by the north-west wall of Room 48 and extending some way
towards the north-west would support this, but demolition in
the later reconstruction has not allowed this to be
established beyond doubt. The corridor was floored with a
layer of hard white mortar, varying in thickness from 2 to 4
inches; its full length is not yet known as its north-west
wall lay beyond the excavated area.
Room 48 (6 by 6 feet) was intended, in the original
design of the bath-building, to function as the furnace-room
serving the large laconicum (Room 32); it was floored
with bridging-tiles, which were laid directly on the subsoil
and projected into the flue to form the latter's floor as far
as the under-floor of the hypocaust in the laconicum (Fig.
3, Section A-B, Layer 31). This floor soon perished, however,
and the furnace-room was re-floored with opus signinum, which
varied in thickness from 1 to 4 inches (Fig.
3, Section A-B,
Layer 28) and was laid down over some debris layers (Fig.
Section A-B, Layers 29 and 30) resulting from the wearing of
the flue and also from a partial reconstruction of the flue
towards the east in order both to shorten its rather extended
length and to avoid the excessive loss of heat supplied by the
furnace; no direct evidence for such a reconstruction was
found, but that this must be the case is inferred from the
complete absence of any cheeks at the higher level in the
exposed section. No entrance into Room 48 was found (cf. Room
46, below), and all its enclosing walls were undoubtedly of
the same construction and showed no signs of any entrance
blocked in a later reconstruction; the logical position for
such an entrance would be where shown in the plan (Fig. 2),
through the south-west wall of the room, which would allow the
furnace to be tended from the open courtyard to the
south-west. The area to the south-west of Room 48 was
completely exposed to the subsoil, but no evidence was found
either of walls, or even construction trenches, to suggest
that Room 48 may have projected into the courtyard. There is
also the slight possibility, already mentioned in connection
with Room 47, that an entrance into Room 48 may have been
sited in its north-west wall rather than in its south-west
wall. The surprising feature, however, of this room is its
small size; for, even if allowance is made for an extension
some 2 feet to the north-east at the time of the shortening of
the flue into the laconicum and laying down of its opus
signinum floor, an area of 8 feet by 6 feet is scarcely a
sufficiently large space for the furnace of a laconicum the
size of Room 32, a fact which appears even more surprising
when one considers the design of the bath building as a whole.
In the event, it was found necessary to build, in Phase B?
a new and larger furnace-room, Room 50, beyond the
north-west wall of Rooms 47 and 48.
Room 49 measured 13 feet 6 inches by 8 feet and was
floored with a layer of hard yellow mortar to a thickness of
some 3 inches (Fig. 3,