April 30, 2021

Darganfod-Discovery 2021: Dr Alice Forward

Dr Alice Forward of Allen Archaeology on ‘Lordship and communality in the 13th century. Four ram aquamaniles from South Glamorgan’.

Over the past 35 years a group of ram aquamaniles has been discovered on four manorial sites in South Glamorgan, Wales. Aquamaniles are generally found in association with manorial and ecclesiastical settlements and are zoomorphic in form with rams, lions, and horse and riders being the most common types. The date for these objects, 13th century, is relatively narrow in comparison to other medieval ceramic forms. Whilst not unusual vessels, they are not always part of a region’s ceramic repertoire.

This presentation looks at the context for each of the four south Glamorgan rams, taking into consideration the local ceramic tradition and the details of their discovery. The aquamaniles are used to explore potential relationships that may have existed between the four manorial estates; in particular, the social and political relationships that would have been manifested through the 12th and 13th centuries following the Norman Conquest.