What is

Melting Pot?

This project will use cutting-edge bioarchaeological and materials-science techniques to undertake the first systematic and interdisciplinary study of the role of food and cooking in forging social relationships in Viking-Age Britain.

Though often seen in purely nutritional terms - in both archaeology and contemporary policy making - food is central to the production of identity, This is especially true in contexts of migration and culture contact, and is thus an important but overlooked element in the study of the Viking Age.


Understanding of this period is fundamental to the study of later and contemporary culture. The Viking Age was the social, economic, political, and religious crucible of English and wider European society.


Using cutting-edge scientific techniques to identify manufacturing techniques, wear analysis to characterise mode of use, and analysis of lipid residues to establish vessel contents, we will strategically record, sample, and analyse a large quantity of pottery from well-stratified sites across the British Isles and Scandinavia.