27 October 2021 The Future is the Product of the Past

Archaeologists are deciphering Roman history along Dere Street, one of the oldest roadways in Britain

Final archaeological finds uncovered as part of a major road improvement in the north of England have shed new insight into the region’s Roman past.

The last study, which focuses on Cataractonium – a Roman fort and town that has since evolved into Catterick, North Yorkshire – documents findings made as part of Highways England’s £400 million A1 Leeming to Barton improvement.

More than 62,000 objects, including 2.8 tonnes of animal bone and 2.5 tonnes of pottery, were discovered from the settlement, providing unique insights into the civilian and military populations.

Many unusual and exotic objects were discovered, including the oldest pistachio nut ever discovered in Britain, incense burners, ivory bracelets, and a carnelian intaglio showing Hercules and the lion that would have been put into a finger-ring.

Other discoveries include a carved phallus on a reused bridge stone, a brooch depicting a hare, and an Anglo-Saxon dog burial.

The excavation of a late 1st-century well at Fort Bridge produced a plethora of well-preserved organic findings, including the oldest pistachio nut known in Britain.

Intaglio found at Cataractonium.
Intaglio found at Cataractonium. Photo: Highways England

The staff of the Northern Archaeological Association (NAA) spent more than three years investigating the remains exposed during construction, revealing not only previously known Roman sites, but also unknown sites, such as the road to Scurragh House The settlement of Bian, 3.5 kilometers north of the cataract, together with the remains of its agricultural hinterland, as well as the country’s important Roman contact period site in the Cape of Scotland.

The discoveries at Cataractonium reflect the civilian and military components of the settlement. The analysis of these items, as well as the sediments from where they were found, has been utilized to explain the tale of this significant location, which was most certainly held by Romans from the AD70s until the late 4th or early 5th century.

The excavation discoveries are currently housed at the Yorkshire Museum in York, where they will be preserved, presented where appropriate, and made available for future research and learning.

The excavation of a late 1st-century well at Fort Bridge yielded a wealth of well-preserved organic finds, including the earliest pistachio nut known in Britain.
The excavation of a late 1st-century well at Fort Bridge yielded a wealth of well-preserved organic finds, including the earliest pistachio nut known in Britain. Photo: Highways England

Dr. Jonathan Shipley, AECOM Principal Heritage Consultant, in a press release said:

“The archaeological works undertaken at Cataractonium represent some of the most significant excavations undertaken of a Roman town and have hugely increased our understanding of the development of the site.”

“The remains also tell the story of the people who lived in and around the town that developed alongside the Roman fort and represent a wonderful link with the modern-day settlement that has developed because of the military camp at Catterick.”

“The works have also added to our understanding of the Roman road known as Dere Street, which the A1 follows in this area, with evidence of Roman improvements to the road network mirroring the current commitments of Highways England to improve this key piece of infrastructure.”

Cataractonium, about 100 miles distant, has a long history of archaeological study, garnering major attention throughout the twentieth century when the A1 was initially built through the Roman town.

Archaeologists from around the country are urging volunteers to help at future digs, as part of the Council for British Archaeology’s (CBA) annual Festival of Archaeology (17 July-1 August).

Throughout the summer, archaeologists piecing together the history of Hull’s Trinity Burial Ground, as part of the Highways England’s £355m A63 Castle Street major project, have been holding successful virtual webinars and keeping the public informed on a regular basis through a dedicated webpage.

The digital book Cataractonium, and other volumes associated with the A1 Leeming to Barton excavations, are available without charge from the Archaeology Data Service.

Banner
Related Post

Hidden past of Ani ruins in eastern Turkey to be uncovered by excavations

31 May 2021

31 May 2021

Archaeological excavations will reveal the historical mystery behind the ruins of Ani on the present-day Turkey-Armenia border. The Ani archaeological...

The Earliest Evidence of a Domesticated Dog in the Arabian Peninsula

9 April 2021

9 April 2021

Dogs have been the best friend of humans since ancient times. Although it is not known exactly when dogs were...

The oldest evidence of human use of tobacco was discovered in Utah

11 October 2021

11 October 2021

According to recent research, burnt seeds discovered in the Utah desert suggest that humans used tobacco initially and that some...

Artifacts for sale offered at a Dutch auction house returned to Peru

9 July 2021

9 July 2021

The Dutch government announced in a press release today that the artifacts that were put up for sale at an...

409 silver coins, found in the Mleiha area of Sharjah, were inspired by Alexander the Great and the Seleucid dynasty

17 July 2021

17 July 2021

409 silver coins dating to the 3rd century have been found in the Mleiha area of Sharjah in the United...

Rare biblical ‘balsam tree’ found depicted on ancient Jerusalem amethyst seal

21 October 2021

21 October 2021

Archaeologists working in the Old City of Jerusalem have discovered an engraved amethyst seal in the Second Temple, thought to...

Oldest Recorded Gynecological Treatment

7 February 2021

7 February 2021

In their latest research, scientists have come across a treatment practice in a mummy from 4000 years ago, as written...

To The West of Turkey Ancient Quarry Found

28 March 2021

28 March 2021

Turkey is very lucky in terms of ancient settlements. It is home to many unexplored artifacts, along with well-preserved ancient...

Petalodus shark teeth found for the first time in China

29 August 2021

29 August 2021

A 290 million-year-old fossil of a shark with petal-shaped teeth has been discovered in China. Seven well-preserved Petalodus teeth were...

Theater of Perinthos Ancient City to be unearthed

9 August 2021

9 August 2021

The theater area in the Ancient City of Perinthos, whose history dates back to 600 BC, will be unearthed during...

Google Earth Helped Archaeologists Make İmportant Discoveries in Leicestershire

26 April 2021

26 April 2021

After Google Earth revealed traces of underground structures, archaeologists digging at a Roman settlement in Leicestershire say they have made...

‘Miniature Pompeii’ found beneath Astra cinema in Verona

15 June 2021

15 June 2021

Archaeologists have uncovered a “miniature Pompeii” in the shape of a well-preserved ancient edifice near Verona, Italy. An old Roman...

Brick tombs dating from the Jin Dynasty have been unearthed in Shanxi Province

15 August 2021

15 August 2021

Archaeologists discovered two brick tombs at an old cemetery with 14 crypts in north China‘s Shanxi Province. The findings offer...

Holy Virgins of Ancient Rome

24 February 2021

24 February 2021

Rome was not a place that promised a lot for women. Lower-class women were typically public, helping to earn a...

Bronze Age Treasure Found in Swedish Forests

30 April 2021

30 April 2021

A man who studied the forest to make a map for the orienteering club in western Sweden made an incredible...

Comments
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *