Unique Dorset Artefacts Magazine Upsets The Academic Applecart
As interest in Professor Arthur Trench's Saxon findings at Stour Provost mounts following news that his team's single most important find - the so-called "DY S ON Movere Ventus Fabrica" - is to go on permanent exhibition at the University of Witchampton's Threadbone Gallery, Unique Dorset Artefacts Magazine has seriously upset the academic applecart by revealing new evidence which casts doubt on the authenticity of the dating techniques applied by Professor Trench and his team to the objects found in the brownfield site near to the former Curry's warehouse at Stour Provost. Professor Trench has stated "categorically" that the finds (uncovered on what is now thought to be the "temple complex" of the site ) are beyond doubt Saxon (c850 CE); earlier geo-physics and ground penetrating radar findings having been confirmed by "the most forensic post-excavation analysis ever undertaken on a single object including radio-carbon dating of the tubes and pollen analysis of humus* found inside the cylindrical container".
*NB Humus is a topsoil layer and not to be confused with a Greek appetizer which, though ancient, is generally believed to have been developed elsewhere and in a later period.
However, researchers at the Royal Dorset Archeological Survey based in Symondsbury, have obtained part of a sheathed cord (with a metal core) from the same area of the site which they are convinced is "late 20th century" at the very earliest. Extrapolating from the small piece of chord, Dr Elektra Cala-Ppliance and her team have used advanced CAD techniques to reconstruct the whole structure which, when overlaid on Professor Trench's find "confirms a remarkable congruence" between the "DY S ON Movere Ventus Fabrica" and a modern-day vacuum cleaner. "It looks like an open and shut case to us", Dr Calla-Ppliance writes in her article in the March edition of The Unique Dorset Artefacts Magazine, "an academic home-run, a scholarly hole-in-one, an archeological slam dunk!"**
** Dr Cala-Ppliance was Tarrant Rushton Schools under 12s Girl's Invitation Hurdles victor ludorum in 1970. "Something I have never quite gotten (sic) over"
Undeterred Professor Trench has fought back in a later article in the same edition. In the Write (sic) of Reply section he writes "Much as I respect the work of Dr Cala-Ppliance, she is, after all, new to the field with only 120 digs and 25 years experience behind her. Mistakes at this stage in a fledgeling career are no disgrace and, hopefully, she will learn from them. But the simple fact is that she has completely misidentified and misread the evidence. She has developed her theory based on a piece of cord. Everyone knows that the "DY S ON Movere Ventus Fabrica" was completely cordless. Simples! QED I think!"
ABOVE: TOP: Artist's impression of the "DY S ON Movere Ventus Fabrica" as it will be housed in the University of Witchampton's Threadbone Gallery. A temperature controlled, atmospherically humidified, high security cabinet has been especially commissioned; BOTTOM: Dr Elektra Cala-Ppliance's fully CAD-calibrated comparison of the "DY S ON Movere Ventus Fabrica" and a modern day vacuum cleaner which she claims proves conclusively that Professor Trench's find is not as old as claimed. To the untutored eye, Dr Calla-Ppliance's case seems compelling but the academic world will take some convincing: "We are natural sceptics", says Museum Director Ash-Mo Lean, "It's our job. We don't just accept the blxxxxxg obvious".