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Viewing Single Post From: Excavations of 1931
SacoHarry
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THE FINDS
1. Inscriptions, etc.
(a) Fragment of an upper millstone of Andernach lava, with the inscription (apparently complete) :

Ɔ A D “Century of Ad ...”

Another millstone with an inscription on it, found at Aesica in 1895 (EE ix, 1197), is now in the Black Gate museum; in that instance, the name of the centurion is followed by MOLA VII[ “millstone no. 7 (or 8 or 9)”; our example can hardly have had such a continuation, unless the spacing was considerably wider. Unstratified.

(b) (Site D: on rampart.) The greater part of a samian mortarium, Dr. 45, with part of the owner's name scratched on the curve of the outside : F O F
There does not appear to be any name of the Roman period beginning Fof-, but there may be dialect involved. The mortarium is Lezoux ware, and presumably dates to about A.D. 200.

(c) Potters' stamps on samian vessels :
(1) (FS 30: site C, unstratified.) ADVOCISI on Dr. 37, below the decoration, of which little survives. Mid-second century Lezoux ware; cf. Oswald, Index, pp. 5 and 423.
(2) (FS 43: site B, unstratified.) BA[ retrograde on a splinter of Dr. 37. For Banuus of Lezoux, cf. Oswald, Index, pp. 38 and 357. An example of this potter's work, found at South Shields, has figured several times as a tail-piece in past volumes of Proceedings.
(3) (St. 4: site B, unstratified.) MICCI[ on a splinter from the base of a platter. To judge by the fabric, this is the East Gaulish Miccio; cf. Oswald, Index, pp. 205 and 406.
(4) (St. 2: site B, ditch B.) OFSILVINI on Dr. 27; the ILV are badly blurred. Silvinus worked at La Graufesenque into the Flavian period; cf. Oswald, Index, pp. 302 and 420. The stamp has also been noted at Carlisle and Corbridge.
(5) (St. 3: site B, ditch B.) [L]TER SECVND on Dr. 18. This potter worked at Montans in the Flavian period; cf. Oswald, Index, p. 290. The stamp has also been noted at Chesters, Corbridge, and at Castlecary on the Scottish Wall, where it can be dated to within a year or two of A.D. 80.

2. Figured samian (plates xxix and xxx).
(a) (FS 1: site B, ditch A.) Another two pieces of this vessel1 were found, so that a more complete reconstruction of its decoration is now possible; the attribution to M.CRESTIO is confirmed by the occurrence of an ovolo used only by that potter and CRVCVRO.
(b) (British Museum : from the Bank of England.) This piece, with the stamp of M.CRESTIO, bears a close general resemblance to FS 1; though it is typologically rather later, since the two zones of decoration (reminiscent of Dr. 29) have given place to one : moreover, the stamp of the bear appears to be rather more worn, as is also the case with the leaf in the four corners of the main panel. I have to thank Mr. Reginald A. Smith, F.S.A., Keeper of the Department of British and Medieval Antiquities in the British Museum, for permission to publish this piece, which finally confirms the attribution of FS 1 to M.CRESTIO.
(c) (Binchester : in the possession of Mr. James McIntyre.) This piece is a further example of the work of M.CRESTIO, while it provides additional evidence for the Flavian occupation of Binchester. The small dog to r. (D. 920) occurs on a Dr. 37 by the
same potter in the British Museum (M 554).
(d-f) By the kindness of Mr. McIntyre I am able to figure three further pieces from Binchester that came from a single rubbish pit : d is a typical late Flavian South Gaulish vessel, with coarse wavy line, winding scroll, and “arrow head” ornaments (probably made with the tip of a large leaf stamp); e is the central Gaulish, with the fine wavy line, a characteristic ovolo, and the boar (D. 826) that was later used by CINNAMVS; while f belongs to the most characteristic of the group of potters that appear to have worked at Vichy, with the “ram's horn” wreath, corded ovolo, fine wavy line, and well-cut decorative details that make their ware so attractive. I am again indebted to Mr. J. A. Stanfield for the drawings, and for the partial restoration of f from a fragment in the London Museum; Mr. Stanfield is at present engaged in a special study of the “Vichy group” of potters, which may be expected to be of great value for the excavator of early second-century sites.

This little group from Binchester is of especial interest as an example of the types of figured samian that may be expected to occur in association on a site occupied in the first twenty years of the second century; the absence from Scotland of pieces with the decoration of this period (which, as f shows, is very distinctive, and quite unlike the south Gaulish products that it supplied the place of) makes it extremely difficult to suppose that the Agricolan occupation of the country north of Cheviot continued into the second century; but such decoration occurs at Corbridge, Chesters, Chesterholm, Nether Denton and Carlisle—all, as it seems, forts belonging to an earlier stage of the frontier than Vallum or Wall; here we have it from Binchester as well, and indeed there seems to be no military site in Britain, whose occupation can be shown to extend from the end of the first century into the principate of Hadrian, where such decoration, or other types used by the potters of Vichy and Lezoux in this period, have not been noted.

1 Cf. AA 4, VIII, p. 204, no. r.
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Excavations of 1931 · Reports & Papers