Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

8/28/2014 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Wooden Roman toilet seat believed to be the only one of its kind

Accustomed to finding priceless coins, artwork and historical artifacts, archaeologists in Great Britain have found an altogether different type of treasure - one that was desperately needed in ancient times - a wooden toilet seat, believed to be 2,000 years old.

Discovered at Vindolanda fort on Hadrian's Wall in Northumberland, the 'object' could have been used by soldiers stationed at the border whose job it was to keep the barbarians at bay.

Discovered at Vindolanda fort on Hadrian's Wall in Northumberland, the "object" could have been used by soldiers stationed at the border whose job it was to keep the barbarians at bay.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

8/28/2014 (1 year ago)

Published in Europe

Keywords: Roman England, toilet seat, Vinolanda


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Perfectly preserved and incredibly rare, the toilet seat is thought to be the only seat of its kind used by the Romans to have survived.

Discovered at Vindolanda fort on Hadrian's Wall in Northumberland, the "object" could have been used by soldiers stationed at the border whose job it was to keep the barbarians at bay.

SAVE Iraqi Christians from Genocide --

Archaeologists used to unearthing treasure such as coins and jewels have discovered a 2,000-year old

Archaeologists used to unearthing treasure such as coins and jewels have discovered a 2,000-year old wooden toilet seat. It is thought to be the only set made of wood that has survived since Roman times.


It was definitely a change of pace for Dr. Andrew Birley, director of excavations at the fort, who has previously dug up gold and silver or artefacts which relate to the military might of the Roman army.

Birley personally made the discovery in a muddy trench which was previously filled with historic rubbish and thinks the wood survived because mud was packed tightly around it, providing oxygen-free conditions.

While there are many examples of stone and marble toilet benches from across the Roman Empire, this is believed to be the only surviving wooden seat. In either case, it was probably preferred to a cold stone material given the chilly northern location shunned by many Roman soldiers.

Dr. Andrew Birley discovered the toilet seat in a muddy trench (pictured) which was previously fille

Dr. Andrew Birley discovered the toilet seat in a muddy trench (pictured) which was previously filled with historic rubbish and thinks the wood survived because mud was packed tightly around it.


Vinolanda was a Roman fort south of Hadrian's Wall in northern England, and guarded the Roman road from the River Tyne to Solway Firth.

Wooden tablets have been discovered there. These finds are considered the most important examples of military and private correspondence found anywhere in the Roman Empire. The garrison was home to auxiliary infantry and cavalry units.

Among the many finds at Vinolanda have been Roman boots, shoes, armors, jewelry, coins and tablets have all been found there.

"There is always great excitement when you find something that has never been seen before and this discovery is wonderful," Birley said.

The toilet seat was discovered at Vindolanda fort (pictured) on Hadrian

The toilet seat was discovered at Vindolanda fort (pictured) on Hadrian's Wall in Northumberland and was likely used by soldiers stationed at the border whose job it was to keep the barbarians at bay.


"We know a lot about Roman toilets from previous excavations at the site and from the wider Roman world which have included many fabulous Roman latrines but never before have we had the pleasure of seeing a surviving and perfectly preserved wooden seat.

"As soon as we started to uncover it there was no doubt at all on what we had found. It is made from a very well worked piece of wood and looks pretty comfortable," Birley adds.

"Now we need to find the toilet that went with it as Roman loos are fascinating places to excavate - their drains often contain astonishing artefacts.

The toilet seat will go on show at the fort's museum once it has been preserved.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copyright 2015 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for February 2016
Universal:
That prisoners, especially the young, may be able to rebuild lives of dignity.
Evangelization: That married people who are separated may find welcome and support in the Christian community.



Comments


More Europe

Pope Francis in hot water? Pontiff receives angry call from German Chancellor Angela Merkel Watch

Image of Pope Francis's remark about Europe and barren women causes Merkel to respond ( L'Osservatore Romano/Getty Images Europe).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

In 2014, Pope Francis delivered an address to European Parliament, in which he spoke of Europe's lack of connection among its people. He claimed the loneliness in the country led to an aging impression, like a grandmother who is no longer fertile. Now, two years later, ... continue reading


SCARY POLL: One in four Germans favors shooting illegal immigrants at borders Watch

Image of A political storm brewed last week after Alternative for Germany - or AFD party leader Frauke Petry [not pictured] advocated the right of border police to gun down migrants.

By Catholic Online (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Growing weary of accommodating refugees from such trouble spots as Syria and Iraq, the German people have expressed a rather shocking sentiment in a recent poll. According to the survey - one in four Germans favors shooting illegal immigrants at their nation's ... continue reading


Seven suspects arrested in Spain for smuggling weapons to ISIS - disguised as humanitarian aid Watch

Image of Eighty-two suspects have been arrested in connection with suspected terrorist activities in Spain since the beginning of 2015.

