Skip to comments.Fort find adds to potted history of Romans' boozing
Posted on 10/28/2011 9:08:07 PM PDT by SunkenCiv
The "spectacular" discovery of ancient pottery has revealed how the Romans wined and dined here in South Tyneside almost 2,000 years ago.
And far from sampling the delights of our local brews, it seems they still preferred to ship wines from the Mediterranean to their northern outpost.
Several pieces of a 3ft-tall wine jug have been found during an excavation just outside Arbeia Roman Fort.
The pottery will be stuck together to recreate the metre-high jug, which would have contained numerous litres of wine when it was imported to the fort between AD 250 and AD 350.
...archaeologist Nick Hodgson... is project manager for Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums, which conducted the dig at Arbeia with a team of volunteers, from June to September...
"Containers like this were used for bulk transportation. This is very significant because it is of a rather unusual late Roman type, which only started being imported from AD 250.
"It shows that the Romans still had a taste for Mediterranean wine at that period -- they had not gone native and adapted to local beer or wine.
"They were still importing it to South Shields. It's a spectacular and significant find."
The container is made of clay, and includes volcanic rock, and is believed to have been imported on a ship from Campania in Italy.
The jug was found in a roadside gully during the excavations, on the corner of Baring Street and Fort Street, South Shields. Smaller pieces of other similar jugs were also found.
A stone building was also discovered, which suggests there was still occupation and activity in the area in about AD 260, when most civilian settlements outside forts in the north of England had been abandoned.
(Excerpt) Read more at shieldsgazette.com ...
|GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother & Ernest_at_the_Beach|
To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list.
the general area of hadrian’s wall is large enough to need many days (maybe a week) to visit, walk, see, etc., and not get ruin exhaustion (too many ruins in a single day). I have been to some parts of it, and hope to be able to take time off to simply stay in north england a while later in my life. It is simply full of stuff to see, learn, do.
Finding a bar with a good cellarman centrally located would be a big plus as well.
Can they determine from those shards whether they contained wine or wine vinegar? A great deal of wine was made for vinegar in those days for medical and other antiseptic purposes and it was and is quite effective.
They would have made vinegar, but when an armed cohort wanders in, thirsty from the field, best approach is to serve the freakin’ wine. :’)
Vinegar was one of the barter items Roman soldiers rec’d as pay. The other was salt.
A pub? Near Scotland? How farfetched. ;’)
Lost Roman camp that protected against Germanic hordes found
I was just wondering if they actually could distinguish between a vessel that had contained wine and one that had contained wine vinegar. I would not be surprised if that is possible but it sounds like a difficult task.
I think they can...Bobby Ballard can. ;)
Thanks, Daffy! That is certainly close to an answer. Olive oil and fish would certainly leave a residue easily distinguished from wine. Oily substances would also have a much greater chance of surviving the centuries than those that are water soluble. There probably are chemical differences between wine and vinegar that would leave some trace fixed in the ceramic.
quality of real ale in british pubs depends on the cellarman handling the beer.
As I suspected...
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