New exhibition displays the oldest souvenirs of Hadrian’s Wall

A new exhibit featuring the oldest collection of Hadrian’s Wall souvenirs is on display in Northumberland.

His collection, which contains mementos from nearly 2,000 years, includes one of the wall’s earliest souvenirs – the Rudge Trophy.

The exhibition, announced by English Heritage, will mark 1,900 years since the start of construction of the wall in 122 AD.

Produced around AD 130, the Rudge Cup is a small bronze bowl engraved with the name of Hadrian’s Wall, as well as an illustration of the historic wall.

The work is said to be made for a high-ranking military or civilian official stationed on the wall and will be a one-time commission.


2E9EMA4 Three Views of the Rudge Cup. By Van der Gucht, John 43.56. Place of publication: [England] Publishing company: [publisher not identified] Date of publication: [betwene 1725 and 1732] Item type: 1 print Medium: engraved Size: 16 x 25 cm sheet Former owner: George III, King of Great Britain, 1738-1820

It will sit alongside other historic souvenirs spanning nearly two millennia, including a replica of the Staffordshire Moorlands Pan, Winterton Pan and B Rouham Patera.

Other highlights include a replica of Hadrian’s large bust and part of the wooden fortress at Carlisle.

The collection also features a tin box, recently acquired by English Heritage, filled with recovered fragments discovered during a visit to Chesters in 1891, according to a handwritten note attached to its lid.

Frances McIntosh, curator of British heritage at Hadrian’s Wall, said: “Many of us will return from vacation this summer with a memento of our travels but the idea of ​​collecting objects. as a way of preserving old memories.

“In the second century, visitors had trouble bringing their own souvenirs, like the Rudge Cup.

“We wanted to show how souvenirs have changed, and perhaps more importantly, how they haven’t.

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“Some souvenirs may be grotesque, or even somewhat rough, while some are beautiful works of art, but they all carry memories of a visit and that’s what making them important to their owners, whether modern or Roman.”

The exhibition opens at Chesters Roman Fort and runs until October 30, with admission prices included. New exhibition displays the oldest souvenirs of Hadrian’s Wall

Fry Electronics Team

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