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Archaeology Magazine

A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

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Roman Basin Recovered From Germanic Grave in Holland

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Netherlands Roman basinRIJNSBURG, NETHERLANDS—Dutch News reports that the cremated remains of three people who may have been members of a Germanic tribe, combs thought to have been made in what is now northern Germany, and a rare bronze wash basin decorated with an eagle’s head were discovered in a fourth-century A.D. grave in the western Netherlands. The basin, which was found in fragments and has been reconstructed, is thought to have been made in a Roman workshop in Italy for a high-ranking military officer stationed near the empire’s northern border some 50 years before it was placed in the grave. Zuid-Holland provincial archaeologist René Proos suggested the Roman officer may have used the basin to buy the loyalty of a Germanic tribal chief. The basin and other recent finds in the region indicate the Roman army may have occupied the Netherlands longer than previously thought. To read about evidence of a battle between the Romans and Germanic tribes uncovered in the Netherlands, go to “Caesar’s Diplomatic Breakdown.”

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