Posts Tagged ‘Vindolanda’

What a wonderful experience. Visited Vindolanda a couple of years ago – a great site

Stephen Liddell

I’ve been so busy with my tours that I haven’t had a day off since April 16th and so my blog posts are currently a bit shorter than usual.  Even last week when I would be walking for up to 11 hours a day, I still had to start and finish my day with what I call Admin Work.

One of the places I most enjoyed visiting last week was the old Roman site of Vindolanda.Vindolanda is one of Europe’s most important Roman archeological sites and every summer archeologists and volunteers from around the world descend on the place.

IMG_9628One photo can’t capture just how big a site Vindolanda is

The site itself comprises at least 8 successive forts of which several were occupied before Hadrian’s Wall was built.  Regiments from across the Empire were garrisoned here. The visible stone fort dates to the early third century and the impressive…

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There is a wonderful museum at Vindolanda recording the many artifacts both military and civilian found on the site.

There is a large collection of boots and shoes

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Also artifacts from the units stationed in the fort

Remains of a chamfron for a cavalry horse

Remains of a chamfron for a cavalry horse

 

Weapons found on site

Weapons found on site

Evidence of the connection of the northern border with other parts of Empire and trade

Coins found on site

Coins found on site

 

Samian ware from Gaul (France)

Samian ware from Gaul (France)

 

Vindolanda

Posted: July 20, 2016 in History, Northumberland, Roman History, UK
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Aerial view of remains at Vindolamda

Aerial view of remains at Vindolamda

The first Roman activity on this site dates to between 74 and 85AD. Between these dates and the withdrawal of Roman troops in 410AD there were no fewer than 9 forts built on this site. 4 of these pre-date the building of Hadrian’s Wall in AD120s. These formed part of the open frontier based on the Stanegate road from Carlisle to Newcastle.  Later forts were associated with the garrisons on Hadrian’s Wall a mile to the north.

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The visible remains today are from the third century stone fort c213AD. At this time it was manned by the 4th cohort of Gauls (recruited in France).   At its height, it is estimated that the population of Vindolanda fort and its civilian settlement may have been 3000-4000 of which approx. a 1000 would have been military personnel. These would have been auxiliary (non-legionary) troops who served as the garrison for the towers on the wall.

Main Street

Main Street

 

Granaries  showing raised floor

Granaries showing raised floor

 

The items found in this building suggest it was a tavern

The items found in this building suggest it was a tavern

 

A house in the Vicus (town)

A house in the Vicus (town)

 

Recobstruction of woodern tower and wall

Reconstruction of wooden tower and wall

 

Reconstruction of stome tower and wall

Reconstruction of stone tower and wall

Interestingly unlike many other Roman forts the withdrawal of Roman forces and administration in the 5th century did not lead to an abandonment of the site and there is evidence of continued occupation into the 9th century before it was finally abandoned.