SGRP home page

The National Roman Fabric Reference Collection: a Handbook

Hand specimen picture panel
Thin section picture panel


Appendix 1: Keywords and Definitions
Appendix 2: Physical Layout of Sherds Housed in the NRFRC


Gallia-Belgica Terra Rubra 1B (GAB TR 1B)

Single sample

General appearance

Our sherd is pale pink (5YR 6/4) with a matt red-brown (10R 5/6) slip, although others may be as light coloured as buff, with orange to coral-pink slip (Rigby 1989a, 126). The sample is hard with a hackly break and smooth surfaces. Forms comprise platters and cups, frequently stamped with the maker’s mark (Rigby 1989a, 126).

Hand specimen

The fabric contains abundant well-sorted quartz, both subrounded and angular, ranging to <0.3mm but normally not exceeding 0.2mm, set in a very loosely constructed clay matrix. Other inclusions are sparse, but include black and red iron-rich fragments in the same size range as the quartz.

Thin section

Common well-sorted quartz inclusions, frequently angular and normally measuring 0.1–0.2mm, are set in clean groundmass containing sparse silt-sized quartz. Chert and polycrystalline quartz are fairly common in the upper size range, while sparse opaques occur in the entire range and up to 0.6mm. A single siltstone (0.7mm) and rare muscovite mica can also be identified.


Maker’s marks suggest a major source in the Marne-Vesle potteries (Rigby 1989a, 126).


Colchester Museums (earliest forms and fabrics); Ipswich Museum (earliest forms and fabrics); Department of Prehistoric & Romano-British Antiquities, The British Museum (earliest forms and fabrics)


Hawkes, C F C, & Hull, M R, 1947 Camulodunum. First report on the excavations at Colchester 1930–1939, Rep Res Comm Soc Antiq London 14(earliest forms and fabrics)

Rigby, V, 1981 The Gallo-Belgic wares, in Skeleton Green. A late Iron Age and Romano-British site (C Partridge), Britannia Monogr Ser 2, 159–95 (earliest forms and fabrics)

Rigby, V, 1989a Pottery from the Iron Age cemetery, in Verulamium. The King Harry Lane site (I M Stead & V Rigby), Engl Heritage Archaeol Rep 12, 112–210

See the related record on the Atlas of Roman Pottery on the Potsherd website

Plate 8: Fresh sherd break of GAB TR 1B (width of field 24 mm). Click to see a larger version

Plate 8: Fresh sherd break of GAB TR 1B (width of field 24 mm)

Plate 8.1: Photomicrograph of GAB TR 1B (XPL) (width of field 1.74 mm). Click to see a larger version

Plate 8.1: Photomicrograph of GAB TR 1B (XPL) (width of field 1.74 mm)