What's your artifact doing in Boss Kean's ditch?
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Post by Witness » Mon Aug 06, 2018 3:14 am

Early Roman 'horseshoes' dug up from Vindolanda fort ditch

Barbara Birley, curator at Vindolanda, near Hexham, in Northumberland, said it was "incredibly rare" to find a full set of four iron hipposandals.

She said the hoof protectors were so well preserved that their tread to stop horses slipping was clearly visible.

The haul was found by a volunteer - one of 250 who carry out digs at the fort every year.

Because the Romans were in Britain for between 400 and 500 years, Ms Birley said, teams could dig at the site for the next 150 years and still unearth Roman treasures.

"Basically, over the years, nine forts have been built on this site - every time new Roman arrivals came, they covered over the remains from the last fort with clay and turf to make solid foundations for their fort," Ms Birley explained.

"This means things were well preserved. One of the hipposandals has a hairline fracture so the set may have been thrown in the ditch because one was damaged."

From an article I read a long time ago, Roman soldiers along Hadrian's wall had straw in their rooms and never bothered cleaning up but just spread a new layer of clay. An archaeologist's dream, as even organic materials were then preserved. So you can find anything: discarded sandals, bones (from their food), human parasites, lost coins & tools, &c.
The article also estimated that the quality of their diet was equivalent to XIXth c. England.

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Re: Hipposandals

Post by Abdul Alhazred » Mon Aug 06, 2018 9:03 am

I wonder when "modern" horseshoes were invented?

Middle ages perhaps? Or we got them from the Mongols?
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Re: Hipposandals

Post by sparks » Mon Aug 06, 2018 4:26 pm

You can lead them to knowledge, but you can't make them think.