BRITANNIA 33 2002

A JOURNAL OF ROMANO-BRITISH AND KINDRED STUDIES

 

CONTENTS

 

ARTICLES

J.P. Wild:  The Textile Industries of Roman Britain, 1

R.D. Grasby and R.S.O. Tomlin:  The Sepulchral Monument of the Procurator C. Julius Classicianus, 43

Hella Eckardt:  Lamp Production in West Stockwell Street, Colchester, 77

David Gibson and Gavin Lucas:  Pre-Flavian Kilns at Greenhouse Farm and the Social Context of Early Roman Pottery Production in Cambridgeshire, 95

Amanda Clarke and Michael Fulford:  The Excavation of Insula IX Silchester: the First Five Years of the ‘Town Life’ Project, 1997-2001, 129

Sheppard Frere and Michael Fulford:  The Collegium Peregrinorum at Calleva (Silchester, Hampshire), 167

Leslie W. Hepple:  John Dee, Harleian MS 473 and the Early Recording of Roman Inscriptions in Britain, 177

J.C. Mann:  The Settlement of Veterans Discharged from Auxiliary Units Stationed in Britain, 183

Richard Abdy:  A Survey of the Coin Finds from the Antonine Wall , 189

Andrew Sargent:  The North-South Divide Revisited: Thoughts on the Character of Roman Britain, 219

Kordula Gostenčnik:  Agathangelus the Bronzesmith: the British Finds in their Continental Context, 227

 

NOTES

David Bird:  The Events of A.D. 43: Further Reflections, 257

Andrew Breeze:  Two Roman Place-Names in Wales: Alabum and Varis, 263

Andrew Breeze:  The Name of Lutudarum, Derbyshire, 266

Felicity Wild:  The Development of the Roman Road System in the North-West: the Evidence of the Samian Ware, 268

 

ROMAN BRITAIN IN 2001

I Sites Explored, by B.C. Burnham, F. Hunter and A.P. Fitzpatrick, 276

II Inscriptions, by R.S.O. Tomlin and M.W.C. Hassall, 355

 

REVIEW ARTICLES

John Pearce:  Ritual and Interpretation in Provincial Roman Cemeteries (reviews D. Castella, La nécropole gallo-romaine d'Avenches 'En Chaplix': fouilles 1987-1992. Volume 1. Étude des sépultures; D. Castella, C. Martin Pruvot, H. Amrein, A. Duvauchelle and F.E. Koenig, La nécropole gallo-romaine d'Avenches 'En Chaplix': fouilles 1987-1992. Volume 2. Étude du mobilier; C. Ertel, Untersuchungen zu den Gräberfeldern in Carnuntum, Bd. I. Der archäologische Befund; A. Faber, Das römische Gräberfeld auf der Keckwiese in Kempten 2. Gräber der mittleren Kaiserzeit und Infrastruktur des Gräberfelds sowie Siedlungsbefunds im Ostteil der Keckwiese;A. Haffner and R. Cordie-Hackenberg, Das keltisch-römische Gräberfeld von Wederath-Belginum. 5. Teil Gräber 1818-2472 ausgegraben 1978, 1981-1985, mit Nachträgen zu Bd. 1-4;D. Hintermann, Der Südfriedhof von Vindonissa: archäologische und naturwissenschaftliche Untersuchungen im römerzeitlichen Gräberfeld Windisch-Dägerli;R. Pirling and M. Siepen, Das römisch-fränkische Gräberfeld von Krefeld-Gellep 1983-1988 vol. 7), 373

Simon Esmonde Cleary:  Catholic, but not Orthodox (reviews J.K. Knight, The End of Antiquity: Archaeology, Society and Religion AD 235-700; E. Swift, The End of the Western Roman Empire: an Archaeological Investigation; R. Reece, The Later Roman Empire: an Archaeology AD 150-600), 379

 

REVIEWS

Ordnance Survey (text by S. Esmonde Cleary), Historical Map and Guide of Roman Britain (by David Mattingly), 383

