An inscription recovered from the Romano-British villa at Combe Down (vide R.I.B. 179 supra) would seem to indicate that by the early-third century the Provincial Procurator had relocated his offices to a palatial residence outside Aquae Calidae (Bath, Avon). It is possible that this villa was the winter quarters of the chief financial officer of Britannia, away from the hustle and bustle of the commercial centre at Londinium, where the stresses of procuratorship could be eased away in the naturally heated waters of the nearby springs sacred to the goddess Sul-Minerva.
RIB179 - Dedication to Caracalla?
For the welfare of the Emperor Caesar Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Pius Felix Invictus Augustus, Naevius, imperial freedman, procurators’ assistant, restored from ground-level these ruined Headquarters.
ANTONINI PII FELICIS INVIC
TI AVG NAEVIVS AVG
LIB ADIVT PROC PRINCI
PIA RVINA OPRESS A SOLO RES
There were stone quarries about a mile to the west at The Tumps (ST7462), and other roman villas at Wellow (ST7257) and Iford (ST7958), about 4 miles to the south-west and south-east respectively.
References for Combe Down
- Chronicle of the Roman Emperors by Chris Scarre (Thames & Hudson, London, 1995);
- The Roman Inscriptions of Britain by R.G. Collingwood and R.P. Wright (Oxford 1965).
Map References for Combe Down
NGRef: ST7662 OSMap: LR172