Aspects of Kentish Local History

Finds from the excavation of Eccles Roman Villa, Kent

First-century pottery manufacture at Eccles, Kent by Alec Detsicas
Roman Pottery Studies in Britain and Beyond. BAR S30 Oxford, 19-36

19. with a well formed everted rim, has exceptionally deep brown-red colour-coating, which may be nearer to the intended finished colouring of these cups and bowls rather than the lighter red colour of their vast majority.

20. badly distorted, is similar in shape to no. 12, but with a less pronounced rim; red colour-coating.
Nos. 21-33 are the series of bases, from cups and bowls, some roughcast with fine or coarse sand or clay (no. 32 is rough-cast internally as well); no. 33 has no surviving colour-coating, but its fabric suggests that it may be the base for no. 19, above.

iv. Flagons (Figs. 3.2-3.3)
Sherds belonging to flagons and jugs were by far the largest group in the waste material from the kiln, naturally enough in view of the size of the vessels and the sturdiness of their necks and bases; even so, the quantity of the wasters involved suggests that this kiln may have specialised in the production of such vessels. So far, only one small flagon (no. 64) has been completely reconstructed because it was found practically complete, apart from being broken. Bases, which are not illustrated, show little variation, except in size.
   The fabric of these pots shows little variation, too; it is usually hard and non-porous and consists of well fired, homogeneous clay, tempered with varying admixture of sand - occasionally, flint particles also show through the fabric, but these are rather impurities in the clay than intended for tempering. The colour variations are the result of firing and grade from white and off-white to cream, buff, pink and light red; no certain evidence for the use of slip has so far been found.
   The forms derive, by and large, from the well known Hofheim type of flagon, though the rim-profiles show great variety from the virtually straight, everted rim of no. 34 to the more curved and hooked profiles; though it is not doubted that variations are bound to occur in manufacture, it is clear nevertheless that some at least of these variations were intentional. There are also several fragments from disc rim flagons, others with pinched, frilled or screw necks. Nos.34-71 illustrate the range of variations, nos. 70 and 71 being intermediate between flagons and jugs.

Picture Flagon neck in hard, creamy, fairly sandy fabric. This is nearest to the Hofheim model, with a very slightly curved profile which is also very slightly undercut.

Picture The fabric of this neck is rather buff than cream, owing to over-firing indicated by much pitting of the outer surface; its rim-profile is much more curved than the previous neck.

Picture A small neck, somewhat distorted, in creamy fabric and buff core; the rim is undercut and the inside of the lip recessed.

Picture Cream fabric, buff core, badly pitted, its handle distorted. The rim is slightly undercut, and this flagon looks like a smaller version of no. 33, above.

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