Museum Musings May 2021 – Same Again Samian

Samian ware is one of the most common finds on Roman sites, but on the PAS it is fairly uncommon. This is largely because it is ceramic and not picked up by a metal detector. Roman pottery in West Berkshire Museum Samian was produced in several areas of modern day France and Germany.  Based forms, …more

Finds of the Month – April 2021

After a couple of weeks away from the blog I’m back with finds of the month. The good news is that I’ll be able to see these shortly as I will be meeting finders from the end of May. There were few finds in this month but that is because I am preparing to see …more

Finds of the Month – March 2021

Still working through lockdown and receiving objects through email, but that hasn’t stopped some rather interesting finds coming in. Most recently is this copper-alloy Roman object. I say object because at around 40mm it is too big to be a sestersius. The portrait appears to be Antonine in date and could be of Faustina, the …more

You Wear It Well – Roman Crossbow Brooches

Recently I posted a picture of the sole Roman crossbow brooch from Berkshire, found in the parish of Welford, on Instagram and asked people “Which way up is correct?” The results of this were about 50/50. The traditional way to show a crossbow brooch on images is with the axis bar, what we call the …more

Sweet Child O’ Mine – Roman Putti Figurines

Late last year I tweeted a Roman putto (child) figurine that was brought in for recording. The statue is in the form of a chubby and naked winged boy, a putto, seated with his arm outstretched and bent at the elbows. His right hand is broken and his left arm is holding a ball. Copyright: The …more

Finds of the Month – February 2021

It was getting to the point recently that I didn’t think I would have much for Finds of the Month. However, very recently some rather interesting things landed in my inbox which I’ll be seeing once museums reopen. The first is, what would have been in its day, a very decorative Millefiori stud, dated to …more

Keep it secret, keep it safe – Roman seal boxes

One of my favourite Roman objects is seal boxes. Colin Andrews (2012) research demonstrated that these boxes were more likely to seal up bags rather than writing tablets, as was previously thought. There are a couple of examples from Berkshire. The first is the top of a lozenge shaped box. The top is decorated with …more

Finds of the Month – January 2021

With the current lockdown restrictions metal detecting hasn’t been allowed this month. However, I have still been receiving finds from pre-lockdown and here are a few I have recorded this month. First up is the featured find from last week. A Silver-plated contemporary copy of a denarius of Septimius Severus (AD193 – 211). There was …more

Septimius Severus and the case of RIC321

This week I recorded a coin that I have not seen before and the denarius at this time has an interesting story. BERK-6C680C Copyright: The Portable Antiquities Scheme, License: CC-BY 2.0 The coin in question is one issued during the reign of Septimius Severus (AD193 – 211). The coin is as follows: Silver-plated contemporary copy of …more

Finds of the Month – December 2020

This new series will detail my Top 10 finds recorded each month. Here are those from December. First up is this Republican Denarius of L Cassius Longinus minted in 78BC (BERK-1037DC). On one side is the head of a young Bacchus or Liber while on the other is the head of Libera (Proserpina) left. It …more