Liam Delaney and I are pleased and proud to announce the full online publication of the Offa’s Dyke Journal volume 2 for 2020. This issue was launched with the publication of the first article to appear in time for the Special Offa digital conference in April 2020. Now it is completed and published online. In due course, it will be available for purchase as a print edition via Archaeopress.
The volume comprises an introduction by Howard Williams exploring (i) new literature on linear monuments, frontiers and borderlands; (ii) the activities of the Collaboratory and related projects in 2020; (iii) the coronavirus impact on attitudes and discourses surrounding Offa’s Dyke; (iv) the accelerated debate regarding the decolonisation of the countryside and the role of linear monuments in such discussions for the Anglo-Welsh borderlands; (v) a review of the rest of the journal.
Next, Mark Bell takes us on a journey critiquing the historiography of British linear earthworks, focusing on the Grim’s Ditch of the Chilterns and the Silchester Dykes. Keith Fitzpatrick-Matthews critiques pseudoarchaeological narratives on early medieval linear monuments as either prehistoric canals or Roman frontiers.
Completing a triad of articles exploring pseudoarchaeological and popular perceptions of dykes, Ethan Doyle White surveys and critiques the archaeology and heritage of Kent’s Faesten Dic.
Howard Williams then explores the place-names associated with Wat’s Dyke and Offa’s Dyke in today’s landscapes, identifying the monuments as a distinctive archaeological and toponymic dimension of borderland landscapes and identities.
The volume is closed with two ‘classics revisited’ articles, hitherto unavailable open-access. A revised version of David Hills survey of Wat’s Dyke and Offa’s Dyke in Flintshire is joined by a republication of Tim Malim’s 2007 article on Grim’s Ditch and Wansdyke.
In combination, these provide a rich resource for students and scholars via an open access medium, combining invaluable past work with fresh perspectives and evaluations.