Alexander, J., and Pullinger, J., Roman Cambridge: Excavations on Castle Hill 1956-1988 (Proceedings of the Cambridge Antiquarian Society 88 (ed. A. Taylor)) (by Judith Plouviez), 385

Ellis, P. (ed.), The Forum Baths and Macellum at Wroxeter. Excavations by Graham Webster 1955-85 (by Louise Revell), 385

Faulkner, N., The Decline and Fall of Roman Britain (by Roger White), 387

Geneviève, V., Monnaies et circulation monétaire à Toulouse sous l'Empire Romain (Ier-Ve siècle) (by Richard Reece), 388

Hingley, R., Roman Officers and English Gentlemen: The Imperial Origins of Roman Archaeology (by Malcolm Todd), 389

James, S., and Millett, M. (eds), Britons and Romans: Advancing an Archaeological Agenda (by Richard Hingley), 390

Leach, P., with Evans, C.J., Excavation of a Romano-British Roadside Settlement in Somerset. Fosse Lane Shepton Mallet 1990 (by Neil Holbrook), 393

LeQuesne, C., et al. (fieldwork by T.J. Strickland), Excavations at Chester, The Roman and Later Defences, Part 1: Investigations 1978-1990 (by Jason Wood), 393

Mackinder, A., A Romano-British Cemetery on Watling Street: Excavations at 165 Great Dover Street, Southwark, London (by Ellen Swift), 394

Barber, B., and Bowsher, D., The Eastern Cemetery of Roman London: Excavations 1983-1990 (by Ellen Swift), 394

Rahtz, P.A., Hirst, S., and Wright, S.M., Cannington Cemetery. Excavations 1962-3 of Prehistoric, Roman, Post-Roman and Later Features at Cannington Park Quarry, near Bridgwater, Somerset (by David Petts), 395

Rippon, S., The Transformation of Coastal Wetlands. Exploitation and Management of Marshland Landscapes in North-West Europe during the Roman and Medieval Periods (by Michael Fulford), 396

Robertson, A.S. (ed. R. Hobbs and T.V. Buttrey), An Inventory of Romano-British Coin Hoards (by Edward Besly), 397

Rorison, M., Vici in Roman Gaul (by Barry Burnham), 399

Rush, P., Dickinson, B., Hartley, B., and Hartley, K.F., Roman Castleford. Excavations 1974-85. Vol. III. The Pottery (by P. Buckland), 399

Shirley, E., Building a Roman Legionary Fortress (by Lynn Pitts), 401

Swift, E., Regionality in Dress Accessories in the Late Roman West (by H.E.M. Cool), 402

Woolf, G., Becoming Roman: The Origins of Provincial Civilization in Gaul (by John Creighton), 403

 


BRITANNIA 2002 ABSTRACTS

 

J.P. Wild:  The Textile Industries of Roman Britain

This account of textile production in Roman Britain updates work first published in 1970, but concentrates on the economic as opposed to the technological aspects of the topic. It is structured to follow the successive stages in manufacture from fibres and fibre-sources through spinning and weaving to a review of the range of textile output, clothing and soft furnishing, drawing on archaeological and written sources. Two specific regional groups of textile finds are examined, from the Flavian-Trajanic North and from the Colchester area. Suggestions are offered on the economic position of the industry within a provincial context, its role in trade and exchange and its putative production capacity.

 

R.D. Grasby and R.S.O. Tomlin:  The Sepulchral Monument of the Procurator C. Julius Classicianus

The evidence for an altar tomb of the Procurator of Britain, C. Julius Classicianus, c. A.D. 65, is contained in three substantial fragments, two of which are lettered, and the third richly carved as a bolster stone. Displayed together in the British Museum since 1935 they form one of the most important and beautifully lettered archaeological documents of Roman London. In this study, the information contained in the carving and shaping of each fragment is reassessed and assumptions which led to the present reconstruction are reviewed. A measured survey of fragments and lettering is offered as the basis of a fuller reconstruction of the altar tomb and its text.

