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Investigating London’s Post Medieval Pipe Clay Figurines From 1500-1800: Critiquing 3D Approaches to Mould Generation Analysis Via English and Transatlantic Case Studies

Crichton-Turley, Courtenay-Elle (2018) Investigating London’s Post Medieval Pipe Clay Figurines From 1500-1800: Critiquing 3D Approaches to Mould Generation Analysis Via English and Transatlantic Case Studies. PhD thesis, University of Sheffield.

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Abstract

This thesis has two main strands to its research, one being the first comprehensive synthesis of London’s post-medieval pipe clay figurines dating to the period 1500-1800, combined with examining the potential for inexpensive 3D imaging technology to carry out a new digitised methodology for mould matching and figurine generational analysis. By applying this new digital methodology new insights have been gained on the wider context of these artefacts. The thesis also contextualises the London material with a broad array of academic publications on pipe clay figurines from Britain, Germany, the Netherlands, Poland, Jamaica, and America. This has included an extensive comparison between the previously unappreciated pipe clay figurines from London and figurines from Germany and the Low Countries and a specific comparison with data collected from the United States of America. This compendium of data provides more information to examine a range of questions, such as production, distribution, iconography, intended audience, and the general economic, social, and religious setting in which they operated. By drawing upon these resources and new avenues of research this investigation offers an insight into pipe clay figurines within Germany and the Low Countries by examining a series of archaeological and contemporary literary sources. Following chapters go on to explore both the London and New World assemblages, presenting details on the distribution of these collections, a contextualised discussion on consumer markets, and iconographical relations of specific case studies. It is from this assemblage that figurines presenting similar stylistic qualities were selected for further analysis via 3D imaging methodologies to comprehend how closely, if at all, the morphometrics of the figurines compare and whether these figurines were produced from related mould groups. The parameters for this analysis are developed in Chapters 4 and 6, which discuss controlled datasets and a series of tests investigating the accuracy of inexpensive 3D imaging technology and their suitability for pipe clay figurine 3D imaging. These tests also analysed other potential influences on the morphometrics of the figurines and designed error parameters to be taken into account so that potential mould relationships could still be observed between figurines that had experienced damage, erosion, or manipulated on removal from their mould. These two strands are then brought together in Chapter 8, where new theories are discussed concerning the causes behind the changing iconography of these figurines, particularly those from London and the New World. This thesis also highlights the wider potential of 3D modelling for artefact studies and the limitations of Structure from Motion in the field of mould analysis. Overall, the research covered within this thesis has provided new details on a previously unstudied dataset alongside a much-needed critique of a new technological approach to 3D modelling and a brand new and revitalising means of carrying out mould-matching analysis of artefacts and other archaeological material.

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.770213
Depositing User: Miss Courtenay-Elle Crichton-Turley
Date Deposited: 01 Apr 2019 08:35
Last Modified: 25 Sep 2019 20:07
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/23513

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