Roman ring found in farmer’s field in Essex 1,600 years after it was ‘lost’ by owner declared as ‘treasure’ by Coroner’s Court
- Experts believe the ring would have belonged to a Roman woman or young man
- The amethyst ring was found in a farmers field near Saffron Walden in Essex
- It has been declared as treasure by an inquest at Essex Coroner’s Court
The discovery of a 1,700-year-old gold ring believed to have once been a ‘prized possession’ of a Roman woman or young man has been made in Essex.
Found in a farmers field in Broxted, near Saffron Walden in Essex, the amethyst beauty has been declared as treasure by an inquest at Essex Coroner’s Court.
Sophie Flynn, finds liaison officer for the Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS) at Colchester Museum told The BBC: ‘The small band size suggests this was a ladies’ ring or that of a young man or woman.
Found in a farmers field in Broxted, near Saffron Walden in Essex, the gold set amethyst beauty has been declared as treasure by an inquest at Essex Coroner’s Court
‘Jewellery like this was commonly worn by Romano-British people, who both produced items locally and imported them from elsewhere in the [Roman] Empire.
WHAT IS TREASURE?
Under the Treasure Act 1996, finders of potential treasure in England, Wales and Northern Ireland are legally obliged to notify their local council’s finds liaison officer.
An inquest by the coroner then determines whether the finds constitute treasure.
If the find is declared treasure, the finder must offer it for sale to a museum at a price set by the British Museum’s Treasure Valuation Committee.
A reward is then offered to the finders and other relevant parties.
‘This particular example was lost over 1,500 years ago, and was only rediscovered in 2017, when it was found by a detectorist.’
Adding that it would have been a ‘prized possession’ to who ever owned it.
It is believed to date back to between AD300 and AD399 – towards the end of the Roman occupation.
The finding was made in November 2017 but has only recently been classified as legitimate treasure.
In 2016 a hoard of gold and silver Roman jewellery, known as the ‘Fenwick treasure’, was found 2,000 years after it stashed in the ground by a Roman woman in Colchester as the Iceni hoards advanced in 61AD.
Archaeologists unearthed the jewellery in 2014 under a department store in what is now Colchester High Street in Essex, 40 miles from the discovery of the ring.
It is believed to date back to between AD300 and AD399 and would have been a ‘prized possession’ to who ever owned it
Dr Philip Crummy, director of the Colchester Archaeological Trust described the find as ‘of national importance and one of the finest ever uncovered in Britain.’
‘We had almost finished our six-month study of the site when we came upon a small tangled ball of metal that turned out to be jewellery that had lain there undisturbed since 61AD,’ he said.
Boudicca was Queen of the Iceni people, a British tribe who lived in what is today Norfolk and parts of Suffolk and Cambridgeshire. Her name is an early for of the more commonly known name ‘Victoria’.
Archaeologists unearthed one of the finest collections of Roman ‘bling’ stashed in a ‘clutch bag’ under what is now Colchester High Street in 2016. The hoard (pictured) includes gold armlets, earrings and rings as well as silver chains, rings and coins, and was buried in bags and a wooden box under the floor of a house
The Boudiccan Revolt saw British tribes, under Boudicca of the Iceni, unsuccessfully try to defeat the Roman army.
The revolt resulted in Camulodunum, now Colchester, London, and Verulamium, now St Albans, being burnt to the ground while thousands of people on both sides lost their lives.
The Boudiccan sacking and burning of Colchester left in its wake a distinctive red and black layer of debris up to half a metre thick across the centre of much of modern-day Colchester.
WHEN DID THE ROMANS OCCUPY BRITAIN?
55BC – Julius Caesar crossed the channel with around 10,000 soldiers. They landed at a Pegwell Bay on the Isle of Thanet and were met by a force of Britons. Caesar was forced to withdraw.
54BC – Caesar crossed the channel again in his second attempt to conquer Britain. He came with with 27,000 infantry and cavalry and landed at Deal but were unopposed. They marched inland and after hard battles they defeated the Britons and key tribal leaders surrendered.
However, later that year, Caesar was forced to return to Gaul to deal with problems there and the Romans left.
54BC – 43BC – Although there were no Romans present in Britain during these years, their influence increased due to trade links.
43AD – A Roman force of 40,000 led by Aulus Plautius landed in Kent and took the south east. The emperor Claudius arrived in Colchester with reinforcements. Claudius appointed Plautius as Governor of Britain and returned to Rome.
In 43AD, a Roman force (artist’s impression) of 40,000 led by Aulus Plautius landed in Kent and took the south east. The emperor Claudius then arrived in Colchester with reinforcements
47AD – Londinium (London) was founded and Britain was declared part of the Roman empire. Networks of roads were built across the country.
50AD – Romans arrived in the southwest and made their mark in the form of a wooden fort on a hill near the river Exe. A town was created at the site of the fort decades later and names Isca.
When Romans let and Saxons ruled, all ex-Roman towns were called a ‘ceaster’. this was called ‘Exe ceaster’ and a merger of this eventually gave rise to Exeter.
75 – 77AD – Romans defeated the last resistant tribes, making all Britain Roman. Many Britons started adopting Roman customs and law.
122AD – Emperor Hadrian ordered that a wall be built between England and Scotland to keep Scottish tribes out.
312AD – Emperor Constantine made Christianity legal throughout the Roman empire.
228AD – The Romans were being attacked by barbarian tribes and soldiers stationed in the country started to be recalled to Rome.
410AD – All Romans were recalled to Rome and Emperor Honorious told Britons they no longer had a connection to Rome.
Source: History on the net