 

Hella Eckardt:  Lamp Production in West Stockwell Street, Colchester

Artificial illumination is one of the most taken-for-granted features of modern life but in antiquity the availability and use of lamps was much more restricted. In Roman Britain, lighting equipment was rare and the use of ceramic lamps was most common on military sites and in large urban centres. The paper discusses the evidence for lamp production near modern West Stockwell Street in Colchester, which consists of excavated structures and of a large number of lamps and moulds. This unique assemblage is of particular importance as it can be dated to just before the Boudiccan revolt. Through typological and iconographic analysis the Colchester ‘lamp factory’ and its output are placed into their wider Romano-British context.

 

David Gibson and Gavin Lucas:  Pre-Flavian Kilns at Greenhouse Farm and the Social Context of Early Roman Pottery Production in Cambridgeshire

Eleven pre-Flavian kilns recently excavated outside Cambridge have provided a unique opportunity to study the nature of early Roman pottery production in the region. Few other kiln sites of this period are known in the area, and were either excavated over a century ago or consist of isolated examples. These newly discovered kilns were excavated as part of a development-led project on a Late Iron Age and post-Conquest settlement, which enabled a greater understanding of the social context of the kilns. As well as presenting details on the kiln structures and ceramic output, this paper attempts to interpret the organization of pre-Flavian ceramic production and consumption in terms of pre-existing Iron Age distribution and exchange networks.

 

Amanda Clarke and Michael Fulford:  The Excavation of Insula IX Silchester: the First Five Years of the ‘Town Life’ Project, 1997-2001

The interim results of the first five seasons of excavation of Insula IX, Silchester (Calleva Atrebatum) are reported. Work to date has significantly clarified the development of the insula between the first and the fourth centuries. With the establishment of the street grid in the second half of the first century residential occupation represented by town-houses gives way to a commercial and artisanal presence represented by shops and workshops in the second century. This pattern of occupation is further reinforced by major reorganisation of the northern half of the insula in the third-fourth centuries. The extent and nature of continuing occupation in the fifth-sixth centuries is also established.

 

Sheppard Frere and Michael Fulford:  The Collegium Peregrinorum at Calleva (Silchester, Hampshire)

The context, significance, and dating of three inscriptions (RIB 69, 70, 71) which record the presence of a collegium peregrinorum at Silchester are reviewed.

 

Leslie W. Hepple:  John Dee, Harleian MS 473 and the Early Recording of Roman Inscriptions in Britain

The first edition of Camden’s Britannia in 1586 was the foundation of Roman epigraphy in Britain, but contained a mere twelve inscriptions on stone. It is well-established that Camden’s source for three of these (all in Cumberland) was a manuscript account (now Harleian MS 473 in the British Library) of a tour to the Welsh Marches in 1574 and the collection of copies of the inscriptions from Edward Threlkeld, Chancellor of Hereford diocese and a Cumberland man himself. The standard attribution of the MS in epigraphic references (such as RIB) is ‘anonymous’, but this note shows that the authorship of MS 473 can definitely be attributed to the Elizabethan scholar, astrologer and antiquary John Dee, who was a friend of Camden and contributed a Manchester inscription to the 1607 Britannia. Dee’s contribution as the earliest post-medieval source of Roman inscriptions deserves recognition.

 

J.C. Mann:  The Settlement of Veterans Discharged from Auxiliary Units Stationed in Britain

This paper considers diplomas issued to auxiliaries serving in Britain. The geographical distribution of these diplomas in Britain (they are listed by location) does not correspond to evidence for auxiliary veterans derived from stone inscriptions. The diplomas therefore fill a gap in the evidence. It seems that the inhospitable setting of the northern forts encouraged veterans to move and settle in pleasanter surroundings.

 

Richard Abdy:  A Survey of the Coin Finds from the Antonine Wall

This is an up-to-date catalogue of the stratified and stray coin finds from the vicinity of the forts on the Antonine Wall and its related outpost of Camelon (whose recent finds appear prior to the publication of the report with the very generous permission of the excavator, Professor Maxfield). The evidence is taken from a variety of sources, some nowadays of restricted availability, and compiled as a single list for the first time. Extant coins have been rechecked where possible and their identifications updated to modern references.

