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Archaeologia Cantiana -  Vol. 79    1964  pages 123

Excavations at Eccles, 1963: Second Interim Report.
By A. P. Detsicas, M.A., F.S.A. Scot

time when it would seem clear that some of the rooms were reconstructed (Plate II).
   The construction of this secondary furnace necessitated breaching the wall of the laconicum. The new flue had cheeks 1 ft. thick, built entirely of bonding-tiles set in a bright yellow mortar, which appeared a little darker than its original colour due to burning; both cheeks were very reddened by fire and in a very brittle condition. The floor of the flue was constructed of roofing-tiles, which were laid directly on the subsoil outside the laconicum and projected slightly on to the room's floor; these roofing-tiles were covered with a thick deposit of soot and ash, in which were found pieces of charcoal and mineral coal, with much pottery and domestic refuse extending on to the floor of the laconicum beyond the mouth of the flue. The external walls of the stokehole were 2 ft. thick, of ragstone set in bright yellow mortar; the south-west wall of the furnace was built directly against the north-east wall of the bath building. The space between the south-west external wall and the south-west cheek of the flue contained much accumulated soot and ash as well as much domestic refuse.
   Circular baths such as Room 32 are normally a feature of military establishments,3 whose laconica have independent furnaces and are entered directly from their frigidaria; these are usually dated from the Flavian period to the middle of the second century A.D. Town baths, too were equipped with circular laconica or sudatoria,4 but there seem to be very few parallels for such circular baths in villa sites.
   Grenier,5 in discussing the Rouhling villa,6 refers also to the villas at Friesdorf,7 Wiltingen8 and Bubenheim;9 the Rouhling laconicum does not project beyond the line of the bath building, but is incorporated within it. The only close parallel to Room 32 in a British villa would seem to be at the Ashtead villa,10 which had a circular laconicum offset at one end of the bath block, but of smaller diameter (10 ft.) than Room 32.
   The area immediately to the south-west of Room 32 has not yet
   3 For a general discussion, see M. C. Fair, Circular Bath Buildings in Connection with Cohort Forts, in J.R.S., xvii (1927), 220 ff., with fifteen British and German military parallels; also, C. M. Daniels, The Roman Bath House at Red House, Beaufort, near Corbridge, in AA4, xxxvii (1959), 85-176.
   4 E.g. the Roman baths at Bath, Archaeologia, lxxv (1926), 1-18, and at Wroxeter, D. Atkinson, Report on Excavations at Wroxeter, 1923-1927.
5 A. Grenier, Habitations gauloises et Villas latines dans la Cite des Mediomatrices, Paris, 1906.1 owe this reference to Professor Sir Ian Richmond, P.S.A.
   6 Op tit., 129.
   7 Bonner Jahrbucher 81, 212.
   8 Jahresbericht des Qesellschaft fur nutzliolie Forschungen, Trier, 1856, 61 ff.
   9  Bonner Jahrbucher
72, 126.
   10 A, W. G. Lowther, Excavations at Ashtead, Surrey, Third Report (1929), in Surrey Arch. Coll., xxxviii (pt. II), 132-48.1 owe the original reference to Lt.-Col. G. W. Meates, F.S.A.

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