Most Roman pottery, however, consisted of coarse sandy greywares which were used for cooking, storage and other daily functions.
By the early 5th century, the art of pottery manufacture with a wheel had been lost (or was simply not required) in Britain.
The study of pottery is an important branch of archaeology.
This is because pottery is: Small fragments of pottery, known as sherds or potsherds, are collected on most archaeological sites.
In Britain, pottery was made from the Neolithic (New Stone Age) period onwards, although some parts of the British Isles were aceramic (did not produce pottery) at various points in time. This crudeness is related to the function of the vessels, which had to withstand thermal shock when placed on a fire for cooking.
Fine vessels with incised and stamped decoration were also made. C., wheelmade pottery was being imported from the Roman world and finer 'Belgic-type' vessels were being produced in East Anglia.
The following is a basic introduction to pottery in archaeology, focusing particularly on the ceramics of the medieval period.
The bibliography at the end provides references to more detailed and comprehensive sources.
Plain cooking vessels and decorated 'urns' were again common.Highly decorated tableware, including fine red and whitewares, were available during the Early Roman period.Imported wares, such as fine red samian from Gaul, were popular, and wheelmade pottery was manufactured in Britain.The similarity between Iron Age and Saxon pottery, particularly in East Anglia, can cause problems where no other dating evidence is available.
Occasionally whole vessels are found, particularly where they have been used as grave goods or cremation 'urns'.
These are important in providing us with a type series of vessel forms, although broken vessels can be just as useful for this. The clay from which it is made often contains pieces of burnt flint or other stone and the pottery appears very coarse.