A Group of Archaeologists Decided to Rebury a Unique Roman Villa

Just one year after archaeologists announced the discovery of the ruins of a sprawling ancient Roman villa in the UK, they decided to rebury them. According to a government preservation organization called Historic England, this move will safeguard the unique archaeological site for future generations.

A Group of Archaeologists Decided to Rebury a Unique Roman Villa

The Decision to Rebury the Roman Villa Was Made to Preserve It

When the discovery was made last year, it delighted experts, who at first even underscored its historical significance. Later on, the fantastic find turned out to be far more than scientists initially thought it was and gave them a better understanding of Roman Britain. The ruins were unearthed in Scarborough, England, in 2021 after investigating a piece of land slated for housing development. The villa seems to have been a high-status property like a luxury dwelling or religious site, and the compound included a luxury bathhouse. It could even have been a stately gentleman’s club. It was about the size of two tennis courts with a circular center that could’ve been a tower.

Archaeologists Rebury Important Sites to Protect Them From Damage

According to archeologists, the villa was designed by the best architects in northern Europe at the time and also constructed by the finest craftsmen. The discovery was one of national importance and probably one of the most important Roman buildings found in the past decade. So, the decision to rebury such an important site was surprising for many. Still, there are good reasons behind it. First, archaeological finds are often reburied whether to protect a site against vandalism and damage from tourists or to shield it from the weather. Sometimes, there are not enough funds available to maintain a site. In the case of this Roman villa, shielding it from human and environmental threats is the reason they need to rebury it.

Romans first settled in York in 71 C.E., some 40 miles from where the villa was unearthed. One of the mysteries around it is that while York served as the local seat of power for Roman emperors like Septimius Severus and Constantine the Great, this dwelling was located quite far from local Roman centers.