Although a variety of reduced wares was produced in the Market Rasen kilns, only the fine grey or ‘Parisian’ ware is included here.
The fabric is deep black, often with well-defined banding of grey-brown (10YR 4/1) or orange-brown (2.5YR 5/6) margins. Surfaces are dark grey to black (4/0–3/0), sometimes with a brownish tinge (10YR 4/1). The fabric is hard with a smooth or conchoidal fracture and a soapy feel. A range of small forms was produced, with the beaker most common. Although the kilns differ slightly in style, three narrow cordons, either above or below the decorated zone on the beaker, is typical, while the stamps are more freely arranged than on Rossington Bridge Fine Reduced ware (Elsdon 1982, 20).
In many samples all that can be seen is a fine micaceous (silver) and silty matrix. Larger inclusions, when they do occur, normally measure between 0.2–0.3mm and comprise common quartz and sparse red-brown and black iron-rich grains. Less frequently, clay pellets occur up to 1.5mm.
The groundmass is composed of well-sorted silt-grade material (common quartz and sparse opaques) set in a matrix with common fine muscovite mica. Sparse grains of quartz and feldspar measure to c 0.3mm, as do rare clay pellets, opaques and flint.
Production of this ware is known from kilns at Chantry’s Field, with wasters present at Austins, Highfield House Paddock. A third possible production site at Gordon Fields, the source of our sherds, remains to be confirmed (M Darling, pers comm).
Lincoln City and County Museum
Lincoln City and County Museum; Scunthorpe Museum and Art Gallery
Elsdon, S M, 1982 Parisian ware: a study of the stamped wares of the Roman period in Lincolnshire, Humberside and south Yorkshire, VORDA Res Ser 4
Rigby, V, & Stead, I, 1976b Parisian ware, in Excavations at Winterton Roman villa and other Roman sites in north Lincolnshire, 1958–1967 (I Stead), 181–9