Lullingstone Roman Villa.

By Neil Muir (NEILMUIR1) on September 7, 2014

Lullingstone Roman Villa was built in the Darent valley in Kent, England. First as a house in 100 AD; then added to as time went on over 300 years. A magnificent piece of the U.K.s amazing & stunning history.


Lullingstone did not look like this in circa 100 A.D. In fact apart from Roman artifacts found in 1750 and in 1939 the whole site was left untouched, and indeed unknown. Then in 1949, some amazing excavators started to uncover a fascinating bit of history.

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You think under floor heating is new, think again for the Romans had it! This wing was put on, in 275 A.D. as an addition, as the owners prospered. Most of the remains date from then. What most visitors see are not the Roman floors at all. Apart from the mosaic and the cellar the rest are the sub floors and the PILAE, which are the amazing supports for the under floor heating. I find it incredible that the Romans had wall flues covered with tiles; the flues were vented through the roofs. This circulated the hot air.

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A turn of amazing events by the excavators found that there was a house church, above the Roman cult room. The cult room was used for Pagan cult worship, possibly at the same time as the first ever Christianity and Christian room ever known in Britain was used. Above is the House church room and bellow the deep room (cult room). By carefully and painstakingly putting fragments of plaster back together, the excavators found the existence of the house church. Above right is the Chi-Ro.  A reconstruction is now in the British museum of the earliest known emblem of Christianity, in Britain. Many other villas have been found throughout Britain.

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This is what the villa looked like in a model reconstruction. Roman style and sophistication is shown in jewellery and other essentials.

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The amazing mosaic at lullingstone. A skelton found there.

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The Romans were very fastidious on personal hygiene. You thought hot rooms and cold plunges were new, but they had them. Even changing rooms as well. Baths and washing faculties abound in this villa.

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The changing rooms on the left of course the Romans had a well in the villa. However the well was abandoned in AD 200. The well was given up, as the labour involved to get the water for the villa was immense, so the inhabitants simply built an Aqueduct, fed by gravity to bring water to the house!


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Who in fact lived there? These busts were found on the stairs to the cult room. The first one is of Pubilus Herlvius Pertinax who was Governor General of Britain in AD 185-6 Then Emperor for 3 months. He evidently upset the Roman Legions, due to his harsh rule of Britain, and was forced to resign. The other as both was made in Italian marble. is of his father Pubilus Helvius Succesus.


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Roman building artifacts and the stairs to the baths!

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The kitchen and Grave goods for the afterlife, or so they believed.


The beautiful Darrent valley in Kent.

I must thank English Heritage for allowing me to take pictures, and indeed looking after this most remarkable place. It is most magical and yet mysterious. If you ever get a chance go there.


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About Neil Muir
I started as a seven year Apprentice for a Parks Department on the London\Kent borders. Going to college one day a week and working in the varied Victorian parks, gardens and nurseries five days a week.
After this I worked for many large estates and became Head Gardener in different locations. However with the growing use of pesticides and herbicides I went back to University, primarily to study Conservation and Ecology, but relevant to the now growing organic movement in the UK. After 28 years in Horticulture due to an accident I was informed I could no longer do the physical work involved and was retired. I love supporting the Great British Gardens we have in our small island, and cooking the traditional food of this Country. My hobbies are listening to bagpipe music, steam trains and model making, plus of course gardening.

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Comments and discussion:
Subject Thread Starter Last Reply Replies
Lullingstone Roman Villa valleylynn Sep 12, 2014 6:07 PM 21
Lullingstone Roman villa irisarian Sep 10, 2014 8:09 PM 4
Roman culture remains in Gt. Britain. magga Sep 9, 2014 9:23 AM 2

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