Antonia Thomas

PhD Student


Neolithic Art and Architecture in Orkney: Process, Temporality and Context

Antonia has an extensive background in professional archaeologist, with experience on both commercial and research-led archaeology and heritage management projects in the UK.

Her AHRC-funded PhD (supervised by Professors Jane Downes and Mark Edmonds) explores the interaction of art and architecture in Neolithic Orkney through an examination of stone-working processes. Focussing upon the decorated and dressed stone from the Ness of Brodgar, she is also producing an illustrated catalogue of this assemblage. Her research has also involved original fieldwork at Skara Brae and Maeshowe, and has led to the discovery of many previously unrecorded examples of Neolithic art.

Antonia's PhD was published as the first in the University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute research series in September 2016. See for details.

Selected publications

Thomas, A. 2014 ‘Creating contexts: between the archaeological site and art gallery’. In A.Cochrane & I.A. Russell (eds.) Art and Archaeology: Collaborations, Conversations, Criticisms. One World Archaeology Series, Volume 11. New York: Springer-Kluwer.

Downes, J. & Thomas, A. 2013 ‘Where mythical space lies: land ownership versus land use in the northern Bronze Age’. In M Relaki & D Catapoti (eds.), An Archaeology of Land Ownership, pp.70-92. London, Routledge.

Card, N. & Thomas, A. 2012 ‘Painting a picture of Neolithic Orkney: decorated stonework from the Ness of Brodgar’. In A. Cochrane & A. Jones (eds.), Visualising the Neolithic, pp.111-124. Oxford, Oxbow Books.

Farrell, M., Bunting, M. Jane, Lee, D.H.J. & Thomas, A. 2012 ‘Neolithic settlement at the woodland’s edge: palynological data and timber architecture in Orkney, Scotland’. Journal of Archaeological Science.

Lee, D. & Thomas, A. 2012 ‘Orkney’s First Farmers: Early Neolithic Settlement on Wyre’. Current Archaeology 268 (July 2012), pp.12-19.

Loveday, R., Anderson-Whymark, H., Card, N. & Thomas, A. 2012 ‘Chiselling marks at Maeshowe’. PAST 72 (November 2012), pp.5-7.