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Food Finds in Britain

Archeological Botanical Food Finds in Britain
Catalogued by Jennifer Baker - Hodegon NVG - Dec 2008
Source Reference - Archaeobotanical Computer Database (ABCD ) http://intarch.ac.uk/journal/issue1/tomlinson/scripts/index-latin.htm l
 
note : Listed here are only the foods that have been found - I have not listed those not found :-)


Vegetables
English Names /  Type /  Latin Name /  Period of Archeological finds in Britain

Asparagus Vegetable Asparagus officinalis Iron Age/Roman/

Beetroot Vegetable Chenopodiaceae Bronze Age - Iron Age - Romano-British - Saxon - Anglo - Scand - medieval to 19th c.

Cabbage Vegetable Brassica oleracea (cabbage) cf. only Roman - Anglo-Scandinavianl - pre-Conquest - medieval

Carrot / Wild Carrot Vegetable Daucus carota ssp. sativus Iron Age - Roman-Anglo-Scand-medieval

Celery / Wild Celery Vegetable Apium graveolens var. dulce Iron Age - Roman-Anglo-Scand-medieval

Cornsalad Vegetable Valerianella locusta Roman-Anglo-Scand-medieval

Cucumber Vegetable Cucumis sativus Roman

Faba Bean / Field Bean Vegetable Vicia faba Upper Palaeolithic to late Roman - Saxon -Anglo-Scand-medieval -post med 15th-17th c
Florence Fennel / Miller Fennel Vegetable Foeniculum vulgare Iron Age - Roman-Anglo-medieval

Garlic Vegetable Allium sativum Anglian-medieval

Leek Vegetable Allium ampeloprasum var. porrum Roman-Anglo-Scand-medieval

Lentil / Medicus Lentil Vegetable Lens culinaris (Neolithic) Iron Age - Bronze Age - Roman - Saxon - AS - medieval

Lettuce Vegetable Lactuca sp. Roman

Marrow Vegetable Cucurbita pepo conv. giromontina English Civil War

Parsley / Garden Parsley Vegetable Petroselinum crispum var. crispum Roman - medieval - post-Medieval

Parsnip / Wild Parsnip Vegetable Pastinaca sativa Mesolithic-Neolithic-late Bronze Age - Iron Age - Roman-Anglo-Scand-medieval

Pea / Garden Pea / Field Pea Vegetable Pisum sativum Upper Palaeolithic to late Roman - Saxon - Anglo-Scand-medieval -post med 15th-17th c

Radish Vegetable Raphanus sativus Mesolithic and medieval-early post med

Rorippa Vegetable Rorippa sp Mesolithic-Neolithic-late Bronze Age - Roman- Anglo -late Saxon - 13th c

Swedish Turnip / Rape / Cole / Swede Vegetable Brassica napus Anglo-Scand

Turnip Vegetable Brassica rapa var. rapa Iron Age - Anglo-Scand
Water Cress Vegetable Rorippa nasturtium-aquaticum IronAge - Romano-British - Roman - late Saxon

Wild Cabbage Vegetable Brassica oleracea Roman/Anglo-Scandinavian/medieval



Herbs

English Names /  Herb / Latin Name / Period of Archeological finds in Britain

Alexanders (Smyrnium olusatrum) Roman / early medieval

Angelica Herb Angelica sylvestris Roman – Anglo –Scandinavia – medieval

Betony / Trevisan Betony Herb Stachys officinalis medieval ?c. 1275-18th c

Bulrush / Cat's Tail / Reedmace (Typha Latifolia) Iron Age - medieval / post-medieval

Bog-rosemary Herb Andromeda polifolia Roman-Anglo-Scand-medieval

Borage Herb Borago officinalis Roman / post-Medieval

Brooklime (Veronica Beccabunga) roman late 2nd - mid 3rd c AD / Roman-AS-medieval

Burdock (Arctium minus and A. lappa) Compositae / Asteraceae, Lesser Burdock ( Arctium minus agg.) Mesolithic-Neolithic-late Bronze Age / Iron Age - medieval

