What can we learn from ancient beeswax?
Matthew Collins is an Archaeologist working in Cambridge and Copenhagen who is interested in the use of material culture, specifically parchment (skins) and (beeswax) seals as tools to explore the environmental history and management of fauna in the past.
In January Alex Sapoznik of King’s College London, explored the economic history of medieval beeswax in ‘Bees and Beeswax – the gold of the medieval world?’ . In a follow up lecture Matthew Collins will describe the ArcHives project, a team of researchers funded by the Carlsberg foundation, attempting to expand the range of records recovered from well dated historical beeswax. The ArcHives project is trying to establish how we might recover this information, and what questions we can ask about ecology, economy and conservation from this unexpected, but abundant record.