Saturday, September 5, 2020

The National Roman Fabric Reference Collection: a Handbook

The National Roman Fabric Reference Collection: a Handbook

Museum of London Archaeology Service Monograph 2, 1998. First published in Great Britain in 1998 by the Museum of London Archaeology Service.
Roberta Tomber and John Dore, with contributions by John Cooper, Ian Freestone, Sylvia Humphrey and Andrew Middleton, and additional information from Brenda Dickinson, Kay Hartley and Valery Rigby.

Welcome to the on-line version of the National Roman Fabric Reference Collection.
The original project was initiated by English Heritage and was conducted as a collaboration between English Heritage (now Historic England), the Museum of London Specialist Services (now Museum of London Archaeology) and the British Museum. The resulting monograph, Tomber and Dore 1998, The National Roman Fabric Reference Collection: A Handbook, MoLAS Monograph 2, was reprinted in 2002 and is now out of print, but the original text in its entirety, is available on this site. There are a number of small changes between this resource and the printed version, particularly in the thin-section descriptions. In the case of any discrepancies between the two versions, the on-line one should take precedence.
This web site comprises the original macroscopic photographs of fresh sherd breaks that were published in Tomber and Dore 1998. Here they are available at a significantly larger size than was possible to achieve in print and viewed at a width of field of 24 mm. The original photographs and their digitisation was the work of Andy Chopping of Museum of London Archaeology (© Museum of London Archaeology). In addition, the on-line resource has been enhanced by the addition of a thin-section photomicrograph for each fabric. These were taken by Roberta Tomber in the Department of Conservation and Scientific Research (now Department of Scientific Research, © The British Museum) using a Leica DMRX petrological microscope, mostly in cross-polarised light (XPL), although plane-polarised light (PPL) was sometimes used for clarity. In most cases their width of field is 1.74 mm...

Hand specimen picture panel
Thin section picture panel
Appendix 1: Keywords and Definitions
Appendix 2: Physical Layout of Sherds Housed in the NRFRC

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