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Early Roman Military Base Discovered in England

Thursday, February 13, 2020

AYLESHAM, ENGLAND—Kent Online reports that contract archaeologists have unearthed two ancient skeletons and traces of a Roman settlement at a building site on high ground overlooking Canterbury and the Roman ports of Richborough and Dover in southeast England. The human remains, which are being examined at the University of Kent, are thought to date to the Bronze or Iron Age. Paul Wilkinson of Swale and Thames Archaeology said artifacts from the site indicate the Romans also lived there and used the site as a military supply depot in the years immediately following the invasion of Britain. “Not all of them would have been fighting men but specialists in a range of support roles,” Wilkinson said of the Romans who lived at the site. The soldiers and support staff probably concentrated on building infrastructure, he explained. Three kilns for firing pottery made from local clay, pottery imported from what is now Germany, and glass items imported from what is now France have also been found. To read about the Roman military presence along Hadrian's Wall, go to "The Wall at the End of the Empire."

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