Wednesday, August 4, 2010

River Thames gives up its secrets at The Tower

A RARE find has been uncovered from the shores of the River Thames near the Tower of London.

The clay medieval roof finial or decoration was discovered last week by a mudlark, who was helping survey the foreshore of the river by the Tower of London.

It gives an insight into the building materials used in London by our twelfth and thirteenth century forefathers.

The roof finial is worn and in shape of an animal and would have been used to embellish the ridges of tiled roof buildings in London and other large towns.

Experts at the Museum of London think it was made around Woolwich and brought to the city with other pots and roof tiles.

The head of archaeology and archives Roy Stephenson said: "This find is relatively rare in the collections of the Museum of London. It gives a fascinating insight into the lost roofscape of medieval London, which we know relatively little about. Some of the more common place roofs would have been thatched. But here we have evidence of a decorated tiled roof, possibly from a prestigious private building."

It will now be cleaned as archaeologists learn more about medieval building in the city.

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