NGRef: TL 963 227
|TL963227||c.495 x 485 ft
(c.150 x 147 m)
This well-known Roman fort is sited just north of the B1022 Maldon Road near Brickwall Farm, Stanway (TL963227), within the earthworks of the oppidum of the Trinovantes tribe a few hundred yards to the north-west of the British royal enclosure. The fort's defenses consisted of a single wide ditch backed by an earthen rampart 10-12 feet wide revetted front and back with timber. Roughly square in plan and measuring about 495 feet north-south by 485 feet transversely (c.150 x 147 m), these defenses enclosed an area of about 5½ acres (c.2.2 ha). Two Auxiliary units have been recorded at Stanway, both of which were composed of a nominal five-hundred peregrine (i.e. non-Roman) troopers, one cavalry Ala or 'wing', and a mixed unit of horse and foot soldiers, a Cohors Equitata.
|LONGINVS SDAPEZE MATYCI F DVPLICARIVS ALA PRIMA TRACVM PAGO SARDICA ANNO XL AEROR XV HEREDES EXS TESTAM F C H S E|
"Longinus Sdapeze, son of Matycus, Duplicarius¹ of Ala Primae Thracum, from the country district of Sardica,² who lived for forty years, with fifteen years paid service. His heirs set this up as stipulated in his will. He lies here."
(RIB 201; tombstone)
The First Wing of Thracians was a five-hundred strong cavalry unit recruited from among the tribes living along the lower Danube in southern Romania and Bulgaria.
|D M AR... RE... VAL... COH I VA... QVI M... EX AERE COLLATO|
"To the spirits of the departed and to Ar[...] Re[...] Val[...] of the First Cohort of Vangiones, who [...] former collector of taxes."
(RIB 205; tombstone)
The Vangiones were a Belgic tribe on the upper Rhine from among whom the First Cohort of Vangiones were recruited. This was a mixed unit of both horse and foot soldiers known as a cohors equitata, a nominal one-thousand strong (cohors milliaria), but it is possible that they had been split into two units of five-hundred cohors quingenaria as they were later attested at Cilurnum (Chesters, Northumberland; RIB 1482) and concurrently at Condercum (Benwell, Tyne & Wear), both forts on Hadrian's Wall, also at Habitancum (Risingham, Northumberland; RIB 1215), beyond the Wall in Northumberland.