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The Archaeology of the Medieval Hospitals of England and Wales, 1066-1546

Huggon, Martin (2018) The Archaeology of the Medieval Hospitals of England and Wales, 1066-1546. PhD thesis, University of Sheffield.

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Abstract

This thesis provides the first comprehensive synthesis of the archaeology of the medieval hospitals of England and Wales in two decades, bringing together a broad array of academic publication and grey literature reports. Since Gilchrist’s (1995) summary of the archaeological evidence, there has been an increasing examination of these institutions from a historical perspective, investigating the constitutional origins of these sites, their place within the spiritual economy, the nature of medical practice carried out, founders and patronage, and regional variations and dedications. However, the utilisation of the archaeological remains has seen relatively little advancement, despite a surge in developer-funded excavation that has seen the numbers of sites investigated increase. By drawing upon these resources, as well as other published excavations, this research has tested and devised a new conceptual framework for how the hospital was set out architecturally. It proposes that there was a hierarchy of space, with the high-status chapel located to the southeast, with the religious brethren located to the north, and the infirmary to the west, northwest, or north. Where women were part of the residence, especially as staff, there were quartered to the northwest, often in the furthest place from the altar. The kitchen and staff areas buffered the religious eastern half of the site from the more secular western side. The layout held variability visually but was organised around zones of activity for the different groups that lived at the hospital, and mirrored the standard Augustinian monastic layout, modified with a northern, rather than a traditional southern, focus. The thesis also examined the material culture and evidence of diet and environment, integrating these finds into the wider hospital layout through the appreciation for the manner in which the medieval hospital functioned as a non-natural environment.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Arts and Humanities (Sheffield) > Archaeology (Sheffield)
The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Science (Sheffield) > Archaeology (Sheffield)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.770208
Depositing User: Mr Martin Huggon
Date Deposited: 01 Apr 2019 08:45
Last Modified: 25 Sep 2019 20:07
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/23473

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