This is an umbrella term for a wide variety of reduced wares produced throughout northern Gaul.
Typically this is a light to pale grey (8/0-6/0) fabric with a darker grey (4/0) surface. It is hard with an irregular fracture and a rough feel, where unburnished. In Britain the ware is best represented by hook-rim jars, bowls and dishes, which are frequently burnished (bandes lustrées) to a metallic sheen in thin bands on different points for the different vessel types. Although some pentice beakers are described as being reduced (Richardson 1986, 107), no examples are included here. Our samples include decorated sherds as well as coarser unburnished vessels.
The fabric is characterised by a clean clay matrix containing common to abundant ill- to well-sorted quartz, generally 0.2mm but up to 0.9mm in size. Less frequent, sometimes sparse but still typical, are black iron-rich grains in a similar size range, and sparse dark grey and white clay pellets c 1.0mm.
This sample contains common well-sorted rounded to angular quartz (rarely polycrystalline), measuring c 0.1–0.2mm, set in a clean groundmass with sparse silt-sized quartz. Other inclusions are sparse opaques, and rare chert and feldspar, also measuring to c 0.2mm. Clay pellets, opaques and black-rimmed voids occur up to 0.7mm.
Kilns producing these wares are known from La Calotterie and Labuissière, although it seems likely, from the quantity and variety in fabric, that a greater number were in operation (Bourgeois 1972, Couppé 1977).
Museum of London
Department of Greek & Roman Antiquities, The British Museum; Museum of London; Richborough Castle
Bourgeois, A, 1972 L’officine de potiers de Labuissière, rapport préliminaire, Bulletin de la Commission Départementale des Monuments Historiques du Pas-de-Calais 9, 102–16
Couppé, J, Tuffreau-Libre, M, & Vincent, F, 1977 L’officine gallo-romaine de la Calotterie, Revue du Nord 59, 501–39
Richardson, B, 1986 The waterfront group: coarsewares and non-samian finewares, in The Roman quay at St Magnus House, London. Excavations at New Fresh Wharf, Lower Thames Street, London 1974–1978 (L Miller, J Schofield & M Rhodes), London Middlesex Archaeol Soc Spec Pap 8, 106–38
Richardson, B, & Tyers, P A, 1984 North Gaulish pottery in Britain, Britannia 15, 133–41
Tuffreau-Libre, M, 1980 La céramique commune gallo-romaine dans le nord de la France (Nord, Pas-de-Calais), Lille
Tuffreau-Libre, M, & Jacques, A (eds), 1994a La céramique du Bas Empire en Gaule belgique et dans les regions voisines. Actes de la table ronde de céramologie gallo-romaine Arras, 8–10 octobre 1991, Hors Série, Collection Archéologie 4, Lille
Tuffreau-Libre, M, & Jacques, A (eds), 1994b La céramique du Haut Empire en Gaule belgique et dans les régions voisines: faciès régionaux et courants commerciaux. Actes de la table ronde d’Arras (12 au 14 octobre 1993), Nord-Ouest Archéologie 6, Berck-sur-Mer