Thursday, 5 May 2011

Fishbourne Palace

At the weekend I visited Fishbourne Roman Palace.  It has a great collection of Roman mosaic floors in various states of repair.  The palace was discovered when a water main trench was being dug in 1960.  The mosaic floor below is the most complete that was found and is dated as being laid in the mid-second century. 

I was very impressed by examples of the Roman underfloor heating.  I tend to think that we are very civilised and advanced today, but the fact that the Romans had underfloor heating puts that view into a bit of perspective.

I couldn't help being reminded of quilt blocks by some of the mosaics.

The gardens were lovely too.  There was a large Mediterranean-style formal garden with clipped box hedging, like a parterre.  This had been re-planted to it's original plan as recovered by excavation.

My favourite part of the garden was the herb garden.  Here there was selection of culinary and medicinal herbs representing some of the plants the Romans would have cultivated.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, these are just fantastic photos, Erica. How amazing that the tiles have been preserved so well, after so many centuries. I was just fascinated by the Roman section of the British Museum, when I was there a few years ago. I spend a good deal of my museum-time in that section.

    I am also fascinated by these formal gardens. Thanks for sharing the photos.


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