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Odd what you find in the road, #Roman pot?

This was a nice find and it literally was a find.

After serious flooding in the Upper Thames a few years ago I found this pot in about two feet of water, sat in the middle of a B road.

Well, it must be Roman, it must be but how do you find out? The best and most responsible thing to do is to make a note of where you found it (a 12-figure grid reference is ideal but nothing less than 6) and then contact your local Finds Liaison Officer (FLO).

A Finds Liaison Officer is an archaeologist who works for The British Museum's Portable Antiquities Scheme. They borrow your item, photograph it and record it on their database of over 1.5 million items (www.finds.org.uk/database) and then you get it back – unless it is deemed as Treasure (www.finds.org.uk/treasure) and a museum wants to purchase it from you (you will receive a reward from the Crown for its value for finding it if this is the case). This is all free and the FLO will provide you with a written description and you will be able to view your item on The British Museums database.

So, what is it?

This is the write up that the FLO recorded and can be seen at :


A complete post-medieval ceramic red earthenware vessel dating to the 18th or early 19th century AD. From the base the vessel flares outwards into a straight sided pot with out-turned rim. Externally the red colour of the clay is only visible over a small area; the rest of the external surface of the vessel is brownish-grey in colour, possibly sooting but also possibly a result of firing in a reduced atmosphere. There is no glaze externally, however internally the vessel is covered in a brown lead glaze, speckled in places and not quite reaching to the top of the rim. The lipped rim is likely to have been created so that a simple paper or cloth lid could be secured with a tie around the underside of the lip; Maureen Mellor (University of Oxford) comments that this is probably a honey pot, and may have come from the Leafield potteries in the later 18th or 19th century AD. Although there are several cracks in the fabric and a small chip out of the rim the vessel is in very good condition considering its deposition.

Copyright Oxfordshire County Council (CC BY 2.0)

So, its not Roman at all, in fact its not very old and just about worthless, but who cares, it is part of local history I found it in the floods and it is sitting on the bookshelf.

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