The intentional design of acoustics that is suggested by the screening around the stage in the grandstand from Yeavering, is in sharp contrast to what have been observed as far as the archaeological record and (re)construction of Building A from Thirlings are concerned.

In the first case, the archaeological record itself indicates that differentiations of sound inside the space could have been pursued according to acoustics notions that were in all probability widespread between Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages. In the second case, neither archaeological data nor the analyses of the experimental (re)construction suggest differentiations of sound within the building. In short, at the community and social level, the sonic environment of Building A at Thirlings is much more horizontal than the one of grandstand at Yeavering. This open new scenarios on the perceptive and emotional experience of early medieval spaces.

In past societies and communities where electronic amplifiers did not exist and post-industrial noise pollution was not experienced, sound must have been experienced much differently than today. Acoustics that were disadvantageous to specific performances could become a major concern to be carefully prevented or addressed. More research is needed to explore how social, individual and political relations were facilitated or hindered by past sonic environments in settlements like Yeavering or Thirlings.

Skip to content