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Entrenching tool

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from Newstead, Roxburghshire

Entrenching tool
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This iron entrenching tool was found at the site of the Roman fort at Newstead in Roxburghshire. It was used between 80 and 100 AD.

The mattock-like tool has a broad, somewhat tapering blade at one end, and a pointed pick at the other. The handle fitted through the central hole.

Digging tools must have been used as much as weapons by Roman soldiers. On the march, soldiers built temporary ramparts and ditches around their camps. Once an area had been conquered, the army built forts and permanent barracks of wood or stone.

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