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Historic England Research Records

Calcaria Roman Town

Hob Uid: 54930
Location :
North Yorkshire
Selby
Tadcaster
Grid Ref : SE4862042820
Summary : Tadcaster is the probable site of the Roman small town known as Calcaria. There are no visible remains, only finds and burials having been recorded.
More information : SE 4860 4290. Roman town of Tadcaster. (Calcaria). (1)

Shown as a minor settlement and Roman name accepted. (2)

The identification of Tadcaster as the Roman Calcaria depends on three factors:- Its distance, 10 Roman miles from York in the
direction of Manchester, agrees with the Antonine Itinerary distance of 9 miles (3). (3-3a)

The place-name -Tada, 1066, and various forms of Tate-, Tata-, Tad-, castre or caster from 1086 onwards. The 1066 form is probably an abbreviation and the name is accepted as a CEASTER name with a DA personal name prefix. The Roman Calcaria (used by Bede, c.730) means`limestone' (there were Medieval quarries for the stone at Tadcaster which was also a river-port for despatching stone to York). (4)

Speight mentions that single Roman coins, but no hoards, have been found particularly in digging graves in the churchyard. One of
Tacitus was in the vicar's possession and others from Hadrian to
Constantine in the possession of J Varley, found near the church and Castle Hill and about the Appelgarth. Several burials have been found at different places in the town. Speight also describes
supposed Roman pottery vessels found in the river in 1893-1901 but they appear to have been Medieval. He refers to Roman coins, urns, pottery, etc. as being found on Castle Hill (see SE 44 SE/6, and also see SE 44 SE/8 and 10). (5)

The archaeological evidence from Camden refers to Roman coins being frequently dug up and mentions traces of surrounding ditches with the site of an old castle. This latter probably refers to the motte and bailey (see SE 44 SE/6) frequently mis-identified as part of the Roman earthworks (see SE 44 SE/16). (6)

No evidence of Roman earthworks was seen in Tadcaster. A small museum in the town exhibits 21 Roman coins, ranging from A.D. 218-392, found in the vicinity of Castle Hill and the church, and several Roman potsherds dredged at various times from the river. A number of local place-names - `Roman Moat', at SE 4866 310, `Camp Close' at SE 484 429, presumably reflect recent popular antiquarian interest. (7)

Name `CALCARIA' accepted for 4th edition Romano-British Map. (8)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Ordnance Survey Map (Scale / Date)
Source details : OS 6" map, 1958
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Source Number : 2
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : OS Map of Roman Britain, 1956
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Source Number : 3
Source : Oral information, correspondence (not archived) or staff comments
Source details : Recorder, ALFR, 29-OCT-1953
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Source Number : 3a
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Itinerary Antonine, 468, 5
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Source Number : 4
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : English Place Name Society, 1961, vol 33, Place Names of Yorkshire, West Riding, part 4, p 76-77 (A H Smith)
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Source Number : 5
Source : Lower Wharfedale, being a complete antiquties and scenery of the picturesque valley of the Wharfe from Cawood to Arthington
Source details :
Page(s) : 229
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Source Number : 6
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Britannia, 1789, vol III, p 8 (Camden, edited by Gough)
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Source Number : 7
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : Field Investigator, ECW, 24-JUN-1963
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Source Number : 8
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Place Names of Roman Britain, 1979 p 289 (ALF Rivet and C Smith)
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Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Roman
Display Date : Roman
Monument End Date : 410
Monument Start Date : 43
Monument Type : Town
Evidence : Documentary Evidence

Components and Objects:
Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : SE 44 SE 7
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Associated Monuments : 1030591
Relationship type : Is referred to by

Related Activities :
Associated Activities : FIELD OBSERVATION ON SE 44 SE 7
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1963-06-24
End Date : 1963-06-24
Associated Activities : FIELD OBSERVATION ON SE 44 SE 7
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1963-10-24
End Date : 1963-10-24
Associated Activities : THE OLD FLEECE, WESTGATE
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1985-01-01
End Date : 1985-12-31