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subject consists of two parts, bordered and separated by growing tree-trunks. To the right are three Kings at different stages of life, young, middle-aged, and old. To the left are three standing skeletons-what the former shall come to be. In the foreground a young huntsman is seen holding in leash a straining greyhound, and a hare is speeding along in wild terror. It is considered to be the work of the fourteenth century, having been probably executed for the famous Robert de Lincoln, first Rector of Wickhampton.
Several pages are devoted to papers on Churchyard Memorials, Tranent and St. Andrews, some of which are marked by the originality of the symbolical forms employed. A large number of craft insignia and tools are represented. In Tranent the Butchers' Guild figures largely. In St. Andrews a gruesome relic of resurrectionist days is exhibited, a collar of iron used to encircle the neck of a coffined corpse, so as to make the removal of the body difficult, if not impossible. The ends were passed through the strong bottom of the coffin, where the locking nuts were made doubly secure by the spreading of the divided tangs.
Among other valuable articles is one on Rock-hewn Caves in the Valley of the Esk and in various parts of Scotland, some of which recall the legend of Wayland Smith. Popular tradition has been largely concerned with these caves.
THE chief feature of this volume, published by the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, is the "Report of the Excavations at Corstopitum," which have had the advantage of supervision by Professor Haverfield. The special interest of these investigations is that the Committee in charge of the excavations are able to show that Corstopitum, about which little was known at the outset, dated from an early period in the Roman conquest of the Tyne Valley, shared in the vicissitudes of succeeding centuries, and that its occupation continued until the very eve of the departure of the Roman troops from Britain. Amongst the most recent finds is a well-preserved altar with inscription
IOVI AETERNO DOLICHENO ET CAELESTI BRIGANTIAE.
Dolichenus, Professor Haverfield remarks, is a well-known God, and Brigantia is familiar to us on several altars in the land inhabited by the Brigantes. The epithet Cælestis provokes conjecture. Cælestis was the Latin name of the old Carthaginian deity Tanit. In Corstopitum, where the Tyrian Heracles and Astarte had a worshipper, it is conceivable that Tanit had also some dim remembrance.
An article on " Durham Seals," excellently illustrated, notices an early seal of the great Earl of Chester, Randulph Blondeville, 11811232. This bears a wolf passant. His later arms, depicted by Matthew Paris and also blazoned in the roll of Henry III, are— azure, three sheaves gold.
Archaeological Notes and Queries.
THE CAERGWRLE CUP.-This beautiful work of early art, which excited such interest when exhibited at a meeting of the Society of Antiquaries, in 1823, soon after its discovery, will shortly, through the generosity of Sir Foster Cunliffe of Acton Park, be transferred to the National Museum at Cardiff. It was found in a field at the foot of the steep hill on which the ruined castle of Caergwrle stands. The workman who found it, while carrying on some draining opera
tions in this marshy field, seeing the gold and supposing it to be some ornament of a coffin, struck it with his spade and broke it.1
The Rev. George Cunliffe, Vicar of Wrexham, who was then living near, on hearing of the discovery purchased it, and it remained until his death, in 1884, in his possession, passing then into the hands of the late Sir Robert Cunliffe of Acton Park, the father of the present baronet.
In shape it resembles a cup or bowl, and in the account given of it to the Society of Antiquaries, by Sir Samuel Rush Meyrick, it is described as "richly inlaid on the exterior with thin gold in various devices, the gold leaf beautifully tooled and extremely pure, the border being formed of concentric circles, and the rest of parallel lines, where it was made to double over the edge. The ornament of the under part consists of a central band very sharply indented both
1 Arch. Camb., 1875.
ways, and at a little distance on each side another composed of three lines of zig-zag, which is again bounded by another indented border." At a later period the vessel was described by the Rev. E. L. Barnwell, in Arch. Camb., 1875, when its dimensions were said to belength, 9 in., an average breadth of 4 in., the depth 2 in. Canon George Cunliffe was of opinion that it was, when perfect, 2 in. more each way. The body of the cup is said to be of oak, ornamented with exquisite bands of gold, as described by Sir Samuel Meyrick. What was its exact purpose, and whether it was intended for use for libations of a religious or a social character, is, of course, a matter of conjecture, and its proper attribution is rendered difficult by the fact that only one or two vessels of the kind appear to have been preserved. The cup was exhibited in the temporary museum at the Wrexham meeting, in 1874. Since that period it has not been open to inspection. With Mr. Barnwell's article, in 1875, an admirable illustration in gold and colours was given from an original drawing by Miss Cunliffe, of Pant yr Ochyn, Gresford. For some reason or other the artist has given only part of the details, apparently on the presumption that the portions omitted might be easily inferred. In other respects the details are given with accuracy.
CHESTER A ROMAN GRAVEYARD.-Roman remains are being unearthed at Chester on the site of the extension of the infirmary, at a depth of about 5 ft. in close clay soil. Numerous Roman graves have been discovered, and in all eighteen skeletons. The site is believed to be that of a graveyard used by the 20th Legion of the Romans during their occupation of the city. The most recent discovery is a grave in which are the skeletons of a mother and babe. In each instance the skeletons had been buried with the head pointing north. The teeth are perfect.
