The small finds from the Baths Basilica Wroxeter: a digital resource

H E M Cool, Roger White, David Griffiths, Steve Linnane, Angela Bliss, Kate Pretty, 2014

Data copyright © Barbican Research Associates unless otherwise stated


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Dr H E M Cool
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https://doi.org/10.5284/1023596
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H E M Cool, Roger White, David Griffiths, Steve Linnane, Angela Bliss, Kate Pretty (2014) The small finds from the Baths Basilica Wroxeter: a digital resource [data-set]. York: Archaeology Data Service [distributor] https://doi.org/10.5284/1023596

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Overview

Arrowheads recovered during excavations at Wroxeter.

The excavations of the Baths Basilica at Wroxeter produced a small find assemblage of over nine thousand items. During the post-excavation work very extensive finds reports and catalogues were created. Much of the material was considered to be residual and a decision was taken to consign these to archive and to only publish small sub-sets of the data that were thought relevant to the stratigraphic narrative of the site. It was hoped that in the future it might eventually be possible to publish an additional volume which would present all of the finds from both the Baths Basilica excavations and those directed by Graham Webster in the adjacent Baths and Macellum area. The publication of the small finds from those excavations had also been selective (see Wroxeter: The Webster Excavation Archive Project DOI: 10.5284/1011326 for further details). It has never been possible to do this.

It has become apparent that apparently 'residual' Roman small finds were being actively used during the fifth and sixth centuries and can provide considerable help when exploring those periods. The assemblage from the Baths Basilica with its exemplary stratigraphic recording thus had the potential to be a research resource of considerable value. As the single largest group of Roman small finds from the West Midlands it also had much potential for the study of regional patterns in material culture use. Against this background Barbican Research Associates approached English Heritage in 2012 with a view to creating a digital resource based on the work already done, and the project was commissioned in January 2013.

The full background to the project will be found in Section 2-Introduction of the downloads, but may be summarised here. A database has been created which records all of the small finds from the excavation together with their stratigraphic contexts. Typological summaries of the post-excavation reports have been created which explain the typologies and groupings used. These follow the functional groupings used in the original letterpress publication. The complete stratigraphic listing of all the contexts has been checked and concordances have been created which describe the contexts and provide references to the published letterpress report. A description of the recording processes used during the excavations and a guide to the phasing has been written. The photographs and the line drawing of the finds have been scanned at high resolution and indices of these are presented. Our aim has been to create a resource that can be mined by researchers. As this was an archive project no new research has been carried out on the material as part of our work.