Reading Museum Town Hall

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Reading's Archaeology

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Twelfth century stone corbel discovered during the excavations on the Oracle shopping centre site in 1997

Although Reading’s name has a Saxon origin, people lived here for centuries before Reada gave his name to the settlement in about the sixth century AD. We can learn about the history of Reading from remains left behind by the people of the past. Any development in Reading that disturbs the ground is likely to produce some evidence of the town’s past. Pottery, coins, animal bones and other material can tell us about the life, work and diet of the people who lived here.

Objects have come from collectors in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, building work in the 1950s and 1960s and more recently from developer-funded excavations by professional archaeological contractors. Even the occasional find from a local garden can help to build up the picture of everyday life in the town.

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