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Chester Amphitheatre Project Blog


Welcome to the official Blog of the Chester Amphitheatre Project.

Tuesday, October 30

Thoughts from Grosvenor Park ...

Dear Bloggers,

As promised, the thoughts and ideas generated from this years excavation in the Grosvenor Park, Chester, are now available to download as a PDF (Portable Document Format). All you have to do is:

Go to the home page of the Chester Amphitheatre Project web site where you will see in 'Latest News' a link to the 'Grosvenor Park Website'. Click on this link and then click on 'About the Park', scroll down a little then click on 'Archaeology' then scroll down to the bottom of the page where you will see a link to the 'Archaeological Report for Grosvenor Park'.

Happy reading.

posted by Cheryl Quinn at 11:34


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Monday, July 23

Grosvenor Park: Latest Discovery: Roman Bronze Spoon

Another interesting find is part of a bronze spoon, a type that was used in the later Roman period. It has a coating of tin or a tin alloy, possibly to give the appearance of solid silver! Only a small part of the handle survives, which is joined to the bowl with a downward curving arm set at an angle to it, and this continues on to the back of the bowl of the spoon. The bowl itself is 64 mm in length. Although found with the spoon, we are not sure if the two separate pieces of bronze are part of it.

Trench II

posted by Cheryl Quinn at 11:17


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Wednesday, July 18

Chester Amphitheatre: National Archaeology Week 2007 ...

July saw the return of gladiators and soldiers to Chester's Roman Amphitheatre. As part of National Archaeology Week Chester City Council's Archaeological Service hosted a fun packed event with a variety of entertaining and educational attractions.

The stars of the day were the Deva Victrix Leg XX v.v re-enactment group who entertained the crowds with bouts of fierce gladiatorial combat and displays of military prowess ...

and this year, for the first time, the Roman Army brought their Egyptian dancing girls!

copyright: P.A. Winker

There was the opportunity to see some of the fascinating finds from not only the Amphitheatre but also from this seasons excavation in the Grosvenor Park!

Try your hand at uncovering the past with the 'Jigsaw Dig' ...

Watch a fascinating flint knapping demonstration ...

and have your own artefacts identified by the Portable Antiquities Officer, seen here with Christine Russell, MP for Chester.

More images from National Archaeology Day will be online soon, so do watch this space.

posted by Cheryl Quinn at 12:19


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Wednesday, July 11

Grosvenor Park: Latest Discovery: Roman Ceramic Figurine

Part of a ceramic figurine. Unfortunately, all that we have is the hollow-domed plinth and a pair of feet! Despite this we can identify it as being from a figurine of Venus, the goddess of love and beauty. A garment or piece of drapery, which is held in her left hand, can be seen close to the left leg.

This type of figurine, made from white clay, was produced in Central Gaul and Cologne in the first and second centuries AD. They were presented to the gods at temples and household shrines and sometimes placed in graves.

posted by Cheryl Quinn at 10:21


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Monday, July 2

Grosvenor Park: Latest Discovery: A Roman brooch ...

A Roman brooch in particularly good condition. It is a type that was made in Britain from the late first century to the middle of the second century, but rarely found in northern Britain. It would have been decorated with two strips of enamel (glass which is fused to the metal), and a small amount of orange enamel is still visible. Unfortunately the pin used to fasten the brooch is missing; so too is part of the chain loop, suggesting that this brooch was one of a pair, linked by a chain.

posted by Cheryl Quinn at 15:04


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Friday, June 29

Grosvenor Park: Latest Discovery: A 16th-century Book Clasp

Part of a copper-alloy book clasp with engraved ring and dot decoration; probably 16th century. The clasp would have been used to decorate and also secure a leather bound book. It may have come from a church building but a wealthy household such as that of the Cholmondeley's would also have had books.

Trench I

posted by Cheryl Quinn at 11:14


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Grosvenor Park: Latest Discovery: 16th-17th-century Glass & Cames

The remains of a 16th or early 17th century window. Small diamond shaped panes of clear glass are held together by a network of lead strips known as cames to create a large window.

Trench I

posted by Cheryl Quinn at 11:11


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Grosvenor Park: Latest Discovery: Decorated Plaster

This piece of plaster decorated with a butterfly is one of several pieces of decorated plaster work found in Trench I. The other pieces show the remains of a strapwork design and are probably from a decorated plaster ceiling dating to the first half of the 17th century or possibly the late 16th century. The pieces are all in very good condition; it is rare to find plaster in such condition on an archaeological excavation. The pieces give us some clue as to how the interior of Cholmondeley's earlier house was decorated.

Trench I

posted by Cheryl Quinn at 11:07


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Grosvenor Park: Latest Discovery: A Medieval Floor Tile

Part of a medieval floor tile with a line impressed design showing a griffin. The edge of a wing is just visible on the broken edge of the piece. It was made in the 14th or 15th century. It may have been used in St John's church or a building belonging to the church.

Trench I

posted by Cheryl Quinn at 11:05


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Grosvenor Park: Latest Discovery: A 17th century Salt-glazed Stoneware Jug

Fragment from a 17th century salt-glazed stoneware jug with a floral medallion on the front. This sort of jug often has a bearded face on the neck and was made in Frechen in the Rhineland area of modern Germany. They were exported in large numbers to Britain and the rest of Europe.

Trench I

posted by Cheryl Quinn at 11:01


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Wednesday, June 27

Grosvenor Park: Latest Discovery: A Roman Miniature Axe

This model axe is a miniature reproduction of a common, everyday object, which served no useful function of its own. Model objects are well-known in Roman Britain and miniature axes first appear in the Iron Age. It may have been a simple good-luck symbol, as miniature axes were also worn as amulets. However, because of its weight, this particular example is unlikely to have been used in this way and may originally have been placed in a grave or a shrine as a votive offering.

The axe is quite crudely made, being roughly wedge-shaped with a narrow, rounded cutting edge. A socket for attachment extends through the head.

Tr III (38), SF 209

posted by Cheryl Quinn at 12:37


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