Archive for July 28, 2015

The site of Segedunum Fort from the Tower Observatory

The site of Segedunum Fort from the Tower Observatory

Wallsend is now a suburb of Newcastle. The name dates from the 11th century and refers to the most eastern end of Hadrians Wall, which runs from The west coast at the Solway Firth to the Tyne estuary on the east coast. The wall was built during the reign of Hadrian (cAD 122) as a frontier line for the empire. It took about 6 years to build.

 

Bust of Emperor Hadrian

Bust of Emperor Hadrian

The Roman name for Wallsend was Segedunum a word composed from two British words meaning ‘strong place’ and ‘victory fort’. It is not known why the Romans used British words for the names of forts, but we can imagine that they were a message to the conquered people in a language they would understand, since few Celts would have spoken Latin.

Barrack block at Segedunum

Barrack block at Segedunum

Central building complex at Segedunum Fort

Central building complex at Segedunum Fort

A model of Segedunum fort c 200AD

A model of Segedunum fort c 200AD

The Fort at Segedunum was occupied by a mixed auxilliary force of cavalry and infantry. In AD 200 this comprised of 480 Infantry and 120 cavalry, although this may have varied over time. It was occupied for over 300 years.

Cavalry auxiliary c 200AD

Cavalry auxiliary c 200AD

Pottery found at Segedunum fort

Pottery found at Segedunum fort

Jar found at Segedunum fort

Jar found at Segedunum fort