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The National Roman Fabric Reference Collection: a Handbook

Hand specimen picture panel
Thin section picture panel

References

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

 

Pisa, Italian sigillata (PIS SA)

Two samples

General appearance

These samples are typically pale pink-brown (2.5YR 6/6, 5YR 7/4) with glossy red-brown (10R 4/6) slip. They are very hard with smooth surfaces and smooth fracture.

Hand specimen

The fabric is characterised by a fine calcareous clay, containing abundant limestone inclusions, sometimes appearing as streaks. The limestone varies somewhat between samples and may be well or ill sorted: normally it measures <0.2mm, although occasionally grains up to 0.4mm are present. Other visible inclusions are sparse, and include red, brown or red-brown iron-rich inclusions, quartz and rarely visible fine silver mica.

Thin section

This is an exceptionally fine calcareous clay containing common muscovite and brown mica, and rare silt-sized quartz. Limestone is abundant, but is not normally visible as discrete inclusions. Larger grains are virtually absent, but quartz and opaques to c 0.1–0.3mm are present.

Source

L. Rasinius (x2)

Donor

Museum of London

Museums

(for Italian sigillata in general) Colchester Museums; Hertford Museum; Departments of Greek & Roman Antiquities and Prehistoric & Romano-British Antiquities, The British Museum; Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

References

Bird, J, 1995a The samian and other imported red-slipped fine wares, in Excavations in the Marlowe Car Park and surrounding areas. Part 2: the finds (K Blockley, M Blockley, P Blockley, S Frere & S Stow), The archaeology of Canterbury 5, 772–97

Ettlinger, E, 1990 Die italische Produktion 1. Die klassische Zeit: Pisa und das Ateius-Problem, in Conspectus Formarum Terrae Sigillatae Italico Modo Confectae (E Ettlinger et al), Materialien zur Römisch-Germanischen Keramik Heft 10, 7–8, Bonn

Hartley, B R, 1988 The arretine, in Puckeridge-Braughing, Hertfordshire: the Ermine Street excavations 1971–72 (T W Potter & S D Trow), Hertfordshire Archaeol 10, 94–6

Kenrick, P M, 1993 Potters’ stamps on Italian terra sigillata: towards a new catalogue, J Roman Pottery Stud 6, 27–35

Williams, D F, 1988a Petrological examinations of the arretine ware, in Puckeridge-Braughing, Hertfordshire: the Ermine Street excavations 1971–72 (T W Potter & S D Trow), Hertfordshire Archaeol 10, 96

Williams, D F, & Dannell, G B, 1978 Petrological analysis of arretine and early samian: a preliminary report, in Early fine wares in Roman Britain (eds P Arthur & G Marsh), BAR 57, 5–13

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

Plate 16: Fresh sherd break of PIS SA (width of field 24 mm). Click to see a larger version

Plate 16: Fresh sherd break of PIS SA (width of field 24 mm)

Plate 16.1: Photomicrograph of PIS SA (XPL) (width of field 1.74 mm). Click to see a larger version

Plate 16.1: Photomicrograph of PIS SA (XPL) (width of field 1.74 mm)