|Remains of the Vindolanda fort.|
Archaeologists are likening the discovery to winning the lottery. A Roman cavalry barracks has been unearthed near Hadrian’s Wall, complete with extraordinary military and personal possessions left behind by soldiers and their families almost 2,000 years ago. A treasure trove of thousands of artefacts dating from the early second century has been excavated over the past fortnight.The room, which was sealed when the Romans covered it with a concrete floor, contained two Roman cavalry swords, lances, wooden practice swords (one of which has a gemstone set in the hilt, fancy!), and even mundane items such as bath clogs, styluses, combs, hairpins, and more. The concrete floor itself apparently is what preserved all of these items by creating an airtight seal.
The find is significant not just because of its size and pristine state, but also for its contribution to the history of Hadrian’s Wall, showing the military build-up that led to its construction in AD122. The barracks pre-dates the wall: the Romans already had a huge military presence in the area, keeping the local population under control.
It's really fascinating to think that all of that stuff was just laying there for near two millennia and is now just being found. It really goes to show how much history is still left buried in the ground and that archaeology is not a field that will be going away anytime soon.