            As a single-period site the Antonine Wall is highly unusual for Roman Britain. However, in contrast to the more coherent pottery evidence, the body of coin finds carries within it background noise from a minority that are either modern losses or deposits made by post-occupation activity. By looking at the assemblage as a whole the article attempts to: draw the evidence back into focus and reconcile it with the currently accepted chronology while considering whether the coins might contain any shadow evidence of other periods of activity; and, if not, what such simple archaeological sites reveal about coin use and loss in Roman forts.

 

Andrew Sargent:  The North-South Divide Revisited: Thoughts on the Character of Roman Britain

The distributions of the main monument classes of Roman Britain are considered on a broad scale, offering a glimpse of the social and political forces which underlay them. Consistent differences are demonstrated between the responses to Rome of the peoples of the North and West of Britain and those of the South and East, corresponding to the conventional ‘highland’ and ‘lowland’ zones or ‘military’ and ‘civil’ zones. Why did indigenous cultures respond so differently? An explanation is sought in the societies of the Late Pre-Roman Iron Age, and evidence for strong continuity is identified.

 

Kordula Gostenčnik:  Agathangelus the Bronzesmith: the British Finds in their Continental Context

This paper is concerned with the products of a first-century A.D. specialised workshop for the production of tweeezers, brush handles, and moulding tools in copper-alloys with the maker’s stamp ‘Agathangelus’, which are scattered all over the Western Roman provinces and Italy. Roman Britain has hitherto produced fifteen related implements. Due to the details of their stamps, a most recently excavated brush handle from Sandridge, Hertfordshire, and two tweezers from Fréjus, France, and Magdalensberg, Austria, can now be closely connected as to the production process and their dating. The moulding tools were also forged by other workshops, and one such piece from London can now be attributed to Hermes/Herma, who is known from Pompeii also.

 

David Bird:  The Events of A.D. 43: Further Reflections

A short note challenging aspects of the version of the Roman invasion of A.D. 43 presented by Professors Frere and Fulford in Britannia 32. Particular attention is paid to the so-called Medway battle, the location of the garrison and the episode of the Dobunni, the supposed huge Richborough fortress and succeeding supply base, and the postulated fortresses at London and Westminster. Finally, a case is made that the evidence for the invasion campaign can be interpreted to suggest that there were no serious battles but only relatively small-scale actions fought mostly against mobile forces using guerrilla tactics.

 

Andrew Breeze:  Two Roman Place-names in Wales: Alabum and Varis

The Ravenna Cosmography’s Alabum is normally regarded as Llandovery, the Antonine Itinerary’s Varis as St Asaph. Yet the interpretations of the first as ‘hill, crest’ and the second as ‘at the waters’ are baseless. Middle Welsh alafon ‘middle part, pit of the stomach’ indicates rather a meaning ‘hollow, depression’ for the first; Welsh gwar ‘nape, back of the neck; upper part’ an interpretation ‘at the necks (of land)’ or ‘at the upper places’ for the second. These explanations both suit local topography.

 

Andrew Breeze:  The Name of Lutudarum, Derbyshire

British-Latin Lutudarum, known from the Ravenna Cosmography and pigs of lead, is usually taken as Carsington, Derbyshire. But Rivet and Smith’s belief that it represents a hydronym perhaps meaning ‘muddy one’ is dubious. Welsh lludw ‘ashes, cinders’ and Brittonic *daru- ‘oak(-wood)’ instead suggest an interpretation ‘ashy oak-wood; oak trees with slag-heaps’, which would be appropriate for a Roman industrial site.

 

Felicity Wild:  The Development of the Roman Road System in the North-West: the Evidence of the Samian Ware

It has recently been argued that the initial route of the Roman conquest of the North-West was not the road up the western edge of the Pennines through Manchester and Ribchester, but King Street, the road through the Lancashire plain. However, analysis of the material from the sites along this road (Wilderspool, Wigan, Walton-le-Dale, Lancaster) reveals a scarcity of early Flavian samian and, in particular, of form 29, in comparison with Manchester, Ribchester and the Pennine forts. With an absence of fort sites between Middlewich and Lancaster, King Street still seems better regarded as a later road linking the supply bases and industrial complexes on the estuaries.