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    Bridge over troubled water: the Roman finds from the River Tees at Piercebridge in context

    Eckardt, H. and Walton, P. J. (2021) Bridge over troubled water: the Roman finds from the River Tees at Piercebridge in context. Britannia Monograph Series 34. London, UK: Society for the Promotion of Roman Studies. ISBN 9780907764489.


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    Book synopsis: When Roman objects are discovered in rivers across the north-western provinces of the Roman Empire, they are often interpreted as the accidental losses of travellers or as rubbish deposits revealed by fluvial erosion; this is in contrast to prehistoric assemblages, which are usually seen as ritual offerings.Our project challenges these assumptions by publishing an entire riverine artefactual assemblage for the first time and placing it into its archaeological context. British material has not previously been studied at all, and on the continent only exceptional assemblages like the large vessel hoard from Neupotz or high status objects like swords have been studied. To remedy this situation, we are publishing all the finds from the Tees at Roman Piercebridge (3,619 objects) as a Britannia monograph, including objects such as fishing weights and furniture fittings as well as gold jewellery and coinage. Interpretative chapters explore the significance of the different categories of finds while the individual objects are all recorded on the Portable Antiquities Scheme website ( We employ Correspondence Analysis to compare the composition of the riverine assemblage to those excavated at nearby sites, and demonstrate that its chronological and functional profile differs significantly from settlement sites, making ritual deposition of at least some finds highly likely. There are also chapters on Roman riverine deposition and the significance of bridges across the Roman world, as well as the archaeological context of the discovery.


    Item Type: Book
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): Roman archaeology, votive deposition, material culture, religion, northern Britain, riverine archaeology, Roman army, ritual, rubbish
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Historical Studies
    Depositing User: Philippa Walton
    Date Deposited: 10 Jan 2022 18:42
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 18:13


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