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others (as we have already found), who visit it in our
absence. The main piece is covered up now pretty deeply.

No. L, I ought to have said, was a plain

pavement of a bluish colour, and the aj^artment was quite

small in which it was found The walls were

well built and faced. Quantities of stone, variously



ROMAN HEREFOrwDRHTEE. 355

painted were fouRcl, also coins and mill stones." A vongh
plan of the rooms and pavements is o-iven in tlie letter.

I am not aware wlietber the I)ean m;i,de any sul)se-
fjuent excavations, hnt Mr. W]-ight, in lils W antic rimj.^
of an Antiquary, says that ''al)out 1840" the Dean
found a pavement thirteen feet long and two feet wide ;
the tesserae were red, white, blue, and. a dark coloui'.
Is this one of the pavements described in the Dean's
letter, or another ;' Certainly, a portion of one pavement
discovered by him is in the Hereford Museum, whilst
another, as the letter asserts, was covered up again.

From the account of the site given by Mr. Hardwick,
the owner, it appears that the soil within the area is very
dark, almost black, and quantities of charred wood, and
molten iron and glass, have been found. The stones
having been removed from the surface as deep as the
plough penetrates, very good crops of corn are now raised.
The land is loose and friable, and fine as a garden. In
the drought of summer, streets and foundations of houses
are quite visible in the verdure. The principal street ran
in a direct Hne through the town from east to west, and
was twelve or fifteen feet in width. " with a ofutter alono-
the centre to carry oft' refuse water, as is traceable by the
difference in the growth of crops. The streets appear to
have been gravelled." Mr. Hardwick also says that no
doubt many of the buildings were of timber, " for along
the lines of streets, at regular distances, the plinths in
which the timbers were inserted have been taken up, the
holes being cut about four inches square, the ])linths
measured two feet in each direction, and lay two feet
beneath the present surface."

The sites of the gates of the castrum, fnuv in n\unber,
were until lately (if not at present) plainly visiljle. They
nearly correspond with the cardinal points.

Amongst the most interesting relics found at Ken-
chester are two inscriptions. The first was found at the
close of the last century in the foundation of the north
wall of the castrum, and is on a milUarium or milestone of
the Emperor Numerianus, a.d. 282. The inscription as
given by Mr. Lysons in the Archceolor/ia, vol. xv, p. 391,
Appendix, and PI. 27, fig. 2, is —

VOL. XXXIV 2 z



350 ROMAN HETIEFORDSIIIRE.

IMP. C

MAIL AVR

NVMEKIAN

O

R. P. C. D.

The first four lines plainly read Imp(eratore) C((emre)
Mar{co, Attr{elio) Numeriano, but the last line, as
given in the copy, is unintelligible. Professor Hilbner
suggests that the letters may be pfavg. As the
letters rp are found in an inscription at Caermarthen
standing for reipiihUcce, I think it probable that
BONO has been obliterated from the fourth line, and
that the fifth has originally been R. P. NATO. Mr.
Lysons gives this last line as very doubtful, it being
nearly obliterated. In 1800 this stone was in the posses-
sion of the R-ev. Charles J. Bird, f.s.a., but has since
been completely lost sight of If any one in the neigh-
bourhood of Hereford can give any clue as to its where-
abouts at present, they will confer a boon on archaeo-
logists. This is the only inscription to the Emperor
Numerian found in Britain, and they are very rare upon
the continent.

The second inscripti<in occurs upon a small square piece
of stone, one of the well-known medicine stamps of the
rioman oculists. It is inscribed on all four sides as
follows : —

(1 ) (-^O

T. VIXDAC • ARIO T. VINDACIAR

YiSTI ANICET OYISTI NARD

(3.) (4.)

*. VTNDAC ARI T. VINDAOARIO

OVISTI CIILORON VISTl *******

The asterisks mark missing letters. On the upper surface
the stone is inscribed senior, on the lower sen., the latter
doubtless the abbreviation of the former, both being
prol)ably made subsequent to the larger inscription, and
referring to the owner's name. All four of the sides it
will be seen bear the words T. vindaci ariovisti ; to the
first is added the name of the medicine anicet(vm), to
the second another medicine nard(vm), to the third
the name of the medicine chloron, whilst in the fourth
the name of the medicine has been obliterated. The
Enfdish translation sim|)ly is tliat they are the Aniceturii,
the Nardum, and tlie Ch/oron of Titu.'i Vindacius Ario-



