Potsherd: Atlas of Roman Pottery

Central Gaulish glazed ware

Green-glazed cups and beakers with pale brown or white fabrics, and barbotine or relief decoration, produced in Central Gaul and widely distributed across Gaul and Britain during the 1st and 2nd centuries AD.

Fabric and technology

Most commonly a hard, almost pure white or cream wheel-thrown fabric (2.5Y 9/0) with sparse red inclusions and clean or slightly laminar fracture – identical to that of white Central Gaulish colour-coated ware (CGCC). The surfaces are covered with a translucent lead glaze (0.25 to 0.5mm thick) which varies from pale yellow-green to a dark olive green in colour. On cups and beakers the glaze covers the entire surface, but on enclosed flagons only the external surface is covered. Some vessels mould-made, using the same technology (and forms) as contemporary samian wares. Others have appliqué motifs or barbotine decoration.


Greene’s type-series (1979; 1978) covers the forms found in Britain:

Type Form Equivalent
1 Small flagon Déch. 61
2 Flagon Déch. 60
3 Flagon Déch. 62
4 Handled bowl Déch. 59
5 Carinated bowl Drag. 29
6-7 Handled bowls
8-9 Hemispherical cups
10 Carinated handled cup
11 Straight-sided beaker
12-16 Beakers
17 Lamp filler
18 Large bowl


Generally pre-Flavian in Britain, but a few examples from Flavian sites. Production probably commenced in the Tiberian period.


Two regions of Central Gaul – the Allier valley and Lezoux. A few vessels from Britain are probably products of Lezoux (e.g. Greene 1978, 39) but the majority from St Rémy-en-Rollat/Vichy in the Allier valley.


Widespread in Britain, but sparse. The continental distribution covers northern France (north and east of the Loire), the Rhineland and western Switzerland.


Cirencester fabrics 60 and 75. JRPS bibliography fabric cgg. Leicester fabric LG1. Milton Keynes fabric 13c. Kent fine fabric 3a. Silchester fabric E32.


General introduction to the ware given by Greene (1979, 86-103) who discusses the moulded ware in more detail in Greene 1978. It has been suggested that the flagons (one of the more widespread forms) may have carried water from the spa at Vichy (Symonds and Wade 1999).


Greene 1978. Greene, K. T., ‘Mould-decorated Central Gaulish glazed ware in Britain’ in Early Fine Wares in Roman Britain, ed. P. R. Arthur and G. D. Marsh, British Archaeological Reports. British Series, 57, BAR, Oxford, (1978), pp. 31-60.

Greene 1979. Greene, K. T., The pre-Flavian fine wares, Report on the excavations at Usk, 1965-1976, 1, University of Wales Press [for] the Board of Celtic Studies of the University of Wales,, Cardiff:, (1979).

Symonds and Wade 1999. Symonds, R. P. and Wade, S. M., Roman pottery from excavations in Colchester, 1971-1986, Colchester Archaeological Reports, 10, Colchester Archaeological Trust Ltd, Colchester, (1999).

Distribution of Central Gaulish glazed ware in Britain
Roman Pottery in Britain (Tyers 1996)
  • Fabric code: CGGL (p.140)
Thumbnail images (click for higher resolution):
National Roman Fabric Reference Collection
(Dore & Tomber 1998, Museum of London Archaeology Service Monograph 2)
  • Fabric code: CNG GL 1 (Central Gaulish (White) Glazed ware 1, p.52).
  • Fabric code: CNG GL 2 (Central Gaulish (Cream) Glazed ware 2, p.53).
Worcestershire ceramics online database
(Worcestershire Historic Environment and Archaeology Service)
  • Fabric no. 102 (Central Gaulish glazed ware (St Remy-en-Rollat))
Thumbnail images (click for higher resolution):
La céramique romaine en Gaule du Nord
(Brulet, Vilvorder and Delage 2010)
  • Céramique à glaçure plombifère du Centre Gaule, fabrique 1 (GL-CG1) (p.294)
  • Céramique à glaçure plombifère du Centre Gaule, fabrique 2 (GL-CG2) (p.294)
Images and text not available on-line. See also the listings of International Fabrics Reference Collection for Roman Ceramics at Louvain (text in French).
Central Gaulish glazed ware
URL: http://potsherd.net/atlas/Ware/CGGL • © Text 1996, 2014: Layout 2012, 2014. Some images may be linked to other web sites.