2nd century scandal at Vindolanda

Researchers studying the Vindolanda tablets, wooden documents detailing everyday life in Roman Britain, believe that five of the tablets show evidence of graft among public officials. (photo).

In addition to lists of expenditures such as boots and rations, the tablets claim expenses for "lavish parties" for officers. "Officers were paid very well - they could buy goods duty free so they would often fiddle expenses by buying items at a cut price then selling them at a profit," said Professor Tony Birley, who translated the tablets.