Samian ware

Roman Samian ware sherds from Church Farm, SarrattA distinctive pottery ware produced mainly in south and central Gaul and the Moselle valley in the first three centuries AD. It was copied from Italian Arretine ware and was itself widely imitated. It is a red ware with a bright glossy surface, plain or elaborately decorated by means of moulds. The shapes are derived from metal prototypes, for which they were indeed merely cheap substitutes. Its archaeological value arises from its commonness on Roman sites, and its closely studied variability. For dating purposes it is often superior to coins. Samian has been found across the county in places such as Salden Wood in Mursley and north of Redwood Close in Burnham.