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MONUMENT NO. 1302380


Roman activity at Mucking. Excavations at the extensive cropmark complex between 1965 and 1978 uncovered much evidence for activity throughout the Roman period, though little of this evidence has yet been published in detail (see TQ 68 SE 16). In the absence of more detailed information, much of the Roman occupation is summarised here. The Roman period saw a change in the pattern of settlement and in the agricultural landscape of the terrace. Enclosures, ditches and droveways represent fields, while actual settlement was concentrated roughly on the southeast edge of the site and in the centre. The principal feature in the central area was a large double-ditched enclosure (130 metres by 90 metres) containing what is interpreted as a farmstead. Part of the interior was closed off by a further ditched enclosure and was used as a cemetery, almost all the burials being cremations. The principal building in the main enclosure was an aisled building circa 17 metres by 6 metres; others included a large granary constructed on a sleeper beam foundation and other rectangular structures. Further small cemeteries were located at various places on the terrace. 23 pottery kilns have also been recognised, some dating to very early in the Roman period. Evidence for domestic activity is more sparse in the later Roman period, suggesting that much of the area was by then given over entirely to agriculture. By the fourth century it seems that the agricultural elements of the landscape were no longer being maintained, and ditches were being left to silt up, and there seems to be a clear break between the Roman activity and the extensive evidence for Saxon settlement and burial. See TQ 68 SE 16 and associated monuments for further details of the Mucking excavations and for additional published sources.

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