(C) Structures Outside the Walls.
(a) North of the River.
Aldersgate Street. A wall was found in 1887
on the N. side of St. Botolph's churchyard, the
substructure of which was thought to be Roman
[Arch., XXX, 522; Soc. Ant. MS. Min. XXXVIII,
Bishopsgate Street (Without). A City Sewers
Plan of 1852 (III, 12) has the following note of
discoveries in Montague Court:—"While excavating for a new sewer 30 ft. from the frontage of
Bishopsgate Street we met with an old wall 9 ft.
from the surface to the top of the wall; it was
3 ft. thick, built with Kentish rag and mortar with
two courses of flat tiles every foot in height; it
ran in a parallel line with Bishopsgate Street.
Twenty feet farther up the court we met with another
wall parallel with the last and built in the same
manner, 8 ft. to the top of the same and 3 ft. thick."
Fig. 58. Pile-structure, Blomfield Street.
From Archæological Journal LX, by permission.
Blomfield Street. In 1901, considerable
remains of pile-structures (Plate 53 and Figs.
58–61, were discovered on the W. side of the street
and on the W. side of the bed of the Walbrook.
The structures consisted of piles and cross-beams
and planking; some of the beams were grooved
and tenoned. The space between the boarding
was apparently rubbish brought from elsewhere to
form a platform and perhaps added to during the
occupation. The evidence from all these structures
was consistent and showed that 18 in. of sand and
silt had been deposited on the original gravel
surface of the river-bed before their erection. The
objects found on the site afforded direct evidence
of Roman date, none of the pottery figured being
assignable to a date later than A.D. 130. The
pottery was found in, and mostly at the top of,
the filling forming the platforms. The discoveries
were fully reported on by F. W. Reader [Arch.
Journ., LX, 137–204 and 313–335].
Fig. 59. Pile structures, Blomfield Street. From Arch. Journ., LX.
In 1925, when the site of Nos. 13 and 14 on
the E. side of Blomfield Street was excavated,
Mr. Q. Waddington observed a number of piles,
perhaps forming part of the eastern embankment
of the stream. Some lst-century pottery was also
Holborn. A fragment of geometric pavement
in black, red, and white was found in the 17th
century near St. Andrew's Church. It was taken
up, given to the Royal Society, and long preserved
in the Museum at Gresham College [N. Grew,
Museum Regalis Societatis (1681), 380].
Hyde Park. The original Ossulston Stone, said
to have been a Roman "geometric stone," formerly
stood near the N.E. corner of the Park on the S.
side of Oxford Street; it is marked on Rocque's
map as "milestone." The stone was subsequently
dug up and placed against the Marble Arch, but
has now disappeared [Lond. and Midd. Arch. Soc.
Trans., IV, 62].
Long Lane (Smithfield). Mr. T. Fisher records
the discovery, before 1805, of a pavement in this
locality, but no further particulars are given [Gent.
Mag., 1807, I, 415–7].
Old Bond Street. In March, 1894, a stone
culvert with joints of brick, set in cement, was
found, running southwards [Antiq., XXIX, 244].
St. Martin in the Fields. During the excavations for the building of this church, 1722, "a
Roman brick arch was found with several ducts,
14 ft. underground, and Sir Hans Sloane had a
bell-shaped glass vase that was found in a stone
coffin among ashes in digging the foundations of
the portico." Stukeley described it as "an arch built
of Roman brick and at the bottom laid with a
most strong cement. . . . There was a square duct
in each wall its whole length, of 9 in. breadth;
there were several of these side by side." [Gough,
Camden, II, 17, 93; Brayley, Beauties of Engl, and
Wales, X, Pt. I, 91; Allen. Hist. of London, I, 25;
Soc. Antiq. MS. Min. I, 151, 170; Arch. Rev., I, 356].
