- Museum number
Pipeclay bull figurine. This mould-made figurine, complete and in good condition, depicts a heavily-built bull, with deep solid neck and dewlap, standing on a flat plinth. The bull is uncastrated and wears a band around the middle of his body which is probably intended to represent the sash worn by sacrificial animals - he had been selected as a sacrificial gift to the gods.
- Production date
Length: 150 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- Mould-made pipeclay figurines, mostly for use in religious contexts, were mass-produced in Roman Gaul and amongst the surviving examples images of Venus and Mother Goddesses are especially numerous. Animal figurines were also popular, but this figurine is an uncommon type.
The figurine is part of a grave group: the cremated remains of a child in a samian beaker, flanked by pipeclay figurines of a bull and a horse, together with three other pots, two bracelets and two metal fittings, were found in a small pit by Mr G. Reeve while digging the footings for a garage at his home in the centre of Roman Godmanchester in 1991. The finding circumstances were recorded by Mrs D. Reeve who photographed the objects as her husband carefully removed them from the ground.
Mr and Mrs Reeve retained the burial group (dated to the mid-2nd century AD by the pottery) but made it available for publication: Taylor, A., 1997, 'A Roman child burial with animal figurines and pottery, from Godmanchester, Cambridgeshire', Britannia 28 (1997), 386-93.
- On display (G49/dc11)
- Acquisition date
- Britain, Europe and Prehistory
- Registration number