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62. A chamber, 20 ft. 2 in. by 8 ft. 5 in. In the south-west corner was the base of what seemed to be a fire-place for cooking. It is shewn on the Plan.
63. A chamber, 24 ft. 4 in. long, 6 ft. 2 in. wide at the northern end, and 4 ft. 2 in. wide at the southern. Several fragments of richly coloured wall plaster were found in this oddly shaped chamber. It will be convenient to withhold our comments on the various sections of the villa until the whole of the numbered spaces upon the Plan have been dealt with.
We shall therefore now treat of the enclosures outside the courtyards.
64. This area, 191 ft. 6 in. by 48 ft., was possibly a walled garden, there being no cross walls and no trace of pavement.
65. A range of out-buildings floored with rammed chalk. The central space is 25 ft. 2 in. wide, and the two outer compartments 10 ft. 5 in. Their length, as far as they are shewn on the Plan, is 101 ft. 10 in., which will probably be exceeded if excavations are made in the adjoining property. The block may have been used for stabling horses and stalling cattle.
66. This chamber stood 35 ft. distant from the front wall of the semi-circular cistern (43). It was 16 ft. 3 in. square, and the projecting structure on the north side 3 ft. by 5 ft. 4 in.
The floor consisted of a layer of flints grouted with mortar, rather unevenly finished off on the surface. Its appearance suggesting that it was secondary work, a portion of the floor was cut away, revealing underneath a mass of broken tiles with pink mortar an inch thick adhering to the fragments. As this continued for some depth the entire floor was removed and the débris below thrown out. When all was cleared a large circular earth-pit remained, 13 ft. in diameter and 4 ft. deep. At the bottom lay, in a tilted position, a huge mass of masonry, semi-circular in form, consisting of portions of tiles bedded in pink mortar. The mass measured 5 ft. 9 in. both ways and 3 ft. thick. On the under-side several large flints adhered to the mortar, shewing that it had originally been laid upon a flint foundation. The pit seemed to have been excavated for the purpose of obtaining brickearth, subsequently becoming filled in with building rubbish, which undoubtedly came from the same structure as the mass just mentioned, as their component parts were identical. After the hole was filled up No. 66 was erected on the site.
57. The foundations of this building had been reduced by the plough to almost the last layer of flints.
It was 23 ft. wide and
exceeded 30 ft. in length.
Here we found an iron ring 4 in. in
diameter, and part of an iron chain.
68. A chamber, 18 ft. 11 in. by 6 ft. 6 in.
69. A rubbish hole scooped out in the chalk. In it were found fragments of Samian ware, one piece (the base of a cup) being stamped with the potter's name ALBVCIANI, a horse's bit, pieces of iron and pottery, four tiles which had formed the segments of a circle, and an iron stand with legs.
70. The foundations of this building, like the other portions adjoining it, which are lightly shaded on the Plan, were very meagre. The outer wall enclosed a space 39 ft. by 18 ft. 6 in. The floor was of rough mortar. In the north-west corner were four flange tiles in situ, laid 19 in. below the level of the floor, and a fifth was fixed in a vertical position. It may be described as a double gutter. The two portions of wall shewn in the interior of this out-house were not sufficiently well defined to enable one to say how they were related to the rest.
71. Four feet below the level of No. 70 the foundations of a large barn or store were met with. Its length, as far as could be ascertained, was 85 ft. 8 in., and width 28 ft. 4 in. The foundations were only a few inches deep, but they were as firm as a rock, the top surface having been coated with hard mortar, forming a perfect level. Above this came possibly a bonding course of tiles or woodwork. The floor of the barn was of rammed chalk. It was not deemed advisable to go to the expense of removing the enormous body of earth which covered this and the out-buildings to the west, otherwise perhaps some further light would have been thrown upon their history.
It is now time to say something of the various antiquities and other objects discovered during the work of excavating. They were not numerous, which may be accounted for by the villa having been abandoned instead of being destroyed by fire.
All portable articles of any value were probably taken away by the owners themselves, the remainder being left at the mercy of the wayfarer and incoming marauders.
These were of the usual kinds, the square varieties for paving or for use in the hypocausts ranging from 6 to 11 in. square, one tile measuring as much as 23 in. square.
