Museum of London


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Digging up the romans
People Town Life Invasion and Settlement Army Beliefs Crafts Roads and Trade

Digging up the Romans

Illustration showing houses and workshops clustered around the large central forum, and stretching out along the grid of straight roads. In the front left a bridge crosses the river towards Southwark. Magnifing glass image

Enlarge image

The Roman city of Londinium, artist's reconstruction

Before the Romans invaded Britain, London did not exist.

The Romans invaded in AD43. They built a bridge over the River Thames. Around it they built a town. Londinium became the most important town in Britain for the next 400 years.

Follow the themes using the navigation above: choose from People, Town Life, Invasion and Settlement, Army, Beliefs and Crafts, Roads & Trade. Find out who Roman Londoners were and what their lives were like.

Or find out about archaeology in action and what it can tell us about life in Londinium nearly 2000 years ago.

Digging up the Romans in Shadwell
download the movie

Link to movie

Black and white close-up photograph of a stone wall with 2 stripes of thin bricks running through

Play Londinium!
A game to play on your own or as a class

Photograph of a masonry wall with a parallel ditch in front. One archaeologist sits to the right with a clipboard, the other stands behind the wall

Archaeology in action
Find out more

Photograph of a metal statuette in the shape of a man with one arm out, holding a pot

Statuette of the god Mercury