Elizabeth Cory-Lopez

Elizabeth is an independent Experimental Archaeologist with an MPhil, an MScR and an MA (Hons) in the discipline. Her expertise is prehistoric technical processes, drilling, and she has taught on the Archaeology of Scotland.

Concurrent to gaining her academic qualifications Elizabeth trained as a tour guide, and now has 20 years’ experience as a professional guide. She has led tours specialising in Edinburgh and Scottish history, as well as the First World War battlefields around Ypres and the Somme.

In a previous life Elizabeth trained as an actor at Queen Margaret’s University College, Edinburgh, writing her dissertation on Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, and achieving the Ian Richardson Prize for Voice. However, the focus of her short acting career was the portrayal of Mary, Queen of Scots.

What first sparked your interest for archaeology?

I was taken as an 8 year old to an exhibition on Pompeii at the BM. I became mesmerised by two things: the cast of a dog, who looked simply asleep, and a coin. Although I could not have found words for what I felt at the time, it was as if I was bonded to this frozen moment in time. Not from the description someone had recorded in a book, but through the  existence of the coin and the dog in the seconds I gazed at them.

If you can – which is your favourite archaeological/historical site?

Favourite site:Orkney, standing at the entrance of the Maes Howe tomb. Viewing the connections in the whole, vast panorama between the constructed visible sites (Ring of Brodgar, Stones of Stenness etc) to the land,to the loch, to hills on Hoy;  and feeling part of something extraordinary.  Chartres Cathedral comes a very distant second.