No Man is an island: evidence of pre-Viking Age migration to the Isle of Man

Hemer, K.A.; Evans, J.A.; Chenery, C.A.; Lamb, A.L.. 2014 No Man is an island: evidence of pre-Viking Age migration to the Isle of Man. Journal of Archaeological Science, 52. 242-249.

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The Isle of Man occupies a central position in the Irish Sea, in close proximity to the coasts of Ireland, north Wales, northwest England and southwest Scotland. The island's location means it presents an ideal stopping point for seafarers navigating the Irish Sea ‘trade highway’, and consequently, during the early medieval period, the island was the focus of power struggles between British and Irish elites, and eventually became the target of attack and subsequent settlement of people from Scandinavia during the Viking Age. It is the Viking-Age evidence that has been central to the discussion of migration to the Isle of Man to date, whilst less consideration has been given to population mobility to the island prior to the 10th century. This paper seeks to address this by presenting strontium and oxygen isotope data for a sample (n = 12) of two pre-10th century cemetery populations from the Isle of Man: Balladoole and Peel Castle. This study highlights evidence for mobility to the island prior to the advent of Viking-Age migrations, and consideration is given to the possible motivations for this early medieval mobility.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
ISSN: 03054403
Date made live: 23 Sep 2015 08:56 +0 (UTC)

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