It was noted that the oblong tiles on which the concrete floors were laid over hypocausts, in spite of their excellent quality, had been rendered exceedingly brittle by the action of fire. When the writer removed them from the floors almost every tile broke into fragments. The flue tiles were scored with those curious patterns familiar to archæologists. It is supposed that the scoring was done to enable the mortar to adhere more firmly to the tiles. Such would be the case, but why was it thought necessary with tiles that were intended to be built into walls? Then the old difficulty again presents itself as to why these tiles were so elaborately decorated when they were hidden from view.
Out of the fifty examples found at Darenth there were four different designs, which the writer is disposed to think were tile-makers' marks. It may be presumed that the tiles came from one manufactory, which was probably local, then why are the patterns not all the same? Our brick-yards at the present day contain a certain number of sheds or stools (as they are called), a given number of hands being employed in each stool. The moulds used have the initials of the master in relief at the bottom, so that when the clay is cast into the mould each brick receives an impress of the stamp. The Roman tile-makers were probably also divided into gangs in a similar way, and the writer is of opinion that the moulder of each "stool" had his own method of scoring the special productions of his handiwork. The flue tiles, from their peculiar form and the important use to which they were put, evidently required great care in their manufacture, and were perhaps made by workmen more skilled than those who turned out the ordinary flat tiles. The expert in masonry adopted a mark, and why not the potter also? If the theory we have advanced be accepted it still leaves unexplained the conceit of the latter in adorning the flue tiles on all four sides. The long cylindrical drainpipes built into the walls of No. 6 for smoke flues are very uncommon. Four similar but shorter examples were found some years since at Rochester, and are now in the Museum of that city.
The segmental tiles are also of equal rarity; four make a
circle 1 ft. 3 in. in diameter, giving us the size of columns and the material of which they were constructed in a district where stone was not available naturally.
Several tiles were found with impressions of a dog's feet upon them. One tile bore the marks of a cat's feet, and another a sandal studded with hob-nails.
A few fragments of pseudo-Samian ware were met with, one piece formed part of a mortarium, the rim being ornamented with lions' heads in high relief. There are holes through the mouth to enable liquid to be poured off. Two bases of cups are stamped respectively with the potter's names, ALBVCIANI and AMICI.MA.
Durobrivian or Caistor ware was scarce, but the potsherds obtained are fine specimens of this class of fictilia. The design consists of white rings, 1 in. in diameter, enclosing a smaller ring surrounded with dots, alternating with the ring pattern are narrow white vertical slips divided in the centre and terminating at both ends with a small circular disc.
Some fragments of this ware had acquired a beautiful lustre during the process of firing, exactly resembling in colour and appearance the bronzed kid of which ladies' shoes are made.
The miscellaneous ware include fragments of amphora, dolia, and mortaria of a dun colour, red pottery decorated with a white scroll design similar to the letter placed horizontally, and Upchurch ware.
The articles under this heading, to the number of thirty, comprise pins for fastening the hair or garments, piercers, bodkins or needles, the handle of a fan, a shuttle and bobbin, and an instrument with three hooks carved at its point, on the principle of the modern crochet hook. The pins have nearly all plain round-headed knobs at the top, two or three only being ornamented.
Out of the whole number three belong to the first century, five to the second, thirty to the third, and eleven to the fourth.
With the exception of the lioness's head already mentioned, the articles in this metal are of no special merit; they comprise bangle-like armlets, portions of brooches, tweezers, rings, studs, two pieces of chain and other frag
Objects of this metal were fairly abundant, including nails of all kinds, pruning hooks, staples, wall-hooks, pothangers, knives, two or three carpenter's tools, a spear-head, and one of those curious articles which some authorities have considered to be hippo-sandals (see cut opposite). Although the writer is unable to offer any opinion as to their use, he cannot accept the notion that they were ever attached to horses' hoofs. Lieut.-General Pitt Rivers suggests (Excavations in Cranborne Chase, vol. i., pp. 76-79) that they were used in connection with a kind of sledge without wheels which had poles or shafts dragging on the ground, and when such were required to traverse hard roads the ends of the shafts would be fitted with these iron shoes to prevent