Lanchester Diploma: First complete Fleet Diploma
North East | County Durham
Thu 20th Jul 2017
Lanchester Diploma: First complete Fleet Diploma
Periods: Romans
Talk or lecture

Join the Museum of Archaeology Durham University for this year’s Festival of British Archaeology as we celebrate a new and important addition to the display.

Found in 2016 by metal detectorist Mark Houston near Lanchester, Co. Durham, and recorded through the Portable Antiquities Scheme this is the first complete Fleet Diploma to be discovered in the country and reveals the identity one of Britain’s first named sailor. The diploma is made of a copper alloy and is now broken into 8 fragments, although it would have originally consisted of 2 rectangular bronze plates which were attached together with metal wires.

Roman military or fleet diplomas were the physical proof of rights granted to non-citizen soldiers on retirement from service. This diploma was issued by the emperor Antoninus Pius (AD 138-191) to Tigernos, a native of Lanchester, Co. Durham, in around AD 150. The diploma granted him and his descendant’s Roman citizenship and the legal right of marriage. To earn the diploma he had served in the Classis Germanica -the Roman fleet in Germany, most likely for 26 years, before being honourably discharged on his retirement.

On the 20th of July the Lanchester Diploma will be displayed for the first time, so join us for a series of short talks exploring how this remarkable object made its journey from Lanchester 2000 years ago to the Museum of Archaeology today and discover why it such a significant find for the region.

Dig Deeper with the Lanchester Diploma, with talks from Dr Roger Tomlin (Oxford University), Dr David Mason (Durham County Council), Mark Houston (Finder), Ellie Cox (Portable Antiques Scheme), Gemma Lewis (Durham University)

The talks with explore the discovery, translation, research, conservation and significance of the diploma not only for local area but also for Roman Britain in general.

Event details

Organiser: Durham University
Booking details: If you would like to attend please email
Fee details: This event is free to attend

Dates and times

Thu 20th Jul 2017 15:00-17:30

Venues and locations

Museum of Archaeology
Palace Green Library

Tel: 0191 334 2932
Directions: Palace Green Library is a five minute walk from Durham Market Place in the city centre. From the Market Place, turn on to Saddler Street and follow the road upwards. Turn onto Owengate, which is the first street on your right. Owengate leads onto Palace Green, the Durham UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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