FIND SPOTLIGHT: The Grey Friars tile

This late 13th century floor tile is one of many found during the excavation of Grey Friars in Leicester in 2012. The tile is of a ‘Stabbed Wessex’ style, commonly found across the English midlands, and it would have originally been laid in the chancel of the friary church, most likely in the choir area. The design appears to be that of an eagle displayed … Continue reading FIND SPOTLIGHT: The Grey Friars tile

FIND SPOTLIGHT: Leicester’s link with Roman Egypt

This small, rectangular ivory panel (just 57mm long) was found during the excavation of a large Roman townhouse in Leicester’s north-east quarter (today situated beneath the John Lewis car park on Vaughan Way). It  is from a box and it is an extraordinary find. Relief-carved ivory boxes are extremely rare discoveries and this fragment is exceptional because of its design. Unusually, instead of belonging to a … Continue reading FIND SPOTLIGHT: Leicester’s link with Roman Egypt

FIND SPOTLIGHT: The Papal Bulla of Pope Innocent VI

This papal bulla was found during the excavation of St Peter’s church (the site today lies beneath the John Lewis store in Leicester’s Highcross shopping centre). It would originally have been attached by a cord to the bottom of a letter or charter issued by Pope Innocent VI (1352-1362) to authenticate it. In this case, the bulla was probably attached to a Papal Indulgence. This … Continue reading FIND SPOTLIGHT: The Papal Bulla of Pope Innocent VI

FIND SPOTLIGHT: Britain’s oldest coin?

This Roman Republican silver denarii was found in the Hallaton treasure hoard. It was struck in Rome before the Roman general Scipio defeated Hannibal and could have been made as far back as 211 BC, which would make it one of the oldest coins found in Britain. The coin depicts the goddess Roma on one side and the twins Castor and Pollox on galloping horses … Continue reading FIND SPOTLIGHT: Britain’s oldest coin?

FIND SPOTLIGHT: The art of medieval ice skating

With the recent cold spell in mind, let us first look at winter pastimes in medieval Leicester. These are perhaps best illustrated by the discovery of a late 13th century bone ice-skate in the town’s north-eastern quarter, near the site of St Michael’s church (today located beneath the John Lewis multi-story car park on Vaughan Way). The skate is 24.6cm long and is carved from … Continue reading FIND SPOTLIGHT: The art of medieval ice skating

Introducing FIND SPOTLIGHT

Welcome to our new feature, FIND SPOTLIGHT. Over the years, ULAS archaeologists have uncovered a fascinating array of artefacts from a wide range of time periods and walks of life. Every discovery has a unique story, providing important insights into the past lifestyles, beliefs and skills of the people who crafted and used them. Over the next month, FIND SPOTLIGHT will look at four unique artefacts, … Continue reading Introducing FIND SPOTLIGHT