Hamwic (Saxon Southampton): an 8th century port and production centre
Authors: Brisbane, M.
Journal: The rebirth of towns in the West AD 700-1050
Although there is slight evidence for limited occupation on the west bank of the River Itchen in the decades immediately before AD 700, the vast bulk of the archaeological evidence which has been amassed, primarily since 1946, points clearly towards the origin of the town of Hamwic around the beginning of the 8th century. At that point a regularly laid out, planned town was conceived and built to serve as a port of entry into the newly expanded kingdom of the West Saxons. This paper sets out how recent discoveries have augmented this picture of the 8th century port of Hamwic, but also examines the role which production within the town itself might have had as one of the primary forces behind both the size and homogeneity of the town and the way in which the town functioned as a import-export centre. -Author
Preferred by: Mark Brisbane