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Archaeologia Cantiana -  Vol. 84    1969  page 98
Excavations at Eccles Roman Villa, 1968: Seventh Interim Report.
By A. P. Detsicas, M.A., F.S.A. Scot

on the latter; furthermore, it was established that the north-east wall of .Room 86 and its robbed north-west one were part of the original plan. No earlier wall lay beneath the south-east wall of Room 86, as had been earlier suspected;10 the traces of hard foundation material, immediately outside the north corner of this room and considered to belong to a robbed north-east wall of Room 86 projecting slightly beyond the line of the later north-east wall, are now known to belong partly to the north-east wall of Block 79-85, abutted on the north corner of Room 86, and partly to a hard base below the water-pipeline trench outside of and parallel with the north-east wall of Room 86.
   It is now clear, therefore, that the villa in this period had originally been provided with a rear corridor, divided into at least two parts (Rooms 87 and 104; Fig. 2) and extending from the north corner of the villa towards the south-east; this corridor was 11 ft. 6 in. wide, but its total length is not yet known though it extends at least 126 ft., i.e. the total length of the living quarters examined so far. The tessellated portion of this corridor (Room 87; Fig. 2) measures 68 ft. and includes the area of the later Room 86; as it is now known that the south-east wall of this room is not part of the original plan, there is no reason to suppose that the tessellation would not have extended to the north corner of the rear corridor. The remainder of the corridor (Room 104) was floored with yellow mortar11 and extended at least 56 ft. to the south-east; later, it was partitioned into smaller rooms.
   (ii) Block 79-85. The north-east area of .Room 85 was partly re-examined, and a new trench was cut here in order to establish the dimensions of the hearth whose north-west edge was first exposed in 1967.12 The hearth was found to measure 7 ft. 6 in. by not much more than 4 ft. as some undercutting through the south-west face of the trench showed conclusively that the tiles of the hearth did not extend further than shown on the plan (Fig. 1). The hearth (Plate I, B) had been constructed of bonding-tiles laid directly upon yellow clay which had been burnt a brilliant brick-red.18 The area between the north-east edge of this hearth and the north-east wall of the room had been filled with ragstone, bearing traces of mortaring and continuing round the east corner of the hearth for part of its south-east edge; this indicates the possibility of a ragstone surround to the hearth which would also serve to protect the north-east wall of the room from direct contact with fire. Ashes and charcoal filled the whole area of the hearth, and it was observed that this deposit became thicker towards the south-east and beyond the edge of the trench which clearly
  10 Arch. Cant., lxxxiii (1968), 42.
   11 See note 7, above.
   12 Arch. Cant., lxxxiii (1968), 47.
   13 This was also the case in the 1967 trench immediately to north-west; ibid., 47.

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