ROMAN HEREFORDSHIRE. 357

vistas. Tlie latter name '' Ai'iovistiis" is German. This
stamp was exhibited in 1848 to the Britisli Archaeological
Association at Worcester by Mr. II. Johnson of Hereford,
in whose possession it then was. (Vide their Jouiiml,
vol. iv, p. 280). At the same meeting Mr. Johnson
exhibited a horse's head in bronze, a])parently made for a
knife handle, a bronze fibula, some jet Ijeads, and eight
brass coins of Caransius, one of a nniqne type, all found at
Kenchester. Mr. Johnson had in 18G7, when the Cam-
brian Archaeological Association held their congress in
Hereford, n, large collection of coins from the site. They
were chiefly of the Lower Empire. Mrs. Hardwick of
Credenhill had also another collection, besides a number
of fibulas and bronze figures. Mr. Wright, in Wanderings
of an Antiquarij, p. 38, engraves and describes the figures
of a mouse, a lion, a cock, and a small hatchet or cidtrum,
all in bronze, found at Kencliester {probably children's
toys), whilst on the 4th December, 1874, Mr. Soden
Smith exhibited to the Institute a Koman bronze ring
with original intaglio on glass plate, in imitation of niccolo
onyx, from the same site. Lewis (Top. Diet, of Enr/Iand,
edit. 1850, article ' Kenchester') tells us that in the
hypocaust found in 1670 hy Sir John Hoskyns there were
entire leaden pipes.

In 1829 a small bronze image of Hermes was found in
excavating some ground in the city of Hereford. It was
probably a lar {Live i pool Times, March 24th, 1829).
There was also found some years ago, in excavations in
one of the streets of Hereford, a Roman altar which had
borne an inscription, but it was completely defaced. It
is now in the local museum. The Rev. H. M. Scarth
informs me that in the second line he thought he could
trace the letters —

. . N I I V
and suu-crests the word MiNERVyE as beinof contained in
the line, but all this is doubtful. Probably both the
altar and the lar came from Kenchester originally, for
there appears to 1)6 nothing Roman at Hereford. Many
inscribed stones from Kenchester have certainly j^erished,
Mr. Wright tells us that in reply to a (piery as to whether
any inscribed stones had been found, asked of an old
villager at Kenchester, the old man re^jlied in the



3o8 ROMAN HEREFORDSHIRE.

affirmative, but added that " tliey meant Jiouglit." From
the discovery of the molten lead and glass and burnt
wood, the destruction of Magna, like that of Ariconium,
would apjiear to have been by fire.

The third station, Ariconium, which occurs only in the
thirteenth Iter of Antoninus, and is there stated to be
fifteen miles from Glevum (Gloucester), is now generally
allowed to have been situated at Bury -hill, near Bollitree,
about three miles east of Ross. At this place there is an
area of about 100 acres, over which the soil presents a
deep Ijlack colour, and in which numbers of Roman coins,
fragments of pottery, fibula3, &c., are found. Horsley
conjectured Ariconium to have been somewhere in this
neighbourhood, but was not aware of the existence of the
site of any Roman town in the locality. As Mr. Thomas
Wriglit, in his Wanderings of an Antiquary, p. 25, says,
" But while his (Horsley's) conjectures as to the exact
locality fell first upon one spot and then upon another,
he was totally ignorant that close within the range of his
conjectures, on the bank I have just being describing, an
extensive thicket of briars and brushwood only j^artially
covered from view the broken walls and the rubbish of
the very Ariconium of which he was in search. Such
was the condition of the old town at Weston under
Penyard, in the middle of the last century. Soon after
that period, the proprietor of the estate, a Mr. Meyrick,
determined to clear the ground and turn it into cultiva-
tion, and when he came to stub up the bushes, he found
some of the walls even of the houses standing above ground.
All these were cleared away, not without considerable
difficulty ; and in tlie course of the clearing, great quan-
tities of antiquities of all sorts are understood to have
been found."

Tu vol. vi, p. 514, of Britton and Brayley's Beauties of
England and Wales, {published 1805), we have a fuller
account of these discoveries. Tliere were found " an
immense quantity of Roman coins and some British.
Among tlie antiquities were fibulas, lares, lachrymatories,
l;tmps, rings, and fragments of tesselated pavements.
Some pillars were also discovered with stones liaving holes
for tlic jaml)S of doors, and a vault or two in which was
earth of a Ijlack colour and in a cincrous state.



ROMAN lll':llEl'OUU,SHJJ^E. 35*J

Innumei'al)Ie pieces of grey ciiid red pottery lie scattered
(at present, i.e. 1805) over the whole tract, some of thejin

of patterns l^y no means inelegant Some of

the large stones found among the ruins of this station,
and which appear to have been used in building, display
strong marks of hre. During the course of last sunnner
(1804), in widening a road that crosses the land, several
skeletons were discovered ; and also the remains of a stone
wall, apparently the front of a building ; the stones were
well worked and of considerable size. The earth within
what appeared to have been the interior of the building-
was extremely black and sliining." The same writer also
informs us that the coins, which were chiefly of the Lower
Empire, were of gold, silver, and copper.

