1st Edition

The Origins of Open Field Agriculture

By Trevor Rowley Copyright 1981
    258 Pages
    by Routledge

    258 Pages
    by Routledge

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    Originally published in 1981, The Origins of Open Field Agriculture looks at the problems connected with open field agriculture – the origins of strip cultivation, the three-field system, the adaptation of ‘Celtic’ fields, and the development of ploughing techniques. The book looks at the challenges to traditional ideas on the origins of settlement and their associated economy, and casts new light on understandings of village development. The book suggests that conventional views of the nucleated village, in the midst of open field strips as a product of the Anglo-Saxon migration, is no longer tenable. The book brings together the work of distinguished archaeologists, historians, and historical geographers and opens up a new perspective on the early development of medieval agriculture.

    List of Figures and Plates


    1. Archaeology and the Origins of Open-field Agriculture, C.C. Taylor

    2. The Origins of Open-field Agriculture – The Archaeological Fieldwork Evidence, David Hall

    3. Open-field Agriculture – The Evidence from the Pre-Conquest Charters of the West-Midlands, Della Hooke

    4. Approaches to the Adoption of the Midland System, H.S.A. Fox

    5. Commonfield Origins – The Regional Dimension, Bruce Campbell

    6. The Interpretation of Subdivided Fields: A Study in Private or Communal Interests? Robert Dodgshon

    7. Townfield Origins: The Case of Cockfield, Country Durham, Brian Roberts

    8. The Evolution of Settlement and Open-field Topography in North Arden down to 1300, Victor Skipp

    9. The Origin of Planned Field System in Holderness, Yorkshire, Mary Harvey

    10. Early Customary Tenures in Wales and Open-field Agriculture, Glanville, R.J. Jones


    Notes on Contributors



    Trevor Rowley