Strand Lane, E. side. About 80 yards S. of the
Strand, is a plunge-bath of brick with a round N.
end, 15½ ft. by 6¾ ft. This bath was formerly lined
with modern marble slabs, and has only recently
been stripped; the actual walls and floor, where
they can be tested, are built of red bricks, 9 in. by
4¾ in. by 1¾ in. The bath is fed by a spring which
now enters at the S.E. corner, and there are remains
of the former feed-pipe or overflow in the middle
of the S. end. The date of the bath is at present
uncertain; the bricks are unlike any Roman bricks
yet discovered in this country, but, on the other
hand, they do not resemble in form or texture the
normal bricks of the 17th century, which seems to
be the alternative date.
Fig. 60. Pile-structure, Blomfield Street.
From Arch. Journ. LX.
Fig. 61. Pile-structures, Blomfield Street.
Sections of coarse pottery-rims found.
From Arch. Journ. LX.
Water Street. A note on a City Sewers Plan
in 1849 reads: "In this spot (the N. part of Water
Street extending into Tudor Street) we met with
a row of oak piles 3 ft. apart, with oak planking
nailed on the front of them, 12 in. wide and 1½ in.
thick. The piles were 12 in. square and 10 ft. from
the surface to the top of do—50 ft. in length."
There was apparently no evidence of the date of this
Westminster Abbey Precincts. In digging
the foundations of new Canons' houses in the
Abbey garden in 1883, remains of a Roman
"dwelling" were found at a depth of 14 ft.; they
consisted of slabs of concrete flooring, roof-tiles and
other rubbish. Similar remains to those last
described are said to have been discovered also in
the cloister [Arch. Journ.. XLII. 274]. In 1878,
when digging the grave of Sir Gilbert Scott, Roman
building material was found under the nave of the
Abbey church, said to have been remains of the
pilae of a hypocaust. A Roman sarcophagus of
Oxfordshire oolite was found in 1869 on the N. side
of the Abbey church; it is now in the chapter-house vestibule. It measures 6 ft. 10 in. by 2 ft. 4 in.
by 1 ft. 10 in. (see p. 173).
(b) South of the River. (See Plan B. p. 150).
Castle Street, Southwark. Brock's map
marks "hypocaust flues marked Px Tx" between
this street and Barclay and Perkins' Brewery. The
find is probably identical with one recorded by
Taylor as on the latter site [Annals of St. Mary
Overy, 10; see Park Street].
Deverell Street, Kent Road. A Roman
"hypocaust or flue" was found about 1825 near
the Dissenters' burial-ground [Gent. Mag., 1825,
Guildford Street, Southwark. Numerous
piles were found here about 1867 [Journ. Brit.
Arch. Assoc., XXIII, 87].
High Street, Southwark. In making the
Southwark approach to New London Bridge about
1830, a Roman pavement of coarse tesserae was
found in the middle of Borough High Street [Arch.,
In 1840, on the W. side about 100 yards N. of St.
George's Church (Plan B 1) were found flue and
roof-tiles, Gaulish and other pottery, beads, fragments of glass bottles, a bell, coins of Tiberius,
Faustina I, Severus and Tetricus, and frescopaintings of a superior kind. Some of the lastnamed had foliage and flowers in green, yellow,
and white on a dark ground, others plain borders
of red, green and white [Arch., XXIX, 149].
At King's Head Yard (Plan B 3), in 1879–80, were
found a fragment of tessellated pavement, a coin of
Domitian, and pottery [Journ. Brit. Arch. Assoc.,
XXXVI, 122, 234]. Further excavations on the
same site in 1881 yielded more results: flue and
roof-tiles, fragments of stamped amphoræ, Gaulish
pottery and other varieties, a key, and coins of
Vespasian and Domitian. A coin of Justinus
(A.D. 537) was also reported. These remains
appear to betoken the presence of an inhabited
building [Ibid., XXXVII, 211, 427].
Fig. 62. Pavement under Borough High Street.
From Arch., LXIII.
