Roman swords are among a treasure trove of stunning artifacts found at the site of an ancient cavalry barracks in the U.K.
Recent excavations at the Roman fort of Vindolanda just south of Hadrian’s Wall in Northern England have resulted in a slew of stunning finds. These included a complete sword with a bent tip, found in the corner of a former living room at the site, which archaeologists say is the equivalent of a modern soldier leaving behind a malfunctioning rifle. Another sword and two small wooden toy swords were also found in adjacent rooms.
Other weapons, including cavalry lances, arrowheads and bolts from balistas, or catapults, were also found on the abandoned barrack room floors, along with copper-alloy fitments for saddles, straps and harnesses. Also preserved in a layer of oxygen-free soil at the site were Roman ink writing tablets on wood, bath clogs, leather shoes, stylus pens, knives, combs, hairpins and brooches.
“As a collection of artefacts, it doesn’t really get better than what we have discovered,” Dr. Andrew Birley, CEO of the Vindolanda Trust and director of excavations at the site, told Fox News, via email. “The range of material along with handwritten documents will hopefully give us names, personal thoughts and emotions and enable us to build a very vivid picture of life on the edge of empire before Hadrian’s Wall was built.”
The artifacts date to around 120 A.D. when the fort was occupied by the 1st Cohort of Tungrians, who hailed from modern-day Belgium, according to experts. The Tungrians were also…