Contaminatie in de Queen Anne? Een eerste aanzet tot het verklaren van de aanwezigheid van wilde plantenresten in scheepswrakken




A first step towards interpreting wild plant remains in Dutch shipwrecks. This paper focuses on the remains of wild plants that were found in shipwrecks from the former Zuiderzee inlet in the central Netherlands. So far, archaeobotanical research on these wreck sites has solely focused on economic plant remains, in order to answer questions on food consumption, organic cargoes and possible trade routes. For this purpose, soil samples were retrieved from these wrecks and analysed for their botanical contents. Soon it became clear that, besides the remains of economic plants, each wreck also contained thousands of wild plant remains. As these remains were often treated as a form of contamination, their potential for maritime archaeological studies has been largely neglected up to the present. Therefore the current study aims to explain how wild plant materials can become part of shipwreck contexts, and may help us to better understand the wrecks. For instance, by categorizing and interpreting the remains of wild plants that were found in the 18th-century shipwreck of the English freighter known as the Queen Anne.