The Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS) announced its one millionth find on Friday September 26th 2014. This is not only a major milestone for the project, but also a reminder of the usefulness of technology and public engagement in the field of archaeology.
The PAS is an archaeological project which aims to collect data from local finds in England and Wales. The finds are collected on a large database which is freely accessible for both researchers and laymen. The PAS encourages members of the public to record finds to their local liaison officer who then makes sure that the finds are uploaded to the database. The project was initiated by the UK government in 1997, and has operated since 2003.
The PAS is remarkable for its size and its use of members of the public. Without the help of the public, the project would have been unlikely to reach one million finds in only a decade. The database includes a number of very impressive finds, including the recent Seaton Down Hoard. This find is one of the largest Roman coin hoards with more than 22.000 coins from the late third and early fourth century AD.
Naturally, the PAS has provided basis for multiple research projects. To find out more, including how to get involved, check out their website.
By: Christine Greenlee