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Roman Structures Spotted in Aerial Photographs of Wales

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Wales Roman FortMONMOUTHSHIRE, WALES—BBC News reports that analysis of aerial photographs taken in 2018 during a record drought has identified 200 ancient sites in Wales, including at least three Roman forts, a marching camp, a villa, and previously unidentified sections of road. Toby Driver of the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales said the sites offer a glimpse of Rome’s military might during the 20-year fight to conquer Celtic tribes in the region. “This is when Wales is still a very dangerous place to be for the troops, they are still under attack,” he said. One of the forts, located to the west of the Roman town of Caerwent and the Roman legionary fortress at Caerleon, had an inner and an outer defensive structure. The zone in between would have allowed Roman soldiers to attack the enemy with javelins. The Roman marching camp, the third to be identified in Wales, served as a temporary overnight stop with defensive positions and kitchens for soldiers traveling through hostile territory. Once the fighting was over, Driver said, the camps were dismantled. “It’s the scale of the control of Wales which is exciting to see,” he explained. For more on the monuments exposed by the summer 2018 drought, go to "The Marks of Time."

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