Archaeologists in Cumbria have unearthed what they say is the
finest collection of Roman armour to have been found in Britain
The discovery was made at the site of a Roman fort in Carlisle
(known to the Romans as Luguvalium, a possible British settlement
from which they created a military town),
in the water-logged remains of what is thought to have been the
Because the ground was so wet bits of leather and cloth to which
the individual bits of armour were attached have also survived,
which is very rare.
The items are currently awaiting conservation in a deep freeze
at the University of Durham.
X-rays by experts have revealed what is believed to be a unique
piece of armour made of strips of iron held together with bronze
The haul also includes a pile of arm guards made of metal plates
sewn onto leather. They covered the sword arm from shoulder to hand
and were modelled on gladiators' equipment.
Thom Richardson of the Royal Armouries museum in Leeds said the
find was "unparalleled" and suggested second century legionnaires
wore much more varied armour than traditional images show.