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Find Spot record MDR3374 - Lead pigs in pit, Shiningford Farm, Carsington

Type and Period (1)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Full Description

SK 252524. Two Roman lead pigs were discovered by metal detector in 1983. They were uninscribed, weighed c120lbs each and had been cast in a single mould. (1) Following the discovery of the lead pigs in July 1983, a small-scale excavation was undertaken the following month. This revealed that the pigs had been placed in the bottom of a Roman pit. Approximately 180 sherds of Roman pottery were recovered, the evidence from which suggested a mid to late 4th century date for the Carsington pit. The original purpose of the pit is uncertain. Given the difficulty of digging into the heavy clay, it is unlikely to have been dug for rubbish disposal, and there is nothing in the artifactual or environmental material to suggest that it was a rubbish dump. It is possible that it represents an aborted well-pit. A concentration of daub, scrap lead, galena, slag and wood ash in the lowest level of the pit fill suggests that soon after it was dug it began to be filled with debris which came from a metal working area, presumably in the vicinity. There is no explanation as to why the two pigs should have been deposited in this pit, but they must have been deliberately place here since they sat neatly one on top of the other. The fact that they came from the same mould, together with the metallurgical debris and wood ash found in the same level, suggests the pigs may have been made close to the pit. Evidence of 4th century lead working came from an excavated site about 100m to the south-east (Carsington Site A, see SMR 3209). (2) In 1983 two uninscribed pigs were discovered in a pit close to the excavated buildings at Site A. These are the only examples in the region to have been recovered using archaeological techniques. Artefacts within the pit, which may be residual, indicated that these were of late Roman date, the pit having been dug in the 4th century AD at earliest, probably in its second half. (3) For Roman lead working in Carsington, see: Roman Settlement (Carsington Site A), (SMR3209) Roman Farmstead (Carsington Site B), (SMR3222) Roman Settlement in Carsington, (SMR3244) Lead pigs in pit, (SMR32432) Roman Road, Buxton to Derby ('The Street'), (SMR99030) Roman Pottery, (SMR3219) Roman lead pig, (SMR3251) Roman inscribed weighted lead pig, (SMR3252)

Sources/Archives (3)

  • <1> Bibliographic reference: Britannia 15 1984 290.
  • <2> Article in serial: Branigan, K, Housley, C & Housley, J. 1986. 'Two Roman lead pigs from Carsington', Derbyshire Archaeological Journal. Volume 106, pp 5-17.
  • <3> Article in serial: Barnatt, J. 1999. 'Prehistoric and Roman mining in the Peak District- present knowledge and future research', Mining History: The Bulletin of the Peak District Mines Historical Society.



Grid reference SK 251 524 (point) (Centre)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (1)

  • EDR2581

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Record last edited

Apr 13 2015 12:18PM

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