by Ian Armit
Wheelhouses were Iron Age buildings of great sophistication. Although found only in northern Scotland, they belong to a much wider “roundhouse tradition” that, before the arrival of the Romans, covered the whole of Britain. When tidal erosion on Cnip beach in west Lewis uncovered a spectacularly well-preserved wheelhouse complex, it presented a rare opportunity to shed new light on the extraordinary architectural phenomenon. The uniquely detailed sequence at Cnip enabled the excavation team to trace the settlement from conception to abandonment, dissecting the buildings and generating new insights into the daily lives of the Iron Age islanders, their relationships with their environment, and with their neighbours. This volume sets out the results of the excavations, placing them in the wider context of the British and European Iron Age.
Ian Armit is Chair in Archaeology at the University of York. His research centres on the cultural archaeology of the European Later Bronze and Iron Ages.
The Society of Antiquaries of Scotland gratefully acknowledges funding towards the publication of this volume from Historic Scotland.