Skip to main content

Encyclopaedia of the North East

R - Rock to Roman

A large printed capital letter R with stone carvings, an axe, a bottle, a coin, a medal and some metal fragments.

rock n 
A general term for the solid material that forms the Earth's crust. 

Aberdeen is built on granite. The cold enduring strength of the rock is reflected in the character of the city. Elgin is built on sandstone, a softer material more given to flamboyance. Both the strength and the flamboyance are part of the North East landscape and people.


Roman adj of or pertaining to Rome esp 
1 the ~ Empire or 
the ~ Catholic church 

The Roman armies marched into the North East Scotland several times between the late 1st and 3rd centuries AD but they never stayed and the area was never part of the Roman Empire. The military campaigns are only marked by the faint traces of the temporary camps, usually only visible in aerial photographs. Stray finds such as the gold coin found on the route of the armies' march may mark their passing - or may have been bribes to native inhabitants. The glass bottle from Kinnord may represent more peaceful contacts such as trade or barter.

The Roman legacy is still with us. The ideas of classical Rome can still be seen in some of our laws, institutions (including this university) and religious practices. The Roman Catholic Church, which is part of this legacy, has left many traces in the North East.