Journal

Diving on the wreck of the Charles P. Minch (1898), Tobermory, Canada

These pictures show my daughter in August 2014 on the wreck of the Charles P. Minch, a wooden schooner that went down in 1898 in Tecumseh Cove off Cove Island in Lake Huron, Ontario. Most of the wreckage lies in 7 to 15 m depth, and in common with the other wrecks here is exceptionally well-preserved in the cold fresh water. Many thanks to the crew from Diver's Den in Tobermory for making this such a great outing for us!

 

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THE LAST GOSPEL: shipwreck evidence for literacy in the ancient world

I’ve just finished reading Bryan Ward-Perkins’ excellent The Fall of Rome (Oxford University Press, 2006) in which he uses archaeological evidence to argue – very persuasively, in my view – that the end of the western Roman empire in the 5th century AD was not a period of ‘transition’ but rather one of devastation and economic collapse, in terms that Edward Gibbon would have understood almost three centuries ago when he wrote The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. Gibbon, of course, had no archaeological data at his disposal, but the number of excavations and syntheses now published has allowed historians such as Ward-Perkins to use the evidence with confidence, seeing patterns for example in pottery distribution that can be related to wider questions about the workings of the ancient economy as a whole ...

 

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PHARAOH: interview with David Gibbins

Interview with David Gibbins on Parmenion Books

First question: what was the inspiration for Jack Howard?

There’s a good deal of me in Jack – we share a diving and archaeological background, and have many of the same historical and intellectual interests. But I very much think of him as a separate fictional character, drawn from my experience of others in our profession. Like many leaders Jack can be solitary and introspective, but his friendships are intense and down-to-earth and a driving force in the novels. What Jack and I share most is a passion for archaeology and the determination to see a project through, and that’s where I identify most closely with him ...

 

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A new shipwreck site of the 17th century

I’ve just returned from a very exciting week of diving and underwater discovery. For some time now I’ve been on the trail of a shipwreck reported years ago by divers but never investigated. Three days ago I finally found it, having very nearly swum over the site without seeing it on the final day of diving ...

 

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