Showing posts from September, 2019

John de Courcy & The Infinite Monkey Theorem – a case of plagiarism in popular publishing

John de Courcy arriving at Carrickfergus Castle (Photo: Author) When I first lodged a complaint of plagiarism against Prof Andrew Bevan and a number of his colleagues at UCL and University of Portsmouth I had no real idea where it was going to go [ read more here ]. I certainly had no inclination that it would leave me with the reputation as a staunch advocate for the rights of the plagiarised. Since the publication of that piece, I have been honoured to receive the trust of several researchers who have shared their experiences. I have attempted to listen with compassion and give the best, most constructive advice I possibly could. All the while my disgust at plagiarism and plagiarisers has only intensified and grown. It was in this guise that my dear friend, Dr Nic Wright, recently contacted me. He had been doing some light reading on John de Courcy, that well-known Anglo-Norman knight and general trouble maker who arrived in Ireland at the end of the 12th century and went on t

My Dark Places

This is not an archaeology post, but I hope you’ll read it anyway. In August this year the magnificent Punk survivors Stiff Little Fingers finished their current tour on home ground at the ‘Putting the Fast in Belfast’ festival at Custom House Square. This is the third such event and I’ve been lucky enough to attend them all. Going back before that they’ve been playing one particular song since 2014 and always with a similar themed introduction. I though it was time that Jake Burns’ words were allowed to speak beyond SLF fans to whatever little audience I can provide. Here’s what he said in Belfast on August 24th 2019: “The next tune was never supposed to see the light of day. It was written just for something for me to keep to myself. But we went ahead and recorded it and I’m really glad we did and I’ll tell you for why. It’s a song I wrote to deal with the fact that I suffer from depression. It’s a thing that’s bugged me for abut four or five years now, if not lon

Clowning about in Galway | Excavating an archive from Summer 1994

< Full Collection Here This is not really an archaeology post, so feel free to ignore! A few years back, I came into possession of a USB negative scanner. I kinda bought it on a whim from a friend and, once it had arrived, I thought it was going to be another gadget that 'I must get around to using', but would be destined to sit there gathering dust. Part of my regret in buying it was focused on the fact that I had no real idea where my surviving collection of negatives had migrated to over the years. They were probably in the house ... somewhere. I had a memory of seeing them several years previously, but where they were now was anyone's guess. No more than an hour later I moved a cardboard box that had been sitting happily and unobtrusively in the middle of my office floor and found - much to my surprise - that it contained pretty much my entire surviving archive of my non-archaeology photography. I took the coincident appearance of the negativ

Co Louth: Archaeological Objects at The British Museum

The British Museum holds 13 items identified as coming from Co Louth. The majority of these (4) are assigned to the Bronze Age, followed by the Early Medieval period (3). The most common object type represented are palstaves (3), followed by floor-tiles and spear-heads (2 each). Only two material types are represented in this assemblage: Metal (11) and Pottery (2). < Table of Contents Bronze Age: Metal items Drogheda spear-head 18551220.210 Copper alloy socketed spearhead, pegged. Drogheda palstave 18551220.230 Copper alloy palstave. Drogheda sword 18551220.200 Copper alloy sword fragment; only the butt and a portion of the blade survive. There are four rivet-holes in the butt. The edges of the blade have been badly dam