Poole Harbour was an important port during the Iron Age and there is a great deal of evidence to show that the people living there were trading with the Romans. Later, at its largest, the Roman Empire was home to sixty million people. Every day, ships carried goods to and fro across the Empire. Traders visited Britain from as far away as Athens (in Greece) and Syria (in the Middle East). Archaeologists have found evidence of fish sauce being imported from Antibes in the south of France and olive oil from Spain as well as fine pottery from France and glass from Egypt.

The Romans moved goods around their large Empire in ships with two square sails.

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Find out more about Roman ships Find out more about the goods Romans traded Find out more about the voyage to Poole Teachers' notes