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The  Durobrivae of  Antoninus - Plate 31

P31.Nos. 1,2, 7 and 8 Antiquities from F

Artis never completed the words to accompany his drawings. The images below include interpretations provided by modern day archaeology specialists.

Plate 31.1

Pl.31, 1.jpg

Circular copper-alloy bracelet made from thick wire  with groups of grooved decoration along the entire length.  The overlapping terminals have reel decoration; one appears to be incomplete. 


A Wardle - March 2019

Plate 31.2

Pl.31, 2 .jpg

Spiral copper-alloy armlet, made from circular-sectioned wire with six twists; bead and reel decoration on the terminals with incised chevrons below. Late Iron Age.

A Wardle - March 2019

Plate 31.3

Pl.31, 3 .jpg

Circular copper-alloy mount decorated with a stylised lion head (leontomorphic).  Such mounts or  studs, typically around 17mm in diameter were used to  decorate  caskets or boxes, often on the lock plate, fastened to the wood  by  an iron shank. The drawing shows a typical form of the object with its deep moulding creating a triangular outline, the features of the lion mask  rendered schematically; the mane is indicated by a series of grooves in the outer ring.

These mounts are relatively  common in Roman Britain, for example the large group found in association with mid 1st to 2nd century burial caskets at Skeleton Green, Hertfordshire, (Borrill in Partridge 1981, 314–8)

A Wardle - March 2019

Plate 31.4

Pl.31, 4 .jpg

Copper-alloy ring-headed pin. 


The rectangular-sectioned shaft, which terminates in a ring at the upper end,  is decorated with bands of grooved decoration for about three quarters  of its length; the lower end is pointed.


The rectangular section makes it unlikely that this is a hair pin, and it is more probably a dress (cloak) fastener. 


A Wardle - March 2019

Plate 31.5

Pl.31, 5 .jpg

Copper-alloy figurine representing Hercules the hero son of Jupiter and Alcmene, who is shown with his typical attributes. He is nude with a club in his right hand and  a lionskin draped over the extended left arm,  with  a second lionskin draped over his head.


The pose is a variation of  the most common depiction of the hero where the  right arm holding the club is raised (Durham, Internet Archaeol 31).


Durham  (ibid) has identified 57 figurines of this popular hero from Romano British sites.  


A Wardle - March 2019

Plate 31.6

Pl.31, 6 .jpg

Copper-alloy or iron stylus. Circular-sectioned stem,  broken below the pointed end,  with a long well-shaped eraser with convex sides, clearly separated from the stem, at the other.


The drawing suggests that the stem is very corroded.


Styli, which were used with a wax tablet, were made in a variety of materials, copper-alloy,  bone and iron with iron perhaps the most numerous.  The principal types are described by W H Manning  (1985, 85).


A Wardle - March 2019

Plate 31.7


Circular copper-alloy bracelet made from thick rod, with overlapping knobbed terminals, and three groups of grooved decoration at each end.


A Wardle - March 2019

Plate 31.8


Hallstatt Serpentine copper-alloy brooch of Hull and Hawkes's Group G, dated to 700 BC or not long after.


There is a similar brooch supposedly from Cumbria. Other examples of the type come from around Villanova near Bologna in Italy.


This raises a problem. Many Halstatt brooches held in museum collections are derived from antique dealers’ collections that mixed British finds and imports from Mediterranean countries and elsewhere. On the other hand, we now know that Artis has proved to be a meticulous recorder of his information.


N Crummy - March 2019

Plate 31.9


Copper-alloy drop-handle with elaborately decorated terminals which would have been fitted to a wooden item of furniture, such as a box or chest.


They are relatively common finds on Romano-British sites and are sometimes found with the fittings by which they  were secured, as on a very  similar example from Colchester  (Crummy 1983,  81,  fig 85 no. 2134).

Crummy,  N  1983 Colchester Archaeological Report 2: The Roman small finds from excavations in Colchester 1971¬-9, Colchester


A Wardle - March 2019

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