Abbey Farm Villa was
located on the Isle of Thanet, whose landscape was described in about 250 CE by the Roman scholar Solinus
felix frumentariis campis -- glad with fertile fields.
This winged corridor villa,
looked out over the Wanstum Channel to mainland Kent, was less than
a half mile from the shoreline.
The u-shaped residence
surrounded the north, east, and west sides of a front
garden that had its own well and graveled paths.
The villa and the garden it enclosed was located
within a larger farmstead that had a high wall and a wide gate on the south.
A paved road
passed through this gate, crossed the farmyard, and bisected the
enclosed garden nearer the house.
The floor plan
of most villas, including Abbey Farm Villa, can be determined
from masonry footings that
have survived in spite of weathering, plowing, and the
robbing of stone for use in other buildings.
remains of most Roman villas in Britain, whether of
wood or masonry, have totally disappeared. Fragments of
brick and stone, pieces of wall plaster, panes of glass -- these
provide hints, but only hints, about the above ground appearance
of a villa.