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Time

To appreciate the Wall and the people who lived in its shadow, we should place them in time. The diagram below offers a simple timeline of major events in the …

The couple from Carlisle

In this step a tombstone from Gallows Hill, Carlisle, at the western end of the Wall, provides a glimpse of a frontier couple. They stand to remind us of the …

The fort wall: a great divide?

Over several years of intense excavations at Vindolanda, Dr Andrew Birley has examined the distribution of finds both within the Severan period fort (the fort used in the early third …

Seeing beneath the soil

There is much more to archaeology than just digging! We have already seen some of the methods archaeologists use to interpret sites without excavation – for example, we looked at …

Cities of the dead: studying the cemeteries

Surprisingly, we know remarkably little about where the people of the frontier communities were buried. We have no cemeteries associated with the indigenous or native settlements, and we have only …

Milking Gap and rural sites

Hadrian’s Wall was situated within a very rural landscape, and the vast majority of people living in the frontier zone lived on rural settlements and were engaged in farming. But …

Sources for late Roman military dress

So how do we know what soldiers looked like? There are a number of sources that provide evidence for the appearance of late Roman soldiers. The arms and armour discovered …

Dress and the army of conquest

The great Roman writer Vergil begins his epic tale, the Aeneid, with the words Arma virumque cano, ‘I sing of arms and the man’. Arms, armour, men and identity were …

Belts, brooches and late Roman soldiers

Using original artefacts and models Dr Rob Collins presents items of dress worn by soldiers of the late Roman army in Britain. These finds from Hadrian’s Wall help us to …