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Birds for the Elite? Fowling in the Northern Netherlands in the Roman Period and the Early Middle Ages



In 1991–1993, large-scale excavations were carried out at Wijnaldum-Tjitsma, an artificial dwelling mound (terp) in the north-western part of the province of Friesland in the Netherlands. Several finds of luxury products made clear that in the Early Middle Ages, the site must have been a place of importance.

The excavations yielded a huge amount of well-conserved animal remains, among them many bird bones. In this paper, it will be discussed to what extent the special status of the inhabitants is reflected by the assemblages of bird remains, in particular those of waders. Furthermore, the methods of wildfowling will be discussed, with special attention to the development of the clap-net. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.