Where was the coffin from?
The lead was probably mined in Somerset, in the Mendip hills. The Romans
started mining and exporting lead very soon after they conquered Britain.
How was it made?
The coffin and its lid were made separately by pouring molten lead into a
big tray of damp sand. When the lead sheet had hardened the sides and ends
were cut and the edges folded up, like making a box from a flat sheet of
card. The joints were soldered to seal the coffin into shape.
What more can we find out?
The coffin lid is decorated with a scallop shell pattern made by pressing a
scallop shell face down into the sand mould before the lead was poured in.
Scallops shells are a common type of decoration on lead coffins from Roman
Britain. They are associated with the pagan belief in the dead person's
journey to the Underworld. This pattern on the coffin suggests that this
woman and her family held such pagan beliefs.