Who are the Moravians?
Nigel had sought me out through the Chippenham & District Metal Detecting Club (CDMDC) website to ask whether the club would support an ongoing initiative to add some historic context to an already established local research project. Eager to learn more, I gleaned as much background information as possible to understand the scope of what he was asking and concluded that the club would most likely approach this request with much enthusiasm. Nigel had already committed vast amounts of time to the project and, consequently, a wealth of background information was available through his study.
In summary, our task was to detect around the Moravian Church in the village of East Tytherton, including the burial ground, school and adjacent playing fields, to see if we could recover any artefacts that would lend support to his already extensive research. So, where on earth is Moravia and why did the Moravian Church teachings take hold in a tiny Wiltshire village? Well Moravia, named after the River Morava, is a historical region within what is now the eastern part of the Czech Republic and was one of the historical Czech lands, together with Bohemia and Czech Silesia. It has had a very turbulent history under various empires and was eventually dissolved in 1949. The Moravian Church considers itself to be the oldest Protestant denomination, having been founded way back in 1457. For reference, compare this date with the mid-16th c