How very exciting! I have just had a phone call from Dave, who is the secretary of the Trowbridge MDC and a fan of all things Roman, with some very exciting news! Last week I received an email from Dave to say he had found a few siliquae, was writing to the coroner, and would let me have them at the next club meeting. I have to admit I had half forgotten about them until Dave rang me today. The conversation went something like this:
‘Hi Katie, I have a few things to tell you’
‘Oh yes of course! How exciting about your siliquae hoard! Your first hoard! You must be so chuffed! How many have you got?’
‘About 30 I think…’
‘30!! I thought you had five or six! That’s fantastic, I really look forward to seeing them’
‘…but the real reason I’m ringing is to tell you that I’ve found another hoard, and its in a pot!’
Dave had always bemoaned the fact he had never found a hoard. He has made some super finds over the years but that hoard had eluded him – which is perhaps why he found another while searching for the dispersed coins of his first! Hoards are like buses maybe, you wait for one and two come along at once…
The really weird thing was that just yesterday I had been talking to the county archaeologist and her team about devising a plan of action if a hoard (or something that needed excavating) was discovered in Wiltshire. I have come to rely on the good will of Wessex Archaeology, the Wiltshire Archaeology Field Group and local independent archaeologists in these situations in the past. But Dave’s hoard was something for Somerset to deal with, as it had been found over the county boundary, and I was really pleased our very own Naomi Payne (ex-Somerset FLO and now HER Officer for Somerset) would be the first port of call. The first port of call that is, after I rang Anna (Booth, Somerset FLO) to tell her the exciting news!
And that is pretty much where we are now. Dave has two days off work next week so we are trying to arrange the best day to go and do the excavation. Anna, Naomi and I have spent the day emailing each other trying to arrange dates and swapping info. Naomi has searched the Somerset HER and discovered a record of a siliqua hoard found in the parish on the 19th century. Could the siliquae Dave found be part of this same hoard? Unfortunately there is no findspot on the HER, but siliquae hoards are sufficiently unusual for two to have been found in the same parish. But what am I saying – we have two hoards from the same field here which is really unusual, so anything could go!
Dave emailed through pictures of a few pieces of pot and coins that had been in the soil above the hoard (probably disturbed by the plough) and we can tell from this the coins are radiates and probably late 3rd century in date. So roughly a hundred years earlier than the siliqua. What is going on at this site? I can’t wait to get out on site next week!