Date Made/Found: 80-400 AD
Material and Medium: Lead
Dimensions: Diameter 45mm, height 27mm
Place Object Found:
Accession Number: 1997.40.4.BR81.73
These two weights were found near the Roman fort at Brough in 1981. They were found in the civilian town or vicus next to the fort.
The presence of weights in the vicus suggests there were traders or merchants living here. The Roman soldiers provided a good market for all kinds of consumer goods. Traders needed an accurate set of weights to weigh items they were selling or buying. They also needed to weigh coins to check they were real. Fake coins often weigh less than real ones.
The Romans used a system of weights with pounds and ounces. There are 12 ounces in both the Roman and English pound but the actual weights are slightly different. The marks on the top of each weight show the value. The weight on the left has a roughly rectangular mark on it. This is the usual mark for a libra or a pound. The smaller weight has five small circular marks on it. This is the usual mark for five uncia or ounces. Roman pounds and ounces weighed slightly less than the modern English equivalents.
Weston Park Museum