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Re: Emmeline Fisher: Lines suggested by the openin
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First, the contents of the 1849 urn were never lost...

I don't actually recall saying they were lost. I said the, "...contents were at some point deposited in the Alexander Keiller Museum at Avebury where they seem to have languished unnoticed until recently."

One of the purposes of museums is to collect and curate things that might interest future generations: "discoveries" in their collections confirm they are succeeding in what they do.

Indeed, but some museums are unaware of what does lie in their storerooms (let alone their importance) until a member of the public 'discovers' them. The discovery of the Japanese handmade paper collection at the V&A is a case in point (part of that collection incidentally was also found at Kew by the same researcher - neither the V&A or Kew had the faintest idea of the collection's importance or that the two parts belonged together). This is not an unusual occurrence: during my time at one well-known museum in this country I discovered a Tibetan artefact, inlaid with mother-of-pearl, and lying in the corner of an otherwise empty basement. The artefact was covered in a couple of inches of dust and had no doubt laid there unnoticed for decades.

Secondly, your "corrections" to the poem. I can confirm that it does indeed read "Churchward" in the last line...

Again, I don't actually recall saying that the words churchyard etc were corrections. I asked is, "...this an error in transcription?" Thank you for clarifying the fact that there is no error in the transcription of these words.

You don't say what the "several minor" "errors" in my transcription are...

Please see http://www.themodernantiquaria[...]m/?thread=45075&message=564819 In the first online version you had highlighted the word whisper in line 5 of both versions of the poem; this was later corrected to the word down. Perhaps I'm missing something, but in line 9 there appears to be a comma in both versions of the poem after the word Vision. Ditto for line 19 where there appears to be an apostrophe in the word Druid's in both versions of the poem.

Finally, you describe my news piece in British Archaeology as "a rather hurriedly-concocted hardcopy magazine article".

Yes, I stand by that. Your online article is far more detailed and informative and, personally, I would have preferred to see that reproduced in the magazine rather than space-consuming photos of wax seals and Victorian coins.

Perhaps you'd like to add something by tracking down the third possible copy of the poem?

Perhaps, but as I said above, it needs a historian not an archaeologist (or an amateur collector of megalithic poems) to unravel this one. Meanwhile, thank you for contributing to this thread (I hope you find some of the other poems here also of interest) and I'm sure I'm not alone in hoping you will continue to contribute to some of the other threads on TMA.

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Posted by Littlestone
18th December 2007ce

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