Salsovia: Chronological Landmarks  Cover Image

Salsovia: Chronological Landmarks
Salsovia: Chronological Landmarks

Author(s): Ian Haynes, Doru Bogdan, Florin Topoleanu
Subject(s): Archaeology
Published by: Institutul de Cercetari Eco-Muzeale Tulcea - Institutul de Istorie si Arheologie
Keywords: Salsovia; Mahmudia: Legio I Iovia; Legio I Italica; stamped decoration; lamps. Cuvinte cheie: Salsovia; Mahmudia; Legiunea I Iovia; Legiunea I Italica; decot imprimat; opaiţe

Summary/Abstract: This paper presents lamps and selected vessels from Mahmudia. The pieces discussed come both from recent excavations at the site of Salsovia and from a collection held by the village school. The paper begins with a discussion of the written evidence for the site of Salsovia, before offering a brief summary of the archaeological investigation of Late Roman activity at the site. The citadel on the promontory west of Mahmudia, Tulcea County was known in the Roman period as Salsovia. Prior to 2004, the site had not been the focus of systematic fieldwork; all knowledge of its history came from ancient sources and chance finds. Among the latter, the most important role was played by the inscriptions, which have been published on several occasions, very often with contradictory interpretations. One theory based on a particular interpretation of the epigraphic sources was that of Vasile Pârvan, according to which Salsovia was abandoned after the defeat of Emperor Valens at Adrianopole. This paper, briefly discusses evidence from the 2004 and 2007 excavation seasons and reviews published epigraphic evidence from the site and its vicinity. The latter includes a military diploma from A.D. 97, three further inscriptions dated between the 2nd and 4thcenturies AD, and a tile with a funerary text from the 5th or 6th century. Several ceramic finds and coins from the local school collection were also published in the past. Project funding from the British Academy and Ivy Primrose allowed three stages of the research to be completed, in 2003, 2004 (two seasons) and 2007. Institutul de Cercetări Eco-Muzeale provided research support, laboratory space and storage facilities. The first stage of the project was the topographic survey of the site, including both the citadel and and the wider settlement, undertaken in 2003. This work provided the necessary framework for finds collection and both magnetometry and resitivity surveys. The 2004 and 2007 excavation seasons witnessed the opening of four trenches, two inside the citadel and two on the extra mural area to the west. Despite the fact that most of the surface of the site was badly damaged by previous disturbance, several buildings and a segment of the city defensive wall were identified. The upper levels investigated at Salsovia are clearly dated by the finds in the 4th-6th centuries, invalidating the theory that claimed that the site was abandoned after the Adrianopole disaster. All of the archaeological finds published in this article: tableware, stamped decoration ceramic, cooking ware and lamps are of Late Roman date. Coins from the Mahmudia school collection are published here as well. Archaeological investigation thus enabled the team to address a range of issues that had previously only been the subject of scholarly hypotheses, such as the extent and character of the late defences and absence of evidence for settlement on the site after the 6thcentury. The evidence suggests the abandonment of the site

  • Issue Year: X/2012
  • Issue No: 10
  • Page Range: 101-144
  • Page Count: 44
  • Language: English