Finding Common Ground

Eboracum to Eoforwic

An examination of the animal bone from Queen’s Hotel, York offered us the chance to understand the transition from the late Roman to early medieval periods. Working with Dr David Petts from Durham University, we used a combination of new carbon-14 dates, existing artefact dating and Bayesian Statistics to relook at the 4th/5th century chronologies. This has the potential to work as a new methodology for looking at these kind of late/transitional sequences, as well as better understanding the particular processes going on in York at the end of the Roman period.

The project has allowed us to relook at the excavation archive from the results of York Archaeological Trust’s investigations in this area, in particular the major excavations at 5 Rougier Street, the General Accident site at Tanner Row, Queen’s Hotel on Micklegate and Wellington Row. The new report, produced through this project, gives an overview of the walled area to the south-west of the river Ouse during the Roman and Anglian periods (c. AD 71-875). This area was the site of the Roman civilian settlement in York, which was sufficiently important by the early third century to have been made the capital of the province of Britannia Inferior, and to have attained the rank of colonia (the highest rank of Roman town). Quite what happened to the colonia in the immediate post-Roman period is uncertain, many sites were covered by an accumulation of soil, known as dark-earth, but the presence of a small number of Anglian structures, and of stray finds of artefacts suggests that there was some activity, though this may have been on a limited scale.

Project Report

Exploring the end of Roman York: Queen’s Hotel