Saturday, 16 July 2011

Highworth Roman Pot

Dr Phil Parkes from Cardiff University analysed the staples on our Roman Pot from Highworth on 20 June 2011 at the Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre, Chippenham, where the pot is being conserved.

Analysis was carried out using a hand-held X-ray fluorescence analyzer with the aim of identifying the metal alloy used to make the staples. The spectra from the analyses showed that the staples consist of lead. A small amount of iron was also visible due to dirt on the surface of the staples.

Dr Phil Parkes says, 'The use of lead staples to repair vessels is well recorded in Roman Britain (Fulford and timby, 2001). Although more commonly associated with Samian Ware, it has occasionally been used with coarseware, where sherds can be found with a hole drilled near to a break edge for the staple repair.

The results of the analysis indicated that the vessel was repaired in Roman times.