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  • Writer's pictureMatilda Siebrecht

Mugs, Makes, and Microwear

Full disclosure - this post was not planned at all. I was planning to write a first post with a particularly extraordinary topic - something that would dazzle and fire the imagination. But then I realised that the pressure of doing that was stopping me from getting into writing, and so I decided to just take the plunge and write a simple little introductory post. I'm still not exactly sure what style or form this blog is going to take. Will it be formal or informal, academic or casual, detailed or vague? Rather than waiting and trying to work it out, why don't you join me on this journey and let me know what you think of each post? Any feedback would be very much appreciated!

And as we have to start somewhere, why not start with the title? So lets have a little look at the three parts of this new blog: Mugs, Makes, and Microwear.


This is The Archaeologist's Teacup, so it's inevitable that cups or mugs would become involved at some point. I am personally a big fan of handmade mugs - those one-of-a-kind pieces that seem to tell their own story even before you've drunk out of them. Those of you who have been following me on Instagram might remember my 'Mugshot Monday' series, where I wrote a post related to archaeology that was inspired by the design of one of my cup collection. I was planning to dive into that series again, but this time in an expanded form within this blog. Perhaps I might even improve my own prehistoric pottery knowledge and write some features on different pottery styles from the past. We shall see!


The Archaeologist's Teacup developed from my earlier social media account - Stone Age Monkey - which was the marketing platform for a small business that I had for a while, selling handmade jewellery and accessories inspired by prehistory. Although the platform and the social media content has changed a lot since then, the love of creation and making remains a strong part of my personal interest in archaeological materials. It's why I became interested in pursuing artefact analysis as a specialisation in the first place. And I just really love to create things. Since the expansion of my family, my time in this respect has been a bit more limited, but I'm hoping that this year will change that. I'm determined to continue pursuing those hobbies that give me joy, and cutting back on those ones that create anxiety.


During my masters and PhD research, I specialised in microwear analysis - the use of microscopic techniques to see how objects in the past were made and used. I loved my research, and it was a big wrench for me to decide not to continue in academia, and branch out into other aspects of archaeology. It's now been a few months since I last did any kind of microwear analysis, and I definitely miss it. I therefore aim to keep my skills up to date by continuing with my own fun little projects, and sharing the results with you here. It will be a little bit like the Microwear Monday series that I used to share on my Instagram account.

So there you have it - the three things that I aim to focus on in this new blog. As I said, I have no idea how this space will develop, and am still not sure about regularity, although my initial aim is to write a new post once a month. I hope to include references and extra reading and all kinds of additional information, so that anyone reading can pursue their own rabbit hole into each topic. If anyone has any suggestions for post content, or perhaps a particular topic that they want to learn more about, please do comment below!

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