Five small-scale excavations were carried out in the 1990s by the Municipal Department for Archaeology along the Lozerlaan in The Hague (Van Zoolingen 2010). These excavations revealed an extensive indigenous Roman settlement. One of the buildings has been interpreted as a polyphase sanctuary, on the basis of relevant features and associated material culture.
The sanctuary shows three phases of construction (fig. 6). The first phase (AD 70-100) comprises at least five palisades, ranging in length from 2 to 16 m. Except for one, all palisades have the same orientation, NNW-SSE. An interesting parallel for these palisades is the open-air sanctuary near Empel, where two parallel rows of poles are considered to represent its first phase (Roymans & Derks 1994, 19). The Lozerlaan palisades are overlapped by a rectangular structure formed by a double palisade with poles placed in a ditch (phase 2, AD 100-130). The dimensions are approximately 9 by 8 m, the eastern and western sides being the longest. The orientation is roughly NNW-SSE. A cluster of posts was found within the rectangular area and a single pit was found outside the area. The rectangular structure was overlapped by a third construction (AD 130-190). This phase of the sanctuary is in many respects comparable with rural places of worship outside the study area (fig. 7). The structure consists of a square-shaped ditch with corners pointing to the four winds. The sides measure approximately 10 by 10 m. No traces of poles or stakes were recognized in the ditch. In the south corner of the structure there is a T-shaped post configuration consisting of at least eight posts. Though it could not be precisely dated, the orientation of the axis in line with the edges of the square shaped ditch suggests that both structures are contemporary. A very disturbed pit was documented within the boundaries of the square area.
Figure 7 Reconstruction of Lozerlaan sanctuary (C) based on examples of Kontich (A) and Hoogeloon (B) (after Annaert 1993, fig. 52; Slofstra & Van der Sanden 1987, fig. 6).
The sanctuary (or cultic place) is surrounded by ditches in the second and third phases of use. The western ditch has the same orientation as the palisades of the first phase and, as evidenced by the finds, forms an important element for the ritual character of the site. A bronze jug was found at the intersection with the southern ditch, about 6.5 m from the south corner of the square-shaped structure (Van Zoolingen 2010, 95-98). The jug is nearly complete, only the lid is missing (fig. 8). The object is composed of three parts: the jug itself, made of sheet bronze and a spout and handle cast from a single piece of brass and mounted on the jug with a brass strip. The jug is of the Eggers 128 type (Eggers 1951; Koster 1997, 33-35) and dates to the 2nd and 3rd centuries. This find is unique in the region. The discovery of a brass handle of a second jug during construction of an apartment building next to the cult place renders the situation even more exceptional. The jugs identify the place as a ritual site and their ritual function is documented elsewhere (for example Empel, see Koster & Derks 1994, 174-180). Metal ware was used for the preparation of sacrificial meals or deposited as a cultic object. The location of the bronze jug at the junction of two ditches surrounding the cult place is remarkable and may indicate that the deposition of the jug was carried out at a meaningful spot at the site.
Next to the jug, large quantities of metal, pottery and slag were collected, especially from the western ditch. The metal finds include fragments of a bronze (or copper?) cauldron, a folded belt fitting, fragments of bronze wire, copper fittings and a late 1st century bronze bracelet. In total, three fibulae were found (fig. 9). The imported pottery includes fragments of several South Gallic terra sigillata bowls, an olive oil amphora and coarse ware cooking pots (fig. 10). However, the majority of finds consisted of hand-shaped pottery. This material shows a low level of fragmentation (Van der Linden 2010), an indication that the vessels were deposited intact, possibly with contents (fig. 11).