Great Burdock ( Arctium lappa L.) Mesolithic-Neolithic-late Bronze Age / Iron Age and Roman/ Anglian-medieval / 16th c

Calendula / Pot Marigold Herb Calendula officinalis Roman-Anglo-Scand-medieval – Saxon and medieval 10th-early 13th –English Civil War

Catnip / Cat-Mint Herb Nepeta cataria Bronze Age/Iron Age/Romano-British – Roman-Anglo-Scand-medieval

Chamomile, German Herb Matricaria recutita medieval

Chamomile, Roman Herb Chamaemelum nobile early medieval

Chickweed (Stellaria media) Mesolithic-Neolithic - Bronze Age -/ Iron Age/Romano-British/ Saxon /Anglo-Scand-medieval/ medieval / post medieval

 

Cleavers / goosegrass / Sticky willie (Galium aparine) Neolithic / Bronze Age / iron Age / Romano-British / middle Saxon / late Saxon / Anglo-Saxon / Anglo-Scand- / medieval / late 14th - early 15th

Comfrey Herb Symphytum officinale Roman-Anglo-Scand-medieval

Coriander / Cilantro Herb Coriandrum sativum Bronze Age/Iron Age/Romano-British – Roman-Anglo-Scand-medieval – English Civil War

Corn Chamomile Herb Anthemis cf. arvensis Upper Palaeolithic to late Roman – early medieval

Corn Mint Herb Mentha cf. arvensis Mesolithic-Neolithic-late Bronze Age – Roman – early medieval

Cow parsley (Anthriscus sylvestris) Bronze Age/Iron Age/Romano-British / roman-AS-medieval /Roman-Anglo-Scand-medieval / medieval 13th-16th

 

Cuckoo flower / lady's smock (Cardamine pratensis) Iron Age and Roman / medieval

Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale ) Roman c5AD-c450AD / early medieval / medieval-post med 15th-17th c

Common Dandelion ( Taraxacum officinale agg.) Late neolithic/Beaker / Roman/Anglo-Scandinavian/medieval / Anglo-Saxon/Early medieval / 15...00-1600

Dill Herb Anethum graveolens Iron Age-Roman-Anglo-Scand- Saxon – medieval – post medieval – English Civil War

Fennel Sweet / Miller Fennel Herb Foeniculum vulgare Roman-medieval – English Civil War

Garlic, Softneck garlic, harneck garlic, rocambole Herb Allium sativum L Anglian-medieval

Garlic mustard / Cavara & Grande hedge garlic / Hedge garlic (Alliaria petiolata) Roman / medieval-post med 15th-17th

Germander * Herb Teucrium chamaedrys Roman-medieval

Germander, Everblooming Herb Teucrium sp. Saxon –Norman – Medieval

Horehound / White Horehound Herb Marrubium vulgare Iron Age – Roman – Anglo – Scand – medieval

Hyssop Herb Hyssopus officinalis English Civil War

Hyssop, ‘Pink Delight’ Herb Hyssopus officinalis English Civil War

Mint Herb Mentha sp. Mesolithic-Neolithic –late Bronze Age- Iron Age – Roman – Saxon – Anglo – Scand – medieval – English Civil War

Mint, Banana Herb Mentha sp. Mesolithic-Neolithic –late Bronze Age- Iron Age –

Roman – Saxon – Anglo – Scand – medieval – English Civil War

Mugwort Herb Artemisia vulgaris medieval

Mustard, Wormseed / treacle mustard Herb Erysimum cheiranthoides Mesolithic – Neolithic – late Bronze Age – Iron Age – Roman – medieval

Parsley Curly / Garden Parsley Herb Petroselinum crispum Roman- Medieval – post-Medieval

Pepper – Black pepper, Green pepper, Pink pepper, White pepper Spice Piper Nigrum Linn Roman – post-Medieval

