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Recording and analysis of ship graffiti in St Thomas’ church and Blackfriars Barn undercroft in Winchelsea, East Sussex, UK

Dhoop, Thomas, Cooper, Catriona and Copeland, Penny (2016) Recording and analysis of ship graffiti in St Thomas’ church and Blackfriars Barn undercroft in Winchelsea, East Sussex, UK International Journal of Nautical Archaeology, 45, (2), pp. 296-309. (doi:10.1111/1095-9270.12179).

Record type: Article


Two assemblages of ship graffiti were recorded using Reflectance Transformation Imaging (RTI) in the ancient port town of Winchelsea. The engravings show characteristics common to most medieval ship graffiti in England, while displaying a certain variety in the level of detail and quality in which ships can be represented using this medium, encouraging a nuanced understanding. It is suggested that, despite these complexities, the ship graffiti demonstrate a multifaceted relationship with the sea. The St Thomas’ church graffiti could have been a means of spiritual protection and a devotional practice that cuts across different communities of practice and social groups, while the seascape in Blackfriars Barn undercroft can be interpreted as an occasion of informal remembrance of the mustering of a large naval fleet before setting out.

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Accepted/In Press date: 1 May 2016
e-pub ahead of print date: 29 June 2016
Published date: September 2016
Keywords: ship depictions, graffiti, churches, undercrofts, reflectance transformation imaging
Organisations: Archaeology


Local EPrints ID: 399592
ISSN: 1057-2414
PURE UUID: 1a0d7419-68cf-41ba-bffd-d5aa18101477

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Date deposited: 23 Aug 2016 08:19
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 18:21

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Author: Thomas Dhoop
Author: Catriona Cooper
Author: Penny Copeland

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