Internet Archaeology 41: Romano-British Pottery in the Fifth Century

Title
Title
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Title:
Internet Archaeology 41: Romano-British Pottery in the Fifth Century
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Internet Archaeology
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41
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Journal
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Editor:
Judith Winters ORCID icon
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Issue Editor:
James Gerrard ORCID icon
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Year of Publication:
2016
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ADS Library (ADS Library)
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URI: http://intarch.ac.uk/journal/issue41/index.html
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Created Date:
28 Mar 2019

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Abstract
Download available from the ADS icon Malcolm Lyne
This paper seeks to show that a full or partial monetary economy may have continued to operate in parts of Britain into the 2nd quarter of the 5th century at least; changing our perception of early 5th century material culture in South-East Britain from one leaving very few traces in the archaeological record to one which is an extension of that previously thought to be restricted to the period c.AD 370-410 but which can now be seen to span the period c.AD 370-430/440. Some Romano-British style pottery appears to have continued being made on a much more limited scale into the mid-5th century: a distinctive type of convex-sided dish with solid spaced bosses can be shown to have been made at or near Dorchester-upon-Thames, Portchester and Alice Holt Forest during the 5th century and continued being produced at the first-mentioned place for long enough to be copied by local Anglo-Saxon potters. Adjustments in dating mean that certain peculiarly insular types of military equipment such as the Tortworth strap-end and horse-headed buckle, hitherto dated to the last years of the 4th century, could belong to British soldiers of the early 5th century.
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Download available from the ADS icon Maria Duggan
In western Britain, particularly the south-west, imported pottery of Mediterranean origin has provided an important means of recognising 5th and 6th-century sites. The ability to link these finds to typologies established in the Mediterranean has led to sherds of imported amphorae or fineware being considered as key chronological markers or indicators of long-distance connections. The arrival of new forms of pottery in the mid- to later 5th century, with a distinct western and coastal distribution, has been used to indicate the emergence of a new and separate post-Roman import system, characterised by a model of direct shipment from the east Mediterranean. This model has been reinforced by a relative absence of known, comparable finds along the Atlantic Seaboard. Recent publications from the Continent, however, are starting to fill this 'gap'. Revised patterns of ceramic distribution in western France and north-west Spain suggest that British sites were integrated into a more complex Atlantic system of trade or exchange. This article will discuss some recent publications on ceramic imports to Britain, particularly those that offer new interpretations of the date and character of this import system. It will highlight emerging evidence from the Continent, particularly south-western France and, specifically, relevant publications on Late Antique pottery in Bordeaux. This will allow new comparisons to be drawn between patterns of pottery importation and use in Britain, France and the wider Atlantic region in the 5th and 6th centuries.
Abstract icon
Download available from the ADS icon Keith J Fitzpatrick-Matthews
During large scale excavations at Baldock in the 1980s, a series of fifth-century and later deposits was identified. Analysis of the pottery showed new forms and fabrics appeared at this time. Similar fabrics were also identified on sites outside the town. This paper explores the implications of the material for understanding the Late Roman/early medieval transition in Hertfordshire.
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Download available from the ADS icon Sam Lucy
Recent research on the prehistoric and Romano-British remains at Mucking, Essex, has revealed much about the long-term settlement sequence of that important site. A minor, but potentially important, aspect has been identification of a small later Roman pottery assemblage from the site, apparently dating to a period without major occupation. This paper explores the contextual associations of this assemblage, and argues that it may represent very early 5th-century activity arising from the earliest 'Anglo-Saxon' activity at Mucking.
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Download available from the ADS icon James Gerrard
This article is an introduction to Internet Archaeology issue 41 Romano-British Pottery in the Fifth Century.
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Download available from the ADS icon Paul Bidwell
In western Cornwall production of pottery in the local gabbroic fabric seems to have continued throughout the 5th century. Very small quantities reached sites in north-east Cornwall and south Devon. The date at which pottery use ended in the remainder of Devon cannot be established at present. In the final phase the pottery in use consisted almost entirely of South Devon ware and BB1 from south-east Dorset; at Exeter importation of both wares ceased at about the same time. Changes in the latest coarse ware forms are discussed, and the importance of post-Roman Mediterranean imports in dating the end of the Romano-British industries is highlighted.
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Download available from the ADS icon Diana Briscoe
Stamped pottery has had a long and varied history in Britain. There have been periods when it flourished and periods when it almost totally disappeared. This article considers two variations of the rosette motif (A 5) and their fortunes from the late Iron Age to the Early Saxon period. Having been of little importance in the Iron Age and early Roman periods, they became some of the most widely used and distributed motifs in the fourth century. By the fifth century, they were still important, but formed a much smaller proportion of the total motifs than in the fourth century. In the vast majority of cases, there is no correlation between the find spots of fourth and fifth century examples. However, I have identified nine locations where one or other of the two motifs have been found on a late Roman site, which lies within a mile of another site with the same motif, but from the post-Roman period. In these rare conjunctions, I believe that ongoing usage of the motif can be demonstrated from Roman to post-Roman times. It is also clear that pot stamp evidence can be vital in identifying these highly unusual locations and pointing other researchers to sites worthy of special attention.
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Download available from the ADS icon James Gerrard
This article discusses a late Roman Black Burnished form known as the Type 18 bowl. The lateness of this form was first discussed in 2004 but new discoveries have continued to reinforce the probably late fourth to early fifth century date assigned to this vessel. Imitations in other fabrics are also beginning to be identified with one such vessel found in association with early Anglo-Saxon pottery.
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Download available from the ADS icon Philippa Walton
Sam Moorhead
Coinage forms one of the most recognisable categories of material culture dating to the late fourth and early fifth centuries. As a result, it has played a pivotal role in dating the ‘end’ of Roman Britain. This article summarises key numismatic evidence for the period and tries to go beyond chronology, illustrating how hoards and site finds can be used to explore the nature of coin use throughout the diocese of Britannia and to provide some insight into its apparent collapse in the fifth century AD.
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