Reed mace, bulrush (Typhia lattifolia) Iron Age - medieval / 10th C / medieval-post-medieval

Rue Herb Ruta graveolens roman-AS-medieval

Savory, Dwarf Winter Herb Satureja hristi ‘Nana’ Roman/post-Medieval

Savory, Summer Herb Satureja hortensis Roman-Anglo-Scand-medieval

Savory, Winter Herb Satureja hristi Roman/post-Medieval

Self Heal Herb Prunella vulgaris Mesolithic-Neolithic-late Bronze Age – Iron Age - Roman – Anglo – Scand –medieval

Skullcap Herb Scutellaria baicalensis roman-AS-medieval

Sorrel Garden / Common Sorrel Herb Rumex acetosa Iron Age and Roman – AS/Medieval – Dark Age-early hristian 8th-11thcAd

St Johns Wort Herb Hypericum perforatum Mesolithic-Neolithic-late Bronze Age

Strawberry Alpine / Wild Strawberry Herb Fragaria vesca Mesolithic-Neolithic-late Bronze Age – Iron Age - Roman – Saxon – Anglo – Scand –medieval – 13th-16th cAD

Sweet Woodruff Herb Galium odoratum late Saxon – Medieval

Tansy Herb Tanacetum vulgare Roman-AS-medieval

Vanilla Grass / Sweet Vernal-Grass Herb Anthoxanthum odoratum Mesolithic – Iron Age and Roman - c. 1200 - post medieval

Violet, Royal Robe Herb Viola odorata Mesolithic-Neolithic-late Bronze Age

Violets, Parma Herb Viola sp. Mesolithic-Neolithic-late Bronze Age – Iron Age – Roman-Anglo-Scand –late Saxon – late medieval

Watercress Herb Nasturtium officinale Mesolithic-Neolithic-late Bronze Age – Roman-late medieval

Wormwood Herb Artemesia absinthium Iron Age and Roman

Yarrow Herb Achillea millefolium Roman – Saxon – Anglo – Scand – medieval – 10th -14th to late 18th c


Grains

English Names / Grain /  Latin Name /  Period of Archeological finds in Britain

Barley / six-row barley Grain Hordeum vulgare (barley) Neolithic or Early Bronze Age –Roman – Anglo – Scand – Late Saxon 10th – 13th – medieval

Bread Wheat / Club Wheat Grain Triticum aestivo-compactum Upper Palaeolithic to late Roman – Roman – Saxon – Anglo – Scand – medieval

Emmer Grain Triticum dicoccon (emmer) Neolithic – Late Bronze Age – Roman -

Flax Seed / cultivated flax Grain Linum usitatissimum (flax seed) Upper Palaeolithic to late Roman – Roman – Saxon – Anglo – Scand – medieval

Oats / cultivated oat Grain Avena sativa (oats) prehist-Romano-British-late Roman-Saxon – Anglo – Scand – medieval – Elizabethan 1560-1570 – 16th – 17th c

Rivet Wheat Grain Triticum turgidum (rivet wheat) Saxon (medieval)

Rye Grain Secale cereale (rye) Mesolithic-Neolithic-late Bronze Age – Roman – middle Saxon – medieval – post-med – Elizabethan 1560-1570

Spelt Wheat Grain Triticum spelta prehist-Romano-British-late Roman-Saxon - medieval



Nuts

English Names / Nut /  Latin Name / Period of Archeological finds in Britain

Almond Nut Prunus dulcis (almond) medieval

Hazelnuts Nut Corylus avellana (hazelnuts) mesolithic - neolithic - Iron Age - Roman - Scandinavian - Anglo-Saxon - medieval - 9th & 10th - 13th C

Walnut Nut Juglans regia (walnut) Iron Age - Roman - Anglo - Scand - Saxon - medieval 10th - early 13th - English Civil War



Fruits

English Names / Fruit / Latin Name / Period of Archeological finds in Britain

Apple / crab apple Fruit Malus sylvestris (apple) Mesolithic - Neolithic - late Bronze Age - Iron Age - Roman - Saxon - Anglo - Scand - medieval - 10th-13th cAD - English Civil War

