MOUNT

Unique ID: LON-A33FF5

Object type certainty: Certain
Workflow status: Awaiting validation Find waiting to be validated

A Medieval copper alloy livery mount, dating AD14th - 15th century. The mount has been cast in the style of a heraldic crest with a standing boar facing right stood on a twisted rope. The boar has a crown around its neck as a collar and a chain running down the back. There is also a crescent on the shoulder. There is some wear to the body of the boar but there are traces on the legs and underside of the boar of cast marks to represent bristles/fur. One ear is broken and missing. In heraldic terms the crescent is a form of cadency used to indicate this badge was used by the second son. On the reverse there are three rivets for attachment. Each of these rivets appears to have an integral rectangular plate which has been soldered onto the body of the mount. The surface of the reverse is irregular with pitting and seemingly marks of where the molten metal was poured into the mould and set.


The Museum of London has lead alloy boar badges in the collections. These have an integral pin for attachment. Spencer (1998:288-9) illustrates one example no. 281h a badge of a boar, bristled and membered. This example is similar to the above but it is not stood on a length of twisted rope nor does it have the collar of a crown. Spencer (ibid.) writes "Richard, Duke of Gloucester (later Richard III) took the white boar as his cognizance. Differenced only by a change of colour, this badge probably derived from Edward III...In 1483, royal wardrobe accounts show that thousands of boar badges were hastily ordered for use at Richard III's coronation in July, and again for the investiture of his young son, Edward, as Prince of Wales in September."
This mount is in the style of livery badges which would be worn by retainers and household servants to show their allegiance (Spencer 1998:278). Spencer continued "the badges identified their wearers as persons who were formally attached, or in some way beholden, to a particular magnet (or to the King himself) and who in return enjoyed their lord's protection or patronage". However the device was often chosen by the wearer and the same device could be simultaneously be used by different families so it can be hard to accurately identify the family or individual. Spencer (1998:279) notes that retainer's badges with devices were in fashion by the mid-14th century and continued in some households into the 17th century but they were at their peak in the second half of the 15th century during the dynastic struggles of the Houses of York and Lancaster.

Smith (1990) mentions the tomb of Ralph Fitzherbert in Norbury, Derbyshire (d. 1483) where there is a stone effigy wearing a livery collar comprising two straps (one over each shoulder) which meet in the centre of the chest. At the junction of the two straps, just above a buckle there is a boar badge pendant, also collared and chained. Along the straps are alternate rose and sun mounts (rose en soleil) indicating Yorkist allegiance and the boar is the white boar livery badge of Richard III. Smith (1990) explains the livery collage consisted of a strip of leather, silk or velvet set with mounts in gold, silver or latten, ending in two buckles linked by an ornamental trefoil from a badge could be suspended.

Similar boar mounts/badges are also recorded on the Portable Antiquities Scheme database for example, SWYOR-1781B2 and LEIC-F17145 - both appear to have the remains of pins or rivets on the reverse for attachment and are also copper alloy examples, however they do not have the crown collar. YORYM-1716A4 and LEIC-A6C834 are silver gilt examples and the recorders note that
the symbol of the white boar was used by Richard III's household and followers between the 1470's and 1485. LEIC-A6C834was found during the 2009 survey of the Battle of Bosworth (AD1485). A similar badge was also found at Middleham Castle, North Yorkshire and is now housed at the Yorkshire Museum. None of these examples have the crown collar.

Dimensions: length: 36.98mm; width: 50.42mm; thickness including pins: 7.43mm; thickness not including the pins: 3.86mm; weight: 19.58g.


References: Spencer, B. 1998. Pilgrim Souvenirs and Secular Badges. The Stationery Office, London.
Smith, C. E. J. Autumn 1990. The Livery Collar. In Coat of Arms no. 151. The Heraldry Society

Class: Livery

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder

Chronology

Broad period: MEDIEVAL
Period from: MEDIEVAL [scope notes | view all attributed records]
Period to: MEDIEVAL [scope notes | view all attributed records]
Date from: Circa AD 1300
Date to: Circa AD 1485

Dimensions and weight

Length: 36.98 mm
Width: 50.42 mm
Thickness: 3.86 mm
Weight: 19.58 g
Quantity: 1

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Mrs Kate Sumnall - [ view all attributed records]
Identified by: Mrs Kate Sumnall - [view all attributed records]

Other reference numbers

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy [scope notes | view all attributed records]
Manufacture method: Cast [scope notes | view all attributed records]
Completeness: Incomplete [scope notes | view all attributed records]

A resized image of Medieval boar livery badge

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Spatial metadata

Region: London
County: Greater London Authority
District: Tower Hamlets
Parish: St. Katharine's And Wapping

Spatial coordinates

4 Figure: TQ3380
Four figure Latitude: 51.503293 Four figure longitude: -0.085156
1:25K map: TQ3380
1:10K map: TQ38SW
WOEID: 26346668
Grid reference source: Generated from computer mapping software
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 10 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Other chance find [scope notes]
General landuse: Open fresh water[scope notes]
Specific landuse: Running water[scope notes]

Adjacent Domesday Book places

Domesday data within 2 km of discovery point is surfaced via the excellent Open Domesday website.

References cited

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Audit data

Created: Monday 19th November 2012
Updated: Friday 23rd November 2012

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