Collection online

forgery / tile

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    1908,0613.1

  • Description

    Fragment of ceramic tile, purported to come from Anderita Roman fort at Pevensey, and stamped with name of fort. Probably a fake.

  • Culture/period

  • Findspot

  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 107 millimetres
  • Inscriptions

      • Inscription Type

        inscription
      • Inscription Content

        HON AVG ANDRIA
  • Curator's comments

    Jones 1990
    Stamped brick from Pevensey, Sussex
    This fragment of fired-clay brick or tile bearing the stamp HON AVG ANDRIA was published in 1907 by Charles Dawson as a find made during the 1902 excavations at the late Roman fort at Pevensey. Dawson subsequently presented it to the British Museum. The stamp, apparently giving the name of the Emperor Honorius (r. AD 395-423) has been regarded as important evidence for the refurbishing of the walls of the fort towards the end of the fourth century; furthermore, the word 'Andria' was thought to support the view that the Roman name for the site was Anderida. It appears that three, or possibly four, examples of Roman tiles with this stamp came to light at Pevensey; one of these is now in Lewes Museum.
    Both the clay fabric of the tile and the lettering of the stamp are unusual for the Roman period, and in 1972 Dr David Peacock of Southampton University carried out further research into the matter. Thermoluminescence analysis at Oxford and in the British Museum Research Laboratory indicated that the tile was made not in the Roman period, but towards the end of the nineteenth or beginning of the twentieth century. TL analysis of the example at Lewes produced a similar result.

    Literature: C. Dawson, 'Some inscribed bricks and tiles from the Roman Castra at Pevensey (Anderida?), Sussex', Proc. Soc. Ant. Lond. XXI (1907), pp. 410-13; D. Peacock, 'Forged brick-stamps from Pevensey', Antiquity XLVII (1973), pp.138-40.

    More 

  • Bibliography

    • Jones 1990a 91 bibliographic details
  • Location

    Not on display

  • Exhibition history

    Exhibited:
    2003-2004 21 Nov-21 Feb, London, Natural History Museum, Piltdown Forgeries Exhibition

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date

    1908

  • Department

    Britain, Europe and Prehistory

  • Registration number

    1908,0613.1

Ceramic tile stamped fragment.

Ceramic tile stamped fragment.

Image description

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Object reference number: BCB67112

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