Trimontium (Newstead)

Trimontium is the name of a Roman fort at Newstead, near Melrose, Borders, Scotland, close under the three Eildon Hills (whence the name "trium montium"). It was an advance post of the Romans towards Scotland both about 80 and after, and again, after an interval of retreat from the hostile Caledonians, from about 140 to 180. Excavations by James Curle between February 1905 and September 1910 yielded finds of great importance. These include the foundations of several successive forts, one above the other, which throw much light on the character of the Roman military post; an unparalleled collection of Roman armour, including ornate cavalry parade (or 'sports') helmets, horse fittings including bronze saddleplates and studded leather chamfrons, a good series of Roman coins and datable pottery. The whole illustrate the history of the Roman army and that of the Roman military occupation in southern Scotland very remarkably. The cavalry unit stationed at Trimontium, "ala Augustae Vocontiorum" had been raised among the Vocontii of southern Gaul.

Between 1989 and 1993, further excavations were carried out by the Department of Archaeological Sciences at the University of Bradford.

Many finds from Trimontium are on display at the Museum of Scotland, Chambers St., Edinburgh. There is also a museum run by the Trimontium Trust at Melrose.


*Curle, J., 1911, "A Roman Frontier Post and its People: The Fort of Newstead in the Parish of Melrose". Glasgow: James Maclehose and Sons.

External links

* [ The Newstead Project]
* [ Curle's Newstead online]
* [ Trimontum at]

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