Bilberries Fruit Vaccinium sp.(bilberries) including V. myrtillus Roman - Anglo - Scand - medieval

Bird Cherry Fruit Prunus padus (bird cherry) Iron Age - Roman

Blackberry / Bramble Fruit Rubus fruticosus agg. (bramble) Bronze Age - Roman - Saxon - Anglo - Scand - medieval - 10th-early 13th c - c. 1150-1500 - mid 17th-late 18th c

Blackcurrant Fruit Ribes nigrum Iron Age

Cherry Plum Fruit Prunus cerasifera (cherry plum) medieval

Cloudberry Fruit Rubus chamaemorus (cloudberry) Late prehistoric - early Roman

Crowberry Fruit Empetrum spp Roman-Anglo-Scand-medieval

Currant Fruit Ribes spp Saxon-medieval

Date Fruit Phoenix dactylifera (date) Roman - late 13th-mid 14th

Dewberry Fruit Rubus caesius (dewberry) Iron Age - Roman - Anglo - Scand - medieval - 12th-19th c

Elderberry Fruit Sambucus nigra Neolithic - Late Bronze Age - Iron Age - Romano-British - Saxon - Anglo - Scand - medieval - 12th-19th c

Fig Fruit Ficus carica (fig) Roman - Anglo- Scand- Saxon 10th cAD - medieval - 14-15th, c.1450 - English Civil War

Gooseberry Fruit Ribes uva-crispa (gooseberry) Iron Age - Roman - medieval

Grape Fruit Vitis vinifera (grape) Roman - Middle - Late Saxon 8th C - Anglo - Scand - medieval - 12th-19th c - English Civil War

Honeysuckle Fruit Lonicera Bronze age/ beaker

Juniper Berries Fruit Juniperus Iron Age - Roman - Viking overlying Pictish

Mulberry Fruit Morus nigra (mulberry) Roman - medieval

Nannyberry or sheepberry Fruit Viburnum sp Neolithic/Iron Age Romano-British - 1085-late 12thc

Olive Fruit Olea europaea roman -AS - medieval

Peach Fruit Prunus persica Anglian-medieval

Plum Fruit Prunus domestica ssp. domestica(plum) Roman - Saxon and medieval - 9th & 10th - 13th C

Prunes Fruit Prunus domestica neolithic - early Iron Age - Roman - Saxon (5th-7th cAD) - medieval

Quince Fruit Cydonia/Pyrus - Pyrus Cydonia Roman - medieval - English Civil War

Quince / Pear Fruit Cydonia/Pyrus (quince/pear) Roman - medieval - English Civil War

Raspberry Fruit Rubus idaeus (raspberry) Bronze Age - Iron Age - Roman - Anglo -Scand - medieval - 10th-early 13th c

Rose- hip Fruit Rosa sp.(rose-hip) Mesolithic - Neolithic - late Bronze Age - Iron Age - Roman Anglo - Scand - medieval - late medieval, post 1321

Rowan Fruit Sorbus aucuparia (rowan) Neolithic - Bronze age-Iron age - Roman - Anglo - Scand - medieval - 10th-early 13th c

Sloe or Blackthorn Fruit Prunus spinosa (sloe) Bronze age - Iron age - Roman - Saxon - Anglo-Scandinavian - medieval - 13th-16th cAD - English Civil War

Sour Cherries Fruit Prunus Section Cerasus (sour cherries including P. avium and P. cerasus) Roman to post medieval - English Civil War

Strawberry Fruit Fragaria sp medieval - mainly 13th to early 14th c

Wild Plum Fruit Prunus domestica sl (wild plum) Roman - Saxon and medieval - 9th & 10th - 13th C

Wild Strawberry Fruit Fragaria vesca (wild strawberry) Bronze Age - Iron Age transition - Roman - Saxon - Anglo - Scand - medieval