Roman finds in Winchester
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The latest discovery at Jewry Street has been a row of up to 8 Roman cess pits, running in a line north to south through the middle of the site. They lie half way between two Roman streets and either served a public building or, more likely, lay to the rear of the houses which fronted the two streets. The pits are cut 5-6 metres deep into the underlying chalk and only one other like them has been found in Winchester.
The pits are an exciting source of evidence: as well as degraded human waste, they contain fragments of pottery, building materials and many animal bones.
Small items have been found: bronze finger rings, a fine bone pin, tweezers and coins accidentally dropped into the pits nearly 2,000 years ago.
The most valuable information may well come from the smallest finds of all - the remains of mineralised seeds, fruit stones and insects, which will give us more evidence of the diet and way of life in Roman Winchester.