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Tyne and Wear HER(4357): South Shields Roman Fort, Iron Age roundhouse - Details

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S Tyneside

South Shields Roman Fort, Iron Age roundhouse

South Shields




Round House (Domestic)


Iron Age

Documentary Evidence

Excavations during 1992-94 and 1999 revealed part of an iron-age farming settlement, including a round house and pits of late Iron Age date beneath the parade ground of the Roman fort. An extensive system of narrow rig cultivation lay 10 metres south-west of the round house. This was later cut by a boundary gully and bank. The roundhouse was 8.75 metres in diameter; its wall-slot was 0.20 metres wide and 0.33 metres deep. Circular post-impressions survived in places in the bottom of the slot, confirming that it had held closely-spaced uprights. The slot was filled with sand containing charcoal and daub flecks, probably representing a mixture of the decayed wall base and destruction deposit. A gully, 1.20 metres wide and 0.84 metres deep lay beyond the slot. Between the slot and gully was a clay bank with postholes cut into it. These presumably supported the eaves of the conical roof. Inside the house was a central hearth. There was a scoop or hollow inside the door, containing ash and burnt wattle, and a number of other hollows in the house contained metal artefacts, including an adze head and copper alloy fragments. The adze had been buried, with its haft broken off, against the interior face of the wall. The roundhouse was destroyed by fire some time between 390 BC and 170 BC. The burnt remains of a spelt wheat crop was found outside the house.




<< HER 4357 >> South Tyneside MBC, Newcastle City Council... 2002 South Shields: An Archaeological Assessment and Strategy, second draft, p 11 N. Hodgson, G.C. Stobbs & M. Van Der Veen... 2001, An Iron-Age Settlement and Remains of Earlier Prehistoric Date beneath, The Archaeological Journal, Vol 158, 2001, p 62-160 N. Hodgson, 2001, A Mesolithic, Neolithic and Iron Age Site beneath Arbeia Roman Fort, South Shields, Archaeology North, No. 19, Winter 2001

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