Find Spot record MCC2921 - Middle Iron Age placed deposit


A shallow pit contained a placed pottery vessel was found at the centre of the round-house during excavation in 2003.


Grid reference Not recorded
Map sheet Not recorded
County ESSEX


No mapped location recorded.

Type and Period (1)

Full Description

A shallow pit containing the disturbed remnants of a placed pottery vessel was located in the centre of the round-house. The pot has the appearance of a cremation burial, but no burnt bone was found in the sieved samples. Instead, two tiny crumbs of un-burnt mammal bone were identified. Whether or not this pot originally contained cremated bone, which has not survived the acid soils, its central position defines it as a ritual deposit apparently significant to the owners of the round-house. It is possible that the placed pottery deposit itself was intended to commemorate the construction of their building and, if it was a burial, to link it directly with their ancestors. This type of offering has been postulated elsewhere for buried human remains and other placed depositions within round-houses, as ‘foundation deposits’. Alternatively the deposit may have been placed during the lifetime of the settlement.

If the place deposit did originally contain cremated bone, which on balance seems unlikely (given survival of cremated bone from Early Iron Age cremations in Area 10), then a possible parallel for the use of a Middle Iron Age pot for a cremation comes from Mucking, near Thurrock in Essex. Here an ‘omphalos jar’ in a sandy, therefore usually characterised as Middle Iron Age fabric, was found with cremated bone. <1>

Sources/Archives (1)

  • <1> EXCAV REPORT: Brooks, Howard (CAT) and Masefield, Robert (RPS Group). 2005. The Colchester Garrison PFI project, Colchester Essex: a report on the 2002 excavation of Areas 2, 6, 10. CAT report 292, pg 10.

Finds (0)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (2)

Record last edited

Oct 22 2009 8:59AM

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