Cast of inscription from Hutcheson Hill, now in Chesters Museum © David Gill
In 1865 a Latin inscription (RIB 2198) was recovered at Hutcheson Hill in the western section of the Antonine Wall. Casts were made and the original was taken to the Chicago Museum where it was destroyed in the great fire of October 1871. [See also Canmore]
The inscription records a vexillatio of the 20th Legion Valeria Victrix that had constructed 3000 feet of the wall.
Another inscription, now in the Hunterian Museum, was found in 1969 near Hutcheson Hill and similarly records a vexillatio of the same legion that had constructed 3000 feet of the wall (AE 1971, no.225) [JSTOR].
A third inscription of the Twentieth Legion probably comes from near Duntocher (RIB 2199).
A vexillatio of the Sixth Legion Victrix Pia Fidelis was found at Duntocher (RIB 2200). This stretch was 3240 feet.
Abbotsford © David Gill
A fragmentary Latin inscription is built (at an angle) into the garden wall of Abbotsford, the home of Sir Walter Scott (RIB 2216). It was first known c. 1797 at Callendar House in Falkirk (see Canmore). This location has suggested that the inscription may have been linked to the Antonine Wall. Scott lived at Abbotsford from 1812-32.
The inscription reads: A vexi[llatio] | of the XXI[I] legion | Primigenia.
At the top left appear to be the legs of what could be a Capricorn, the emblem of Legio XXII. This legion was posted in Upper Germany.
The Legio XXII is also attested from the Roman fort of Birrens, to the north-west of Carlisle (Canmore). An inscription attesting the presence of troops from Legio VIII Augusta and Legio XXII Primigenia was found in 1991 (Britannia 1992, 318, no. 20 [JSTOR]). It has been suggested that this inscription is Antonine in date, and probably associated with troop movements during the construction of the Antonine Wall.
Antonine Wall at Seabegs Wood © David Gill
One of the best preserved sections of the Roman frontier system known as the Antonine Wall can be found at Seabegs Wood (to the west of Rough Castle). This is now is maintained by Historic Environment Scotland.
One of the most surprising Roman monuments is the ‘turf’ Antonine Wall that stretches effectively from the Firth of Forth to the Clyde. One of the best preserved sections is at the Roman fort of Rough Castle (near Falkirk). As you look northwards you get a sense of the edge of empire (though, of course, the network of Roman forts stretches northwards).
One of the best preserved sections of the second century AD Roman Antonine Wall can be seen at the Roman fort at Rough Castle. The fort is attached to the south side of the wall, with a substantial ditch running on the north side.
The Department of Environment published guides on behalf of the Secretary of State for Scotland. The one for the Roman frontier known as the Antonine Wall was published in 1973 with a second impression in 1974. The text is by David J. Breeze, with illustrations by Tom Borthwick. The guide is printed with the equivalent of 6 pages on each side of the folded strip. The cost was 10p.
Four pages have a colour map showing the line of the wall with ‘the best places to see the wall’.
The text sections have an introduction to the Antonine Wall, as well as the Roman army. The reverse covers four of the forts: Rough Castle, Castlecary, Croy Hill, and Bar Hill. There is a plan for each of the four forts, and there is an additional aerial photograph of Rough Castle. Local directions are provided for each fort.
There is a short reading list of three items that includes the OS Map of the Antonine Wall.