Ariconium, Herefordshire: an Iron Age settlement and Romano-British 'small town' [Hardback]

Robin Jackson (Author)

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ISBN: 9781842174494 | Published by: Oxbow Books | Year of Publication: 2012 | Language: English 304p, b/w illus

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Ariconium, Herefordshire


The Roman 'small town' of Ariconium in southern Herefordshire has long been known as an important iron production centre but has remained very poorly understood. The town is suggested to have developed from a late Iron Age Dobunnic tribal centre, which owed its evident status and wide range of contacts to control of the production and distribution of Forest of Dean iron. Rapid expansion during the second half of the 1st century AD indicates that the local population was able to articulate rapidly with the economic opportunities the Roman conquest brought. The town developed as a typical small roadside settlement and a major iron production centre but a heavy reliance on ironworking appears to have made it especially vulnerable to the economic decline of the latter part of the 4th century. Some role as an administrative and political centre can be suggested during the late 4th century and may be implicated in the survival of the name Ariconium in the early medieval kingdom of Erynyg or Archenfield, however, firm archaeological evidence for any continuing occupation remains elusive.

Table of Contents

Section 1: Background
1. Introduction
2. The project
3. Site history

Section 2: Archaeological investigations: summary and analysis
4. The buried remains
5. Fieldwalking and other sources

Section 3: Erosion and deposition history
6. Soil erosion (Tony Lloyd)
7. Erosion across the settlement area: case studies

Section 4: The finds and environmental evidence
8. The Iron Age and Roman pottery (Steven Willis)
9. The brooches: an assessment of the collection (Donald Mackreth)
10. The coins (Cathy King)
11. Other small finds (Hilary Cool)
12. Worked stone (Ruth Shaffrey and Fiona Roe)
13. Building materials (Robin Jackson)
14. Ironworking residues (David Starley and Tim Young)
15. Charcoal from Bridgewater’s 1963 excavation (Rowena Gale)
16. Environmental evidence (Elizabeth Pearson)

Section 5: Archaeological synthesis
17. The character of the settlement
18. Settlement chronology
19. Trade and exchange
20. The ironworking industry

Section 6: Management, erosion and landuse
21. Management, erosion and landuse

Section 7: Concluding remarks
22. Summary of archaeological and historical evidence
23. Erosion and management
24. Areas for future research
25. Abbreviations

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