Don't believe everything you are told! Ask “Where is the EVIDENCE?”

  • We need to look for clues and evidence from the past to find out about how people used to live. Sometimes there is evidence in the landscape and on buildings and in place names.
  • Sometimes we look at objects, known as “Artefacts” or “Finds”.
  • Some periods of history, (see Timeline), have left us lots of artefacts. In general, the more recent a time period is, the more artefacts there are, for example we are surrounded by buildings and objects from the industrial and modern ages.

    When you click on the timeline you can see pictures of some of the many objects found in the Harbour area.
    Try your luck on the Fiendish Finds Quiz below!
  • For more information, contact Fishbourne Roman Palace, Chichester District Museum or visit other local websites. See Useful Links in the Teachers Section.

Timelines: Evidence

Time Periods
Stone Age stone age 450,000 - 2000 B.C.
Bronze Age bronze age 2000 - 600 B.C
Iron Age iron age 600 - 43 A.D.
Roman Age roman age 43 A.D. - 410 A.D.
Saxon and Viking Age saxon age 410 - 1066 A.D.
Medieval Age medieval age 1066 - 1484 A.D.
Industrial Age bronze age 1484 - 1899 A.D.
Modern Age modern age 1900 - Today

 

talking point Talking Point
“Why are there so many more artefacts from the Roman Age than from the later Saxon Age?”
challenge Fiendish Finds
Test your skill in this Quiz, the answers are at the bottom of the page.

 

stone age Stone Age

 

 

Flint hand axe from Apuldram

Palaeolithic 450,000 – 12,000 BC

Flint hand axe from Apuldram

Hunting groups used hand axes for butchering animals. In the Palaeolithic Age they ate large animals such as rein deer.

Can you guess why these axes are called “Hand Axes”?
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Flint borer from West Wittering

Flint borer from West Wittering

Note the sharp point on this flint tool, it may have had many uses. Perhaps it was used to make holes in animal skins.

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Flint borer from West Wittering

Flint Scraper from West Wittering

Scrapers had a sharpened edge. They were held in the hand and may have been used to remove meat from animal skins, so that the skins could be used.

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Kept at Chichester District Museum. Axe from Cobnor Axe from Cobnor

This axe was polished. If you compare it with the axe from Apuldram you can see the difference. Archaeologists wonder why people would have spent hours polishing an axe. Was such an axe used, (it would have worked better than a chipped axe,) or was it to show how important the owner was?

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Flint Microliths from Apuldram

Mesolithic 12,000 – 4,000 BC

Flint Microliths from Apuldram

During the middle stone age (mesolithic) new types of Flint tools called “microliths” started to be used. Micro means “small” and lith means “stone”. These tiny flint blades were put onto wooden shafts making a tool similar to a saw blade today.

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Mesolithic scraper from Apuldram Mesolithic scraper from Apuldram

This flint scraper was used for preparing animal skins by removing the animals meat. During the Mesolithic Age the climate got warmer and people hunted red deer, and wild pig.

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Flint blades from Apuldram Flint blades from Apuldram

These longer flint blades are part of a collection of 166 Mesolithic flints found at Apuldram. Stone tools were versatile and may have been used for any appropriate task. Think of tools today, a needle may have one main use - sewing, but if you need a sharp point for another reason you would also use the needle for that job.

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Flint Core from Apuldram Flint Core from Apuldram

A flint core is the piece of flint left behind when many small flint blades have been removed. You can see the different sides of this core showing the shape and size of flint pieces which have been removed.

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Retouched flakes from Chidham Beach

Neolithic 4,000 – 2,000 BC

Retouched flakes from Chidham Beach

These flint flakes have been removed from the flint core and then reshaped to give them a sharper edge. They may have been used to prepare wooden arrow shafts or fish traps.

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Flint Cores from Chidham Flint Cores from Chidham

These flint cores and other flints on the beach at Chidham suggests that people in the Neolithic age were using the salt marsh area, preparing tools and dealing with meat or fish there. There is no evidence that people were living there all year round.

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Scrapers from Chidham Scrapers from Chidham

Scrapers were used for tasks needing a sharp edge, such as preparing animal skins. In the Neolithic Age people started to farm, as well as hunting and gathering. This changed the way in which they lived as well as the type of food which they ate. They also mined flint underground to use and to trade for other things.

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Pottery from Chidham Pottery from Chidham

This is stone age pottery, part of a large pot. Neolithic people were producing more than enough food to eat, which gave them some spare food to trade for other goods.The grit was added to the clay to strengthen it.

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Pottery from Chidham Pottery from Chidham

This pottery is thick and rough; it has a slight curve, which could mean it was part of a large bowl. It could have been used for food preparation and storage.

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Neolithic Axe from Fishbourne Neolithic Axe from Fishbourne

This flint axe head was polished to make it smooth. It would have been hafted, this means it would have been fixed with glue or string onto a handle.

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Polished Axe Head from Apuldram Polished Axe Head from Apuldram

Flint Axe head polished with sand. To make a polished flint axe head, a piece of rough flint must be shaped by hitting it with another piece then chipped around the edge to make itsharp. Polishing must have taken many hours. This probably means that a polished axe would have been worth a lot to its owner.

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bronze age Bronze Age 2,000 – 600 BC

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