everyday tasks like baking bread and making cloth for clothes.
We started our session by looking at some real Iron Age finds from Archaeology Scotland - they were fascinating! We studied some Iron Age pig’s teeth and discussed how our diet affects the condition of our teeth (really interesting evidence for an archaeologist!).
Iron Age Clothes
We then talked about how people in the Iron Age made clothes. Lizzy, our assistant leader and expert in all things Prehistoric, brought in some wool for us to look at and some drop spindles which were used to spin wool. Then it was our turn to have a go!…
Spinning with a drop spindle was really tricky and it made us think about how long it would have taken to make cloth for clothes in the Iron Age. As well as spinning, we also tried felting with wool, making some simple felt beads by rolling wool, soaked in hot water over and over and over again!
Iron Age Bread
Finally, we talked about Iron Age bread making before having a go at grinding our own corn! We used both a saddle quern and rotary quern to see which one was the best – the rotary quern won. But it was still pretty time consuming and a lot of time would have been spent every day making flour for bread!
So, could we have survived in the Iron Age?… perhaps, but we’d be completely exhausted at the end of the day!
Blog by Jane Miller, Flodden YAC Leader
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