Mr. Wright further tells us (pp. 25-26) " that all the
remains that were neai" the surface were destroyed, and the
antiquities which might have enriched some local museum

appear to have been scattered about and lost

The place can hardly be said to have been explored by
antiquaries, but Roman antiquities are often turned up
by the plough, and Roman coins are so plentiful that
they may be procured of almost any of the cottagers. I
was told that a gentleman of the neighbourhood riding
across one of tlie fields had recently picked up a rather
large Roman bronze statuette. Finding it somewhat
cumbrous he put it up in the fork of a tree, intending to
take it as he returned, but somel^ody had discovered it in
the interval and carried it away. The present possessor
of the land is Mr. Palmer of Bolitre, close to the site of
the town called Aske Farm, perhaps fi'om the ashes or
cinders in the neighbourhood. . . . One of his (Mr.
Palmer's) men, Avhom we questioned on the subject, (of
antiquities) could give us no further information than that
he knew such things were found, and he remembered that
about twenty years ago when they Avere digging a trench
in the fiekl where the old town stood, the labourers came
upon walls and the foundations of buildings. The gentle
slope of the ground on the western side of the site of the
town towards Penyard is called Cinder Hill, and we have
only to tuiii up the surface to discover that it consists of
an immense mass of iron scoriae. It is evident that the
Roman town of Ariconium possessed very extensive forges



360 liOMxiN HEREFORDSHIRE.

and smelting t'urnaces, and that their cinders were thrown
out on this side of the town close to the walls. No doubt
the side of the hill was here originally more abrupt until
it was filled up by these materials. The floors of some of
the forges are said to have been discovered, but as I have
just stated the place is almost unknown to antiquaries."

In September, 1870, the members of the British
Archaeological Association, during their Hereford Con-
gress, visited the site, when the above-mentioned Mr.
Palmer sent a collection of articles found on the site for
inspection, which form the subject of a paper in the
Journal of the Association, vol. xxvii, pp. 203-218.
These consisted of one gold, six silver, and two copper
British coins, some of them of Cunobelin ; one hundred
and eighteen silver, billon, and brass Boman coins, ranging
from Claudius, a.d. 41, to Magnentius, a.d. 350-353;
twenty fibula3 of bronze, a silver ring, six bronze rings,
bronze keys, pins and nails, four intaglios (two of them
cornelian), glass beads of various colours, bronze buckles,
and other bronze instruments. This site is only eleven
English miles from Gloucester, wdiereas the Itinerary
gives the distance between Gleviim and Ariconium as
fifteen Boman miles ; but until we are certain of the
Boman method of measurinof, whether it was the same in
a flat country as in a hilly one, it is useless to attempt to
explain the discrepancy. Certain it is, that there is no
other site in the neighbourhood which will at all suit the
distances from the surrounding stations ; and upon these
grounds, together with the fact of this ruined town being
otherwise nameless, there can be little doubt of the
correctness of the conclusion which places Ariconium at
Bury-hill. The road from Boss to Gloucester, which is
probably on the site of a Boman predecessor, passes about
half a mile from it, whilst the modern road from Boss to
Newent actually passes through the station. In the
Ai'cJiceologia, vol. ix, Appendix, p. 3G8, a flgure of Diana,
said to have been found at this station, is described.

As the B;ev. J. Pointer was the first to point out (in
the extract I have quoted) the site of Bravinium, so I
think that when he says that there is '" another (camp)
at Tjcdbury" he points out the site of another station of
^^'hich there is now even less visible above ground than



ROMAN HEREFORDSHIRE. 3G1

at Leintwardine, though at the commencement of the
present century this was not the case. In Brayley and
Britton's Beauties of Emjland and Wales, voL vi, ]:>. 593,
we gather a Httle more information as to this camp. It
is there said that at a mile-and-a-half north-west from
Ledljiny there is a conical eminence called Wall Hills,
the lower part of Avhich is surrounded by large trees, and
the upper part is crowned Ijy a spacious camp, the area of
which is betAA'een thirty and forty acres. It was then
(1805) under cultivation, and had a single rampart and
ditch, then half levelled. There were three entrances,
one called the "King's Gate." In ploughing the area,
spear and arrowheads had been found, with brass coins,
antique horse shoes, and human bones. This camp has
now entirely disappeared. Baxter, in his Glossarium
Antiquitatum Britannicarum (1733) place.s Magna here,
but very erroneously. From the combined evidence of
Baxter and the Bev. J. Pointer I think that a station
rather than a temjDorary camp existed here, though it
might have been a British town originally, and sul)se-
quently made use of by the Romans, especially as thei'e
appear to be some traces of a smaller summer camp at
Haffield.

