Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Hadrian's Wall: Housesteads

The Caulfield Quarry and Crags

Granary at Housesteads Camp--note raised flooring

Vicki on the Wall--a graveled part passing
through some woods

The Wall, looking back toward the woods, all over-grown,
but still mostly there and standing

Remains of Milecastle 37

Somehow this view reminded me of the Great Wall of China
--although Hadrian's is but the faintest shadow...

The next day we drove further east along the Wall to the Housesteads Camp, near Milecastle 37. (They built towers every mile, and a garrison fort, about 160 men, every five miles). We'd always thought about walking the Wall--one of Britland's great walks is the Wall, coast-to-coast. On this latest cool, rainy, and windy day, we settled for a few miles west and back.

That the Wall remains at all is nothing short of a marvel. (The same is true in China). Six or more centuries passed between the time the Romans departed and Norman rule (that is, centralized, powerful government). The Wall is indeed reduced and in some places incomplete. It is safe to assume that any pasture fence, barn, house, great house, abbey, cathedral, or castle within a hundred miles each way has got some of Hadrian's Wall built-in!

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