Harness buckle

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from Newstead, Roxburghshire

Postcard of Harness buckle.
© National Museums Scotland

Harness buckle

This enamelled bronze harness buckle was found at the site of the Roman fort at Newstead in Roxburghshire. It formed part of the harness equipment of a member of the auxiliary cavalry, probably for ceremonial use.

One corner of the rectangular plate is missing. The central part of the buckle is ornamented with millefiori enamel (where rods of glass are placed side by side, and then sliced thin). Around this are cells of yellow enamel, powdered with spots of brown.

Excavations at Newstead have revealed much about the layout, daily life and equipment in Roman camps in Scotland. The cavalry had special equipment for tournaments and ceremonies, to impress visitors and build morale.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-100-037-206-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0098: National Museums Scotland
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  X.FRA 846
Date: Between 80 and 180 AD
Material: Enamelled
What: Buckle plate
Who: Newstead Collection
Where: Scotland, Roxburghshire, Melrose, Newstead
Description: Enamelled buckle plate from Newstead
  • Curle, J. A Roman frontier post and its people: the fort of Newstead. Glasgow: MacLehose, 1911, pp 329, 332, Pl. LXXXIX, 25. 
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