The Roman villas in the county, if we may judge by
by the number discovered, appear to have been singularly
few. The first one to which any notice was prominently
given was discovered at Bishopstone, al3out a mile and a
half westward from Kenchester, three and a half miles
fi'om Credenhill, and seven miles from Hereford, in the
year 1812, when digging a drain for the parsonage house.
In the Archceologia, vol. xxiii, p. 417, there is an account
of a tesselated pavement found in it, of which a drawing
was exhibited to the Society of Antiqiiaries, June 10,
by Thomas Bird, Esq., f.s.a.^ This gentleman says, — "It
appearing to me, that from its having been laid on a
common bed of clay without any foundation, it was in
great danger of being destroyed by the worms or by
persons treading upon it in wet weather, I have had a
plan taken upon a scale of one inch to a foot, for the

' From the sonuet written by the poet colours of the pavement wonKl appear to
Wordsworth mi these remains, which ho have been as briglit as when it was fii-st
saw at the time of their discoverv, the laid.



362 ROMAN HEREFORDSHIRE.

purpose of preserving so beautiful a remnant of antiquity,
which you will have the goodness to exhibit to the
Society. The principal injiiry which this ]\avement has
received is on the north side, Av^here a path appears to
have l^een made from the north-east corner to the western
end. Tlie centi'e part is entirely destroyed, which is
nuicli to be regretted ; but from a careful and attentive
consideration of the pattei'n, which was found to corres-
pond diagonally, my draughtsman has been enabled to
restore the whole pavement, with the exception of the
centre." (I have l^een recently informed that this plan
of the pavement has been published by A. Frieclel, 15,
Southampton-street, Strand, Ijut have not been able to
see a copy). The pavement, from information which I
have gathered upon the spot, was afterwards removed
into the cellar of the rectory, but has now disappeared.
There is little doubt but that the rectory stands upon a
portion of the villa. Mr. Bird, in the above-named article,
says that he had addressed some queries to the then
(1830) rector of Bishopstone, the Rev. A. J. Walker, and
gives a portion of his re])ly, from which I extract the
following : — " At distances of one and two hundred yards
round this house Ave have dug up on every side Pvoman
bricks, pottery, both coarse and fine, and many fragments
of funeral urns, and I am rather surprised that only three
coins have yet been found ; a regularly pitched causeway
or rather foundation has been found re]:»eatedly ; and in
June, 1821, in my kitchen garden, sonth-west of the
house, a foundation of sandstone (which seems also at
Kenchester to be the only stone the Bomans employed)
at the east end about three feet deep, and at the Avest
deepening to about five feet deep, Avas discovered. This
foundation is full three feet Avide, and increases toAvards
the angle, where it turns to five feet. I traced it to
fifty-five feet ; it Avas substantially laid, l)ut without
cement. T found also a tAventy-inch foundation Avail,
most strongly cemented, on the east side of the house.
Considerable quantities of black earth, near the places
Avhere fragments of urns have been found, are also dis-
covered. Bones have likewise been collected at about the
general depth of sixteen or eighteen inches, at Avhich
most of these Boman remains are met with at Bishop-



ROMAN HEREFORDSHIRE. 303

stone. .......

" T ouglit to remark that the fonndation above mentioned
of fifty-five feet, witli its right angle tui'ii, was parallel
as far as I l)elie\'e with the respective sides of the tesse-
lated pavement; there was no ap])earance of walls vonnd
the pavement."

Another Tloman villa (though not yet explored) exists
on the boundary of the parishes of Whitchurch and
Ganarew^, at the extreme southern part of the county,
and in the midst of the Roman iron mining district (of
which more immediately). A tesselated pavement has
been found and a number of coins, but no further
researches have been made, although there are consider-
able inequahties of surface. It is situated in a meadow
on the right hand of the road to Monmouth. (Lewis,
Top. Diet., edit. 1850, article 'Whitchurch;' Wright,
Wanderings of an Antiquary, p. 14). Coins have also
been discovered. Mr. James Davies, in the Arehceologia
Camhrensis, vol. ii, 2nd series, p. 50, says that in a
Roman camp at Walterstone vestiges of a Roman tesse-
lated pavement have been found. This probal)ly implies
the site of a villa, unless the camp is full of foundiitions,
in which case a considerable station may have been here.'

