Tag Archives: Sub-Saharan Africa

Black History – ‘Beachy Head Lady’

Line drawing of 'Beachy Head Lady' - a forensic reconstruction of the face of remains from 200-250AD - she has long curly hair, is looking forward with her mouth slightly open.

‘Beachy Head Lady’ was a woman of Sub-Saharan African descent who lived in what is now Beachy Head, East Sussex, in 200-250 AD. Sub-Saharan Africa was not part of the Roman Empire. She may have been born in Africa and then travelled or was brough to the UK at a young age, or she may have been born in England: archaeologists are sure that she grew up in south-east England.

She was about 20 or 21 when she died, her body shoed no signs of wounds or disease, and she had healthy teeth and bones. It is very difficult to draw many conclusions from this other than the certainty that there were black people in Roman Britain, growing up in what is now Beachy Head.

The image above is based on a forensic facial reconstruction.