In 1908, in cutting for a drain between No. 52
and the sewer (Plan B 2) a pavement (Fig. 62) of
roughly shaped rag-stones was found at a depth of
21 ft. from the surface. The pavement was
supported on piles driven into the sand, and above
it were found fragments of Roman pottery, some
of which was of late 1st and early 2nd-century date
[Arch., LXIII, 323, with site-plan and section;
Trans. Croyd. N. H. and Sc. Soc., 1911, 44].
Mint Street, Southwark. Finds here included,
in 1887, two clay water-pipes [Journ. Brit. Arch.
Assoc., XLIII, 374].
Mitre Street, Southwark. A clay water-pipe
from this street is in the Guildhall Museum [Cat.,
Park Street, Southwark (Plan B 11). In
1658, Dugdale records the discovery of "a Roman
pavement made of bricks not above an inch and a
half square, and adjoining to it a more curious
piece of the like small bricks, in length about 10 ft.
and in breadth 5 ft., wrought in various colours;
and in the midst thereof, betwixt certain borders
in the fashion of wreathed columns, the form of a
serpent very lively expressed in that kind of
Mosaic work" [Dugdale, History of Imbanking and
Drayning, 65; hence Gwilt in Gent. Mag., 1815, I,
225]. In 1806, Taylor records the find of a flue-tile
inscribed Px Tx [Annals of St. Mary Overy, p. 10,
pl. 1, fig. 3]. Timber, nails and iron-work were
found in December, 1868, at the corner of Clink
street (Plan B10) from "an ancient wooden structure
formed of stout piles set about two feet apart and
supporting beams and joists overlaid with planking
rabbeted and fastened again by broad-headed
four-sided nails of iron," supposed to be a Roman
landing-place [Journ. Brit. Assoc., XXV, 79].
St. George's Fields, Southwark. "In these
fields, commonly called St. George's, many Roman
coins, tessellated work, bricks and rubble have
been found from time to time, also a large urn,
full of bones" [T. Gale, Antonini Iter, 1709, 65].
"Tessellated pavements and urns" are said to
have been found in St. George's Fields [Gent. Mag.,
1825, I, 148].
St. Saviour, Southwark. Brock's map marks
on the S. side of the church (Plan B 8) a mosaic
pavement found 18 July, 1820; also "a footpath
of red Roman." Lindsay says it was in the court
in front of St. Saviour's School [Etym. of Southwark,
3rd Ed., 5]. In 1825, Gwilt found fragments of a
pavement and a quantity of Roman bricks worked
into the walls [Gent. Mag., 1825, II, 633; Lindsay,
Etym. of Southwark, 6; Taylor, Annals of St.
Mary Overy, 15]. In 1831 stone foundations were
found under the choir of the church and running
N.E. and S.W. [Arch. XXIV, 198]. In 1833,
part of a tessellated pavement was found in the
churchyard [Gent. Mag., 1833, I, 255].
In 1839, in digging for foundations of warehouses
round the church, traces of walls were found together
with tesserae, frescoes, etc. Partly on the site of
St. Saviour's Grammar School (S. of the church,
Plan B 9), and partly under the adjoining house
a tessellated pavement of a handsome pattern
was found and in the churchyard nearly opposite
was a narrow pavement of red tesserae running
from N.E. to S.W. [Arch., XXIX, 148; Gent.
Mag., 1840, I, 192].
About 1910 a portion of red tessellated pavement
was found at the S.E. corner of the churchyard
(Plan B 7) when digging a trench for a new railing.
The pavement was 9½ ft. below the surface and
rested on 16 in. of builders' rubbish. It probably
formed part of the same pavement as that discovered
in 1833 [Arch., LXIII, 325, with section].
St. Thomas Watering (Old Kent Road). A
Janus-head in marble (figured in Allen's History
of London, I, 36) was dug up about 1690, near this
point, together with large flat bricks and other
Roman remains [Woodward's Letter to Hearne].
According to Defoe it was found in connection with
remains of a building and a second head was also
found and left in quicksand [D. Defoe, Tour
through Britain, I, 234].
