Time Team Paw Marks

Did anyone watch Time Team today?

Apparently, they found a marked stone with, I quote (maybe not quote actually) ‘paw marks’ within the context of a Roman temple. You only got the briefest of glances (2 or 3 secs at most), but the marks looked suspiciously cup-like to my failing eyesight.

Admittedly the temple is near St Albans, so it’s not exactly at the epicentre of cup and ring industry, but it might be worth having a gander at 4onDemand – once TT is on. I think it was about 5-10mins from end.

…..not that I’m suggesting the continuation of CnR tradition into the IA-RB period or owt :-), but could this be another addition to the Corbridge and Greta Bridge collection?

They also found a skull shaped stone with several depressions – I presume they thought the depressions were natural.



9 Responses to Time Team Paw Marks

  1. Hob says:

    Eyup chaps,

    The ‘head stone’ provoked comment in our living room too. The idea that it was somehow held in it’s own little niche in the temple seemed like a bit of a leap of faith. It did look suspiciously like a cup marked portable, but it also looked a bit oolitic, so they could have been natural cups.

    It also prompted a minor rant from me about how a dubious cup marked stone can be lauded as a ‘ritual’ object when found in a roman temple, whilst the bona fide cup marked stone found in the mysterious building 12 at Corstopitum (Corbridge) is relegated to being some kind of accidental rubble.

  2. rockrich says:

    Just watched the prog again on 4oD, I’ll pay more attention next time 🙂


  3. David Forster says:

    Animal prints on roman floor tiles are quite common. Quite a few at Vindolanda and other Roman sites. If you do any concreting at home it is not unusual to get dog or cat prints in it as it sets. Same thing when the romans laid their tiles out to dry.

  4. Graemec says:

    Pretty sure they said part of a tile (roof?) with a paw print on it.
    I could picture it been intentionally included in the temple given the high regard for dogs among the celts?
    celtic root word Cun = dog , Cunobelinus (dog of Belinus – the Sungod). was a British tribal chieftan in that part of Britain?

    That ‘head stone’ was quite eeiry to look at and sort of out of place in the neat and tidy romano-British (re :civilised?) temple the experts were suggesting.
    But its wierd anthropomorphic (human like) quality fits alongside the iron age wooden idols found in peat bogs, which are made from tree branches like contorted ‘stick men’ with legs and arms etc
    These all chime with the Saami peoples anthropmorphic Seida – but thats another story 🙂

  5. Geo Cur says:

    The prog gets repeated next Saturday C4 7pm .

  6. Geo Cur says:

    It was a big lump Rich , I assumed it to be part the clay floor though they did use the term tile .


  7. rockrich says:

    cheers George, I was under the firm impression of it being a stone rather than a tile, I’ll have to get my lugs syringed and some new specs me finks 🙂

    Jan, don’t send Joop on a mission yet.

  8. Geo Cur says:

    Hi Rich , saw the prog , the wee glimpse was of a floor tile probably made from clay , it seems like a common practice .

    The skull /big cobble was a possibility although the right” eye “on the skull looked a bit
    less cup and more appropriately tear or conjoined cup shape , there was a brief glimpse whilst Frances Pryor held it out of sight so I stared hard when it was shown . A Romano -British association would be a turn up , I’m surprised there was no mention they certainly commented on the “moulds ” from the fens that had motifs similar to c’n’r .


  9. rockartuk says:

    Thanks for the tip, Rich.
    My brother Joop lives in St Albans and he knows what cups are like.
    I could ask him to take a look (and photos!) there if I had some more information about the exact location.

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