Silchester – A perambulation

Silchester Roman Town

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A walk around the derelict Roman walls of Silchester.

Originally the tribal centre of ancient Iron Age Atrebates (1), Silchester became the large and important Roman town of Calleva Atrebatum. Unlike the majority of Roman towns, it was never re-occupied or built over after its abandonment in the 5th century, so subsequent archaeological investigations give an unusually complete picture of its development.

 

  1. Cognate with Old Irish aittrebaid meaning ‘inhabitant’, Atrebates comes from proto-Celtic ad-treb-a-t-es, ‘inhabitants’. The Celtic root is treb- ‘building’, ‘home’ ( Old Irish treb ‘building’, ‘farm’, Welsh tref ‘town’, Middle Breton treff ‘city’, toponymic relatives in Tre-, Provençal trevar ‘to live in a house or in a village’), which has been linked to the root of English thorpe, ‘village’. Edith Wightman suggested that their name may be intended to mean the people of the (inland) earth to contrast with that of the neighbouring coastal Morini, “people of the sea”

Calleva Attrebatum – A PERAMBULATION

FLINT TOWERS

FOSSIL  TREE

STONE ENCLOSURE

HOT AND HUMID

A GATHERING DUST

VERTEBRAL WALLS

LITHIC MEMORY

VIOLENT STONE PROJECTIONS

A CROW OBSERVER

LOST AMPHITHEATRE

MURMUR OF DISTANT TRAFFIC

GHOSTED INSULAE

SEARCHING FOR WATER

BRACKEN ENCROACHING

NATURE RECLAIMING REVENANT ARCHES

ECHOES OF VOICES

HANDS TOUCHING ARCHAIC STONE

HEARTS OF GRASSES

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