The Roundhouses

In a sheltered spot, on north facing sloping ground, we discovered part of a late prehistoric and possibly Romano-British settlement.

On the lower slopes are ring-groove round houses of Later Prehistoric date and below these, where the ground begins to level out, are clay-walled round houses, paddocks and boundaries of the Iron Age and Romano-British period.

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There are no dateable artefacts from the pre-Roman period because Wales was largely aceramic during this time, but a small amount of pottery of the Roman period, including sherds of black-burnished kitchen ware and more stylish Samian pottery show activity in these later phases. Roman pottery was also recorded in the upper fill of the northern henge ditch in the earlier excavations.

In the drain of one house was found a small bronze Roman seal box complete with traces of the wax seal inside. Seal boxes were used to secure and authenticate important documents. It is unlikely that official documents were delivered to this small native settlement, so it is likely that this pretty trinket was acquired from elsewhere, perhaps from a military presence.

Sherds of glass and a few glass beads were also found. The beads may be connected with an isolated find made over 300m north-east of the settlement, where 235 blue glass beads and 19 red reeded beads were found in a small hollow with no other associated features. The beads are probably of Roman date and are rather rough and unfinished.

Click here to see a selection of Roman artefacts from the site

Click here to see a plan of the roundhouses