St. Thomas's Hospital, Southwark, site of. In
1840, on pulling down the S. wing of the outer or
western quadrangle of St. Thomas's Hospital (Plan
B 6) "a Roman pavement of the common red
tesserae, surrounded by walls (Plate 46) of flint
and rubble with courses of Roman tiles has been
discovered at a depth of 20 ft. from the level of the
High Street. The pavement measured about 20 ft.
by 12 ft.; the tesserae were embedded in concrete
about 6 in. thick under which was a layer of chips
of stone. On removing the foundations of the walls
they were found to rest on piles, the soil being sand
.... we were informed that on the N. side there
were the jambs of a doorway and on the W. side a
continuation of the buildings." Roach Smith
records that on the floor there were found several
coins of the Constantine family [Gent. Mag., 1840,
I, 191–2; Arch., XXIX, 148 with plan, etc., pl. 18].
St. Thomas's Street, Southwark. A tessellated
pavement was found at the corner of High Street
(Plan B 5), in 1819, at a depth of 10 ft. [Brock's
Southwark Street. A tessellated pavement
was discovered in 1820 on the site of Cure's College
(Plan B 12) i.e. between Park Street and Southwark
Street [Surrey Arch. Colls., XXVIII, 141].
In excavating for the formation of Southwark
Street (Plan B 13) in 1862 numerous remains came
to light, including fragments of tessellated pavements and wall-paintings at a depth of from 10 to
26 ft. [Lond. and Midd. Arch. Soc. Trans., II,
Proceedings, 84]. In 1866, on the S. side of the
street between Southwark Square and Worcester
Street (Plan B 14), "in a space of about 100 ft.
by 40 ft., 16 pits had been sunk, each disclosing
Roman pottery above a number of piles and puddled
clay." The piles were 7 to 11 ft. in length, the
heads about 12 ft. below the street-level. On the
opposite side of the street (Plan B 15), 135 ft. from
the piling, a pavement of red tesserae and remains
of Roman pottery were found [Journ. Brit. Arch.
Assoc., XXII, 445 ff.; XXIII, 87; Lond. and
Midd. Arch. Soc. Trans., III, 213, n.].
Stoney Street, Southwark. Where this street
now joins High Street (Plan B 4), Brock's map
marks the discovery of red stucco.
(c) Structures in outlying parts of the County of
Blackheath. Part of a rectangular earthwork
is marked on the O.S. 25 inch London cv. not far
S. of Greenwich Park, and on Blackheath near
Hollyhedge House. Excavations were made in it
in 1906 when Roman tiles and coarse pottery were
found in the mound and ditch and within the
enclosure but not outside its boundaries. [Information given by Mr. Herbert Jones to Prof.
Haverfield, and now preserved among the Vict.
Co. Hist. MS. materials for Kent to which access
was kindly given by Mr. William Page, the Editor.]
Professor Haverfield suggested that the site may
have been a temple enclosure or villa garden, but
that in its present shape it is too imperfect to be
taken into account as a determinant feature. No
doubt it is to be connected with the structure found
in Greenwich Park.
Charlton. The earthwork at Charlton was
situated on the edge of the river-marsh about
½ mile N.E. of Charlton church. It was a fort of
the contour class and occupied the end of a low
spur rising to rather above the 100 ft. contour.
Its form, not now ascertainable with certainty, was
probably an irregular pentagon with rounded
angles, covering with its defences an area of perhaps
17½ acres. The greater part of the earthwork was
destroyed in the 18th and early 19th century in
digging for sand, but a considerable stretch of the
W. side together with the southern angle survived
until 1870, when it was surveyed by Sir Flinders
Petrie [Arch. Cant., XIII]. Between that date and
1915 the greater part of the surviving banks and
ditches had been destroyed. In the latter year
excavations were undertaken by Mr. Elliston
Erwood to determine the date and character of the
earthwork. The defences on the W. side consisted
of two banks and inner and medial ditches; the
inner ditch was formed by scarping the edge of the
plateau. The small surviving portion of the
enclosed area contained a number of habitationfloors indicating the former existence of hutments
commonly of roughly circular form. The finds on
the site consisted of flint-flakes, furnace-bars,
querns, loom-weights, fibulae, pottery and two coins
of Claudius. All the pottery and fibulae appeared
to date between A.D. 60 and 250, with the exception
of one fragment of a bronze-age urn. The only
masonry structure was found by workmen in 1906,
and described by them as a round building of about
20 sq. ft. area, and with walls of flint, etc., standing
2½ ft. high.
