My name is Hugh Thomas and I am a trench supervisor for the project. When I am not working at Paphos, I am either trying to complete my PhD in Classical Greek Archaeology, or I am teaching archaeology at the University of Sydney.
This year I am the supervisor of two trenches. Trench O9C and Trench 10D. Trench O9C was a trench I worked on last year but we weren’t able to complete in 2009, while Trench 10D is directly to the west of it.
A supervisor of a trench is someone who overseas everything that is happening in the trench and who records all that information and tries to make some sense of all the dirt and archaeological finds coming out of the ground. Often we have more unanswered questions then we have answered, but slowly as we dig down deeper we can begin to know a lot more about our trench and its role for the theatre!
I write this after one of the most hectic, interesting and enjoyable days I have had this year. Each Trench has thrown up some interesting things!
In Trench 09C, the two students who excavated it revealed a really interesting context. They hit a clay surface that was likely the floor for an old house that use to be on the site. On this surface, lots of different pots, including some that are almost complete, have been unearthed. Not only that, the students also found a bronze plate and lot of other unusual finds. My theory is that when people came to build an even bigger house after destroying the old one, they threw in a lot of old pots or just left them there if there were not going to be of use any more. Hopefully, once we photograph and record this clay surface, we can dig through it and try and uncover what was under the house!
In Trench 10D we uncovered a well! So far the two students excavating it have gone down about a metre into the well. Wells are fantastic to find in archaeology as people often throw pots or other objects into them, where they remain preserved wonderfully for archaeologists. We haven’t found anything like that yet, as most of the pottery we have found seems to be more modern. But hopefully as we get deeper, things might become even more exciting. However, the issue soon becomes how deep will this well go and how much can we excavate so people can still get in and out of it. Only time will tell…