The possible Roman vineyard at North Thoresby

The possibility of the discovery of Roman vine cultivation at the Eastern Bypass excavations, combined with a brief conversation on twitter with Dr Eleanor Scott and Dr Caitlin Green, made me think it was worth taking a quick look here at the other suggested evidence of a vineyard in Lincolnshire, at North Thoresby. Continue reading

The Horkstow chariot mosaic: sporting depiction or allegory of fate?

I’ve mentioned the large and wonderful mosaic pavement from the Horkstow villa a couple of times in recent posts, but it seems remiss of me not to have discussed its best known and most significant element – the depiction of a dramatic chariot race, unique in Britain. Continue reading

A previously unidentified giant from Roman Lincolnshire

No, this isn’t a post about very tall people, but about mythological giants – the race of creatures in Greek and Roman mythology who played an important role in the story of the establishment of the Olympian pantheon. They are not commonly encountered in a Romano-British context, but are depicted on one of Lincolnshire finest mosaics and on a previously unidentified copper alloy statuette which I believe also represents a giant. Continue reading

Worshipping the party god – evidence of Bacchus in Lincolnshire

I posted a little while ago about a candlestick find from Branston with possible connections to the god Bacchus, and I want to follow up on that subject here by looking at the other artefacts from Roman Lincolnshire with connections to the Roman god of wine and revelry. Continue reading

Interior decoration at Lincoln’s Roman baths

Bath houses are ubiquitously Roman structures – part of the suite of public buildings that defined a Roman town and indicative of an attitude to cleanliness and socialising that became one of Rome’s primary cultural exports. Only one public bath house is currently known in Lincoln, though it is possible that others await discovery. Excavated in the late 1950s, the complex is only partially understood and has never been published, but I want to focus here on the evidence we have of the interior decoration of the floors and walls of its various rooms. Continue reading

Of Hercules and Proserpina: classical mythology in Roman Lincolnshire

Let’s face it, the average person in Roman Britain wasn’t sat around in a toga in an expensively decorated villa reading the works of Virgil. The level of knowledge of classical literature and mythology in the province is a fascinating subject though, as we get occasional tantalising glimpses of a level of education and understanding that might be considered above average. Continue reading