The settlement would appear to have been one
inhabited by Romano-British natives established
within an earthwork of uncertain date, but probably
not greatly, if at all, anterior to the settlement
[Journ. Brit. Arch. Assoc., N.S., XXII, 125].
A small subsequent excavation in 1923, and the
continued destruction of the remains of the earthwork provided evidence extending the date of the
occupation to the end of the 3rd and possibly into
the 4th century. Mr. Erwood considers that this
settlement is the Noviomagus of the Antonine
Iter II [Journ. Brit. Arch. Assoc., N.S., XXIX,
Greenwich. In 1902, the remains of a Roman
building were partially excavated in the N. of
Greenwich Park, about 100 yds. from its E. wall
and half way between Vanbrugh and Maze Hill
gates, at the point where the high ground of the
main area of the Park reaches its northern limit.
The plan of the building (which may or may not
have been a shrine) was not ascertained; only a
small piece of rag-stone walling and three patches
of flooring—two of opus signinum and one, 3 ft.
higher than the others, of coarse red tesserae—
were found, scattered over an area about 15 by
50 ft. Much burnt matter, tiles, hypocaust bricks,
painted wall-plaster, cubes from a mosaic, a piece
of green porphyry, worked and moulded blocks of
oolite, parts of drums of three small columns, and
some window-glass were also unearthed. The small
finds were numerous, amongst them about 300
Roman coins ranging from Claudius to Honorius
and including perhaps 200 of "Constantinian
copper." A legionary denarius of Mark Antony
(Leg. XIV) was dug up about 100 yds. N.E. of the
The most important relics, however, were:—
(i) Part of a figure (Plate 51) in oolite about two-thirds life-size, showing a right arm with elbow
bent and turned back to the body; on the
forearm is an armlet, and drapery falls over the
shoulder to the hand.
(ii) Sandstone fragment, 6½ in. by 8 in., bearing
the edges of the two first lines of an inscription in
letters 1¾ in. tall.
C V L A P or R
I A T V S
In the first line Aesculapius has been conjectured.
[Eph. Ep., IX, 992]. In the British Museum.
(iii) White marble fragment, 6 in. high by
4½ in. wide, with letters 7/8 in. high, from the left
side of an inscription.
S I or V
Possibly Numinibus Augusti, but conjecture is useless [Eph. Ep., IX, 993]. In the British Museum.
(iv) White marble, bearing the tops of three
letters which might be A S S.
(v–vii) Three other fragments bearing parts of
letters [H. Jones, Home Counties Mag., V, 49, 213
(plan); A. D. Webster, Greenwich Park (Greenwich,
1902), 67–100, figs., not agreeing exactly in detail;
Daily Graphic, 14 June, 1902. Most of the objects
found are preserved in the Greenwich Public
Library, and part of the tessellated pavement
remains uncovered in situ.]
There is a doubtful record of the discovery of a
piece of tessellated pavement in the grounds of
Trinity Hospital [Trans. Greenwich Ant. Soc., I,
Shooter's Hill. In 1923, excavations for a
hospital on the S. side of the main road and on the
top of the hill, revealed the remains of a roughly
circular pit or sinking for a former hut. It was
about 6 ft. in diameter and 18 in. deep, the floor
being covered with a burnt layer with fragments of
pottery; a second hut probably 8 or 9 ft. in diameter
had been built on the site of the first and at no
great distance of time from its destruction. The
only datable sherd was of an ordinary 1st-century
type [Antiq. Journ., V, 174].