At p. 4G of the same vol., the same gentleman says in
a note — " In makino- excavations, durino- the construction
of the Gloucester and Hereford Canal, which crosses the
parish of Stretton Grandison, several Roman remaiiis were
found, consisting of several pieces of pottery, a small
weighing balance, resembling in form oiu' common steel-
yards, and other curiosities, which are now in the custody
of Mr. Philip Ballard, Widemarsh Street, Hereford, civil
engineer to the Canal Company." There was jirobahly
another villa at this place.

The only other villa known to me has been ([uito
recently discovered at Putley, about five miles west of
Ledbury. At a meeting of the Woolhope Club, at Here-
ford, March 9th, 1870 ; and at a meeting of the British

^ In The Arclitvologia. vol. vi, p. I?, from the camp at Waltei-stone. Does Mi-.

Mr. Strange says that a Roman tessehited Davies refer to the same pavement ? His

pavement had been discovered at a place remark that it was in the camp would seem

called Cored Gravel, which he says was to make the pavement he names totally

two miles north of Old Castle. This spot distinct from that named liy Mr. Strange,
is in Herefordshire, and Via re ly half a m i

VOL. XXXIV. 3 X



3G4 P.OMAN IIEREFOTIDSHTRE.

Archreological Association, March loth, 187G, {vide their
Journal, vol. xxxii, p. 250), Mr. T. Blashill exhibited several
Roman flue tiles, flange tiles, bricks having the marks of
sandals, woven cloths, cat's feet, and thumb marks, to-
gether with Koman pottery, &c., found in the foundation
of the north wall of the church at Putley. Subsequently
(Feb. 21st, 1877), the same gentleman reported the dis-
covery of a num])er of Roman wall tiles, roof tiles, pottery,
and other objects, found by John Riley, Esq., on his estate
at Putley ; thus confirming the previous anticipations of
a villa being on the spot. It is not, however, yet explored.
Another important feature in the R^oman antiquities
of the county is the immense beds of iron scoriae and
cinders^ ^vhich cover nearly the whole of the southern
part of tlie county, a great part of Monmouthshire and a
]iortion of drloucestershire. The parishes of St. Weonard's,
Hentland, Peterstow, Tretire, Bridstow, Weston-under-
Penyard, Llangarran, Walford, Goodrich, Welsh Bicknor,
Ganarew, Whitchurch, &c., abound with them. Hand
Ijlomories, with ore imperfectly smelted, have been foinid
on Peterstow Common. The beds of cinders are in some
places from twelve to tM'enty feet thick. Many Roman
coins and fragments of pottery are found in them. Round
Goodrich Castle the writer has traced them for many
miles, and the number of mines and smelting places in
this neighbourhood must have been immense. The hills
called the Great Doward and the Little Doward have
been considerably mined. In the first named, the entrance
to one of the Roman mines still remains in the hill side.
It is a large cave-like aperture, with galleries running
from it into the hill, in several directions, following of
course the vein of the iron. It is now called "King
Artlnu''s Hall." Ariconium would seem to have been
the capital of tins district, but there were doubtless other
small towns, which remain to be discovered. At Tretire.
about forty years since, Mr. Charles Baily, f.s.a., dis-
covered a Roman altar, which had been cut into the shape
of a font, and used as such in the parish church. It is over
twenty-nine inches in height, l)y sixteen inches in breadth,
ajid contains the remains of an inscription, as follows: —

DEO TRTVIT.
BFJJ.IOVS. DOX
AY IT AJIAM



nOMAN HEKEi'OiiDSHIllE. 365

( Wander i7iys of an Antlquarij, p. 17, and Proceedings,
London and Middlesex Archceologlcal Societi/ at Evening
Meetings, Session 1874, p. 147). It is to my mind very
doubtful whether tliis is not an early Christian inscrip-
tion, reading deo trivni, Ijut it is at tlie same time
scarcely probable tliat any Christian in that period would
erect an altar " to the Triune God." Dr. Mc Caul, in a
recent letter to me, expresses tlie same doubt, and indeed,
it is only just to say that Mr. Wright, when he hrst
published the inscription some twenty-five years ago,
made much the same remark. But so far modern anti-
quaries (including Professor Htlbner, of Berlin) have read
the inscrij)tion as Deo Tricii, Bellicus donavit a ram.
" To the god of the three ways, Bellicus gives the altar."
No doubt three ways or roads converged on the spot
where the altar was first set up.'

In most of the English counties the discovery of hoards
of Koman coins buried in the eartli (not necessarily near
a Roman station) is a very common occurrence, but in
Herefordshire there are few discoveries of this nature



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