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TOMEN-Y-MUR Merioneth, Wales.

On an exposed but commanding site on the S side of the Vale of Ffestiniog, this Roman fort enjoys wide views to the S, W, and N. It is important for the remarkable preservation of its earthworks. These include not only the fort but several of its ancillary structures: parade ground with tribunal, ludus, two practice camps (with others at Dolddinas, 2.4 km to the SE), and the causeway for a timber bridge over a nearby stream. Together they provide a more complete picture of the environs of an auxiliary fort than is available anywhere else.

Excavation reveals that the fort is of two periods. The earlier one (ca. 152 x 109 m; ca. 1.7 ha) had earth and timber defenses and timber barracks, and must be dated ca. A.D. 75-85. About A.D. 120 the fort was reduced to an area of 1.3 ha by the abandonment of the retentura, and the reduced area was given a stone defensive wall. It was apparently given up by ca. A.D. 140. Finds from Tomen-y-Mur are in the National Museum of Wales, Cardiff, and the Segontium Museum, Caernarvon.


C. A. Gresham, “The Roman Fort at Tomen-y-mur,” Archaeologia Cambrensis 93 (1938) 192-211P; M. G. Jarrett, “Excavations at Tomen-y-mur, 1962: interim report,” Journal Merioneth Hist. and Record Soc. 4 (1961-64) 171-75I; V. E. Nash-Williams, The Roman Frontier in Wales (2d ed. by M. G. Jarrett 1969) 111-13MPI.


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