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From Aug 2006 - Nov 2013 WeDig provided a live forum for diggers & fans of Vindolanda. It has now been mothballed and will be maintained as a live archive.

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Area A Late July-Early Aug
Topic Started: Aug 7 2010, 04:16 PM (2,346 Views)
SacoHarry
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Ooh, naughty indeed Sandy! It'll be interesting to see if & as more of the Antonine building comes to light.

Lesley, thanks again for the fabulous shot! Here is a condensed version:

Posted Image

For those trying to put it in context, here is the location of the wall (the thick line) & direction of the camera:

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My attempt at an understanding:

Lesley's picture shows multiple periods of the fort, spanning about 150 years of activity. The beautiful wall is from the Antonine period at Vindolanda -- mid-to-late 2nd Century, also known as "Stone Fort I." (The building that this wall was part of stood to the left; a roadway to the right.) The Antonine fort was about the same dimensions as the currently visible fort ("Stone Fort II"), with a few tweaks. It survived for several decades, til it was completely obliterated to the ground about AD 208 in the odd Severan period. Then Stone Fort II was built on top of the old leveled Stone Fort I in about AD 213.

The wall in the picture was located directly underneath the visible fort's via praetoria -- the beautifully flagged main road that ran straight from the HQ in the center of the fort out the north gate. This was expected, because in the 1930's Eric Birley discovered that the Antonine HQ was several feet east of its successor -- so any roads and buildings around it would have been shifted east too. In fact, to the right of the picture you can see the cobblestones of the Antonine roadway emerging.

Posted Image

In the color-coding above, blue is obviously the wall, green is the cobbled Antonine roadway, and red would have been inside the building.

The Antonine HQ faced south, suggesting that the "nicest" road out of the Antonine fort would have faced south too. This seems to be supported by the Antonine road showing up in this picture, which seems to be made of just ordinary cobblestones, nothing fancy.

Andy, how'd I do? :D
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Lesley
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Any suggestions for the cause of the gap (approximately 1 metre) which occurs half way along the visible length?
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SacoHarry
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Wonder if it was a later drain. After the Antonine fort was levelled, the old fort platform became home to dozens (hundreds?) of "roundhouses" aligned in east-west rows. (This was during the short, and weird, Severan period.) And if I remember right, they had east-west drains associated with them. Maybe that gap was from the Severan handiwork?
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MichaelH
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Photo 19th Aug. Looking south.
The Antonine barrack wall below the later flagged road.
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Attachments: August_039__Medium_.jpg (131.11 KB)
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MichaelH
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Aug. 8th. Photo looking east.
Another one of the barrack rooms being cleared of later period floor levels to leave the structure of the original AD 212 barracks. The intermediate north/south road is just beyond the far wall and itís the fourth room north of east/west road.
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Attachments: August_002__Large_.jpg (188.01 KB)
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MichaelH
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Aug 11th. Photo looking north.
In the foreground a layer of clay covered by layers of burnt material, coal and charcoal and thin clay. Above that were floor levels and packing to make them level. In the background is another room with a later period dividing wall on the left.


Some of the bits.
A quantity of iron objects, lots of pieces of pottery, (including amphora and mortaria) and a few pieces of glass were found, and other nice things like the glass bead! No, not the pound coin!!
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Attachments: August_005__Large_.jpg (159.63 KB)
Attachments: Picture1__Large_.gif (242.84 KB)
Edited by MichaelH, Aug 30 2010, 03:54 PM.
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MichaelH
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Aug 19th. Photo looking east.
On the left the remaining upper layers with possibly a hearth or oven at the far end. On the right the clay level floor, notice the better quality building stone in the walls of the earlier period barracks.
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Attachments: August_035__Large_.jpg (177.14 KB)
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Paul Bulgerin
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My dig buddy, Letty Steer, found the amphora late in the week of July 11-15 in area 98A. Letty left the next day but I had hoped to be able to excavate it but heavy rains the next week forced us to move to another area of the fort. It was still sitting there tempting us when I left Vindolanda on July 22. I hope to find out what, if anything, was in it when I read the field reports.

I dug and dug in the south side of that room and only uncovered dirt. I never even found a floor. I did find a Septimius Severus denarius and some clay game tokens in the fill of the room.

Thanks for the photos.

Paul Bulgerin
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Jim & Dilys
Jim & Dilys
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Hi Paul

Dilys had the job of fully exposing the amphora and investigating what was inside.

The handles and any possible stamps were missing, and the only finds inside were a nicely decorated spindle whorl and a glass bead that had a pin through it (possible earring). No pictures were taken.

We did find some other small finds in the same room mainly tile stamps
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Paul Bulgerin
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Thanks for letting me know about what was in the amphora. I can now rest easy at night.

Paul Bulgerin
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