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            landscape features below the North Sea from seismic data and using box corers, a

            marine geological sampling tool for soft sediments in water, to find out more about
            the landscape. The Doggerland project is huge, involving researchers from many
            universities - Bradford, Nottingham, Warwick, Wales Trinity Saint David, St Andrews,
            Birmingham and Ghent.

            A different aspect of Doggerland is its contemporary relevance: the loss of
            Doggerland was the last time humans experienced climate change at the scale
            currently projected by climate scientists. The prehistoric population probably had the

            flexibility and mobility to move and adapt. Modern populations will not have. Many
            feel that lessons derived from studying Doggerland could have more than
            archaeological relevance.


             *A virtual tour of an exhibition Doggerland: Lost World in the North Sea, at the

             Rijksmuseum van Oudheden (National Museum of Antiquities) in Leiden, southern
             Holland, - can be viewed on the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden’s YouTube channel.


            History and geography: the Morris formulation
            The great Doggerland inundation raises the question, how does geography relate to
            history? To John of Gaunt, it was being offshore islanders that defined our identity:


            “This happy breed of men, this little world,
            This precious stone set in the silver sea,
            Which serves it in the office of a wall,
            Or as a moat defensive to a house,
            Against the envy of less happier lands”.

            But as we’ve already seen, it isn’t so simple. The sea, as the Narrow Channel showed,

            served as both a highway and a barrier. Ian Morris, an archaeologist and historian,
            has an excellent formula for this. Geography defines history, but history changes
            what geography means. Two examples illustrate this. Britain is located on the edge
            Atlantic. Before 1500, this meant on the edge of nowhere; the offshore islands
            seemed a remote a backwater. Then improvements in seafaring and navigation
            enabled Columbus to discover America, and a new Atlantic world was opened up and
            created. Suddenly Britain found itself at its hub, transforming its fortunes. Then, in
                   th
            the 18  century they were transformed again, this time thanks to Britain’s coal-fields.
            Britain always coal. From Roman times to 1700 it was mined and burned as a fuel on
            a relatively limited scale. Then came the scientific revolution, and James Watt, a
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