By Catholic Online (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Seven people have been arrested in Spain and North Africa on suspicion of supplying bomb-making equipment to Islamic State leaders in Syria and Iraq - under the phony pretense of sending humanitarian aid. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Six men were arrested ... continue reading


REVEALED: Pope Pius XII's secret efforts to overthrow Hitler Watch

Image of In the late 1990s, debate over whether Pius XII did enough to counter the Nazis reached a high point with the publication of the deeply controversial book,

By Kevin J. Jones, CNA/EWTN News

Pope Pius XII's secret support for the attempted overthrow of Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler is the subject of a new book that draws on wartime documents and interviews with the American intelligence agent who wrote them. Washington D.C. (CNA/EWTN News) - "This ... continue reading


Germany cannot take in 'all the world's needy,' Catholic Church says Watch

Image of The anti-Islamic group Periga has encouraged fellow Europeans to join them in marches for

By Catholic Online (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Charity has limits, church officials in Germany say. Taking in the majority of the world's Syrian refugees, representatives from the Catholic Church now say that resources are being stretched to the limits, and new refugees must be controlled. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


Remains of St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina, St. Leopold Mandic arrive in Rome for Jubilee of Mercy Watch

Image of The relics of the two saints were welcomed to St. Lawrence with a large celebration and procession into the basilica (CNS/Reuters).

By Elise Harris, CNA/EWTN News

The partially incorrupt body of Padre Pio has arrived to Rome for the first time ever alongside that of another friar, St. Leopold Mandic, as a special initiative for the Jubilee of Mercy. Vatican City (CNA/EWTN News) - Urns containing the relics of Saint Padre ... continue reading


Seeking reconciliation, Pope Francis, and Russian Orthodox leader to meet in Cuba - for first time, ever Watch

Image of The meeting comes after years and decades of previous outreach efforts, which has prevented papal visits to Russia (AFP).

By Catholic Online (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

In the hopes of repairing a schism within Christianity, that dates back as far as the 11th Century, Pope Francis will meet with the leader of the Russian Orthodox Church in Cuba. The two branches have been estranged because of disagreements over papal authority - as ... continue reading


Woman takes toddler to join ISIS Watch

Image of Tareena Shakil took her toddler to Syria to join ISIS (PA).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Twenty-six-year-old Tareena Shakil told her family she would be vacationing in Turkey with her 14-month-old son. The next time her family heard from her, Shakil and her son were in Syria - and had joined the terrorist organization ISIS. LOS ANGELES, CA (California ... continue reading


Evidence of the Yeti? Footprints in Himalayan snow said to be of abominable snowman Watch

Image of Among the most elusive of all crypto-zoological creatures, the Abominable Snowman has had several eyewitness accounts. Some Russian fans here pose with an elaborate mock-up of the snowy creature (Lenta).

By Catholic Online (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The abominable snowman, or Yeti, remains one of the world's most elusive crypto-zoological figures. There have been many eyewitness reports of the hairy giant throughout the mountain ranges of the Himalayas for many years. A British man, on vacation in Bhutan, ... continue reading


'I should never have smiled at him': Nightclub owner bans migrants from club when language barrier leads to sexual harrassment Watch

Image of When women began to report migrants harassing them at his nightclub, Jensen decided to take action (Mads Flackner).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Tom Holden Jensen, the owner of a Danish nightclub, decided to ban all migrants who don't speak Danish, English or German from his Buddy Holly club in S√łenderborg. The controversial decision was made after several women claimed they felt threatened and intimidated by ... continue reading


All Europe News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • Take this thought provoking Stations of the Cross survey
  • 10 important things to consider during Lent
  • St. Scholastica: Saint of the Day for Wednesday, February 10, 2016
  • Palm Sunday HD Video
  • Stations of the Cross - Fourth Station: Jesus meets his mother HD Video
  • Daily Readings for Wednesday, February 10, 2016
  • Can you answer these four challenging questions about Lent?

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Kings 8:22-23, 27-30
22 Then, in the presence of the whole assembly of Israel, Solomon stood ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 84:3, 4, 5, 10, 11
3 Even the sparrow has found a home, the swallow a nest to place its ... Read More

Gospel, Mark 7:1-13
1 The Pharisees and some of the scribes who had come from Jerusalem ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for February 9th, 2016 Image

St. Apollonia
February 9: St. Apollonia, who died in the year 249, was ... Read More