Back to Results

< Previous   Next >


The following research contributes to a broad agenda in the archaeology and history of the Roman military to view the army as a social group of individuals rather than a cog in the machine of imperial expansion. Specifically, this work incorporates the evidence for women and children associated with the Roman army in order to illuminate the social structure of military communities. The primary case study is the auxiliary units stationed on the frontiers of the western provinces in the first and second centuries AD before soldiers were legally allowed to cohabit with women during their period of service. This research identifies the families of soldiers as a significant element of Roman military communities and as an important aspect of life in the army. My primary evidence is the archaeological assemblage of leather footwear from Vindolanda, an important military fort on the Roman frontier in Britain. This unique site is contextualized into the broader military landscape by comparison to material from other forts in Britain and Germany, which provides unambiguous evidence for the presence of women and children within military spaces during the earliest periods of military conquest and consolidation in the first century AD.