Professor Robert Newstead reports on this discovery as follows: "I cannot," he says, "enter into the peculiarities of the skeletons and bones, of which there will be some considerable information to give at a later period. The evidence, so far as it goes, proves conclusively that the Infirmary field was not used as a burying ground during the outbreak of the Plague; in other words, that all the burials which have so far been unearthed belong to the Roman period. I believe the reason why the field has been in later years referred to as the Plague Field, is that in years gone by many drains were laid in this field, and as evidenced by the recent discoveries, some of these modern drains had intersected the burials. Thus it was that in finding human remains it was no doubt concluded that they were the victims of the great Plague. This is, however, not the case. The number of graves in all was seventeen. These are of four distinct types. One is a tomb formed of local sandstone, evidently representing a burial of some importance, as the walls of the tomb or grave were partly covered in
plaster, and the upper portion or dome of the structure must originally have stood out in marked contrast to the surrounding surface of the land, forming a distinct tumulus. Three graves had been formed by placing Roman roofing tiles upon the floor, and also at the sides, several of which bore the stamp of the 20th Legion, and it is curious and interesting to note that all of these legionary stamps were placed so that they faced inwards. Another type of burial differs from either of the preceding, in that a distinct cyst was formed by placing roughly-hewn sandstone, so that a V-shaped trough was formed for the reception of the body. Over this, the coverings consisted of broken Roman roofing tiles. This was a child burial. In all the remaining burials a simple trench had been dug in the solid clay, none of them exceeding a depth of two feet from the top of the original land surface. Reference has already been made to the fact that all these graves are of Roman origin, and that is borne out by the fact that in two instances bronze coins were discovered, one of Antoninus Pius, and the other probably of Commodus. It is a well-known fact that coins were placed usually in the mouth of the deceased, and are generally referred to as Charon's passage fare,' to expedite the passage of the souls across the lake in Hades, as it was believed that the man or person, who had not received the usual rites of burial, and in whose mouth no fee for the ferryman of the Stygian lake had been placed, would wander hopelessly on its banks, while a decent interment and a small coin would obviate any disagreeable enquiries that Charon might else be inclined to make. In addition to this a very interesting terra-cotta lamp was found, which was also one of the usual offerings to the dead, and this was probably filled with oil and placed in the grave lighted. It was furthermore an emblem of immortality. The discovery of a number of large nails in the majority of the burials has led to the theory that the bodies had been crucified. As a matter of fact, such nails have been found in Roman burials elsewhere in Britain and in other parts of the world, and they are probably symbolical of time or money. Not the least interesting discoveries were the remains of Roman sandals, or, to be more correct, the iron studs with which the soles of the Roman sandals had been filled. In removing the clay which formed the floor of one of the graves, there was found an unfinished, or partly finished, stone implement belonging to the Neolithic period. This is extremely interesting, and affords further evidence that Chester was in all probability prior to the Roman occupation inhabited by early man.'
In the process of further excavation, another Roman grave has been unearthed, containing three urns, in one of which was a metal mirror. Professor Newstead promises later a full description, with illustrations, of the discoveries.
THE EXCAVATIONS ON PARC Y MEIRCH.--The ancient fortification on Parc y Meirch, which was visited by the members in September last, has recently been excavated under the direction of Mr. Willoughby Gardner. The site is described in Arch. Camb., 1912, p. 166, as a tree-covered rocky promontory over 500 ft. high, overlooking the vale of Clwyd, with an interior area of 6 acres, and evidently selected for the sake of the ready-made defences of steep slopes and rocky crags. The neck of the promontory alone needed fortification, and across this neck, therefore, there was constructed a massive rampart with a ditch outside it. In process of excavation it has been discovered that the highest rampart consists of a rubble core piled up on the original surface of the ground. The height of the rampart, measured from the interior area of the camp, was 16 ft. From the crest of the rampart there is a very steep slope down to the present surface of the ditch on the outside. This ditch has been re-excavated, and its bottom is found to be 9 ft. below the present surface, so that makes, altogether, from the crest of the rampart to the bottom of the ditch, a vertical drop of 45 ft. Along the crest of the rampart have been discovered remnants of the former wall of dry masonry which faced the rubble core at this point. There are reasons for believing that this masonry, which is now found to have fallen to the bottom of the ditch in front, originally stood about 8 ft. high, which would make the vertical depth from the top of the wall to the bottom of the ditch 53 ft. Thus, this rampart and ditch constituted a stupendous defence, and, with the other ramparts and ditches, the fortification must have been practically impregnable in the days when it was constructed. The ditch between the second and third rampart and the shallower ditch outside the third rampart have had sections cut across them, but the relics found at the bottom of these cuttings have been disappointingly small. In the middle ditch fragments of a human skull and tibia were found lying lengthwise.
The next thing was to investigate the gap in the ramparts to the south-east. After searching first on one side and then on the other traces of an original entrance were discovered. This has now been partially excavated, and shows dry masonry facing-walls made of large blocks of stone on either side of the passage, and the design and construction appear to resemble the entrances previously excavated at Pen y Corddyn. In the interior area, relics of a considerable resident population have been found. Large quantities of broken pottery continue to be unearthed. Much of this is conspicuously Roman, ranging probably from the first to the fourth century.1
The finds include fragments of jars, large and small bowls, saucers, dishes, and mortaria. These pots, &c., are met with in various kinds of ware-red, black, and grey. There are one or two frag
1 By a typographical error this pottery was stated in Arch. Camb., 1912, p. 166, to be 200 instead of at least 1200 years.