previous next

CARPOW Perthshire, Scotland.

A military base on the S bank of the Tay, used by Septimius Severus during his British campaigns in 208-11, and described by Cassius Dio (76.12f) and Herodian (3.14). Its Roman name is unknown, but it was not Horrea Classis as was believed earlier. The defenses, formed of a 6 m earth bank and two ditches, enclose an irregular quadrilateral (337.5 m E-W x 280.8 N-S; 11.16 ha). In the middle of each side was a stone gate with two passageways but no guard chambers.

Inside, near the center of the enclosure, was a stone principia (46.5 x 39 m) and the bath suite of a praetorium. Tiles were stamped by Legio VI victrix with the titles BRITANNICA PIA FIDELIS (LEG VI VIC B P F), and the Legio Augusta is attested as well by its emblems of the capricorn and pegasi on a sculpture found at the E gate. Aerial photographs have revealed legionary barracks in the praetentura, an annex at the SE, and a large temporary encampment enclosing the entire Severan complex. The base was abandoned soon after 212, when Caracalla made peace with the Britons, although a TRAIECTUS coin of that ruler showing a bridge of boats probably refers to Carpow, while a fragmentary inscription from the E gate probably dates to some time not long after 211.


R. E. Birley, Proc. Soc. Ant. Scot. 96 (1962-63) 184ffMPI; R. P. Wright, ibid. 97 (1963-64) 202ff (inscription); JRS 59 (1969) 110 (aerial photographs), 203P; J. K. St. Joseph, ibid. 63 (1973) 220ffMPI.


hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: