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Chapter Summary

This introductory chapter presents an overview of the book that concerns two problems, one general and one specific. The general question is that of how one might use written and excavated material together. The more specific issue is how one makes the evidence extracted from the cemeteries of Merovingian northern Gaul talk about world views and the social structures they produced. The author explores some areas in which the more plentiful evidence from Gaul, and the ways in which it can be combined with written data such as are more or less absent from early Anglo-Saxon England, can refine ways of seeing the post-imperial centuries on the British side of the Channel. One of the most important possible areas in which archaeology can contribute to the study of the post-imperial centuries is in revealing its dynamism.

Keywords: British archaeology; cemeteries; Merovingian northern Gaul; post-imperial centuries



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