Finds of the Month – July 2021

Another full month back with fewer restrictions on meeting finders has meant more finds being recorded, but just three this week and all Roman!

First up is a copper-alloy Roman harness pendant. The pendant is of Bishop Type 1L. The top of the pendant has a complete, solid integral loop. These 1st century harness pendants aren’t very common finds and can be closely associated with the Roman military.


Next is a Roman Continental Plate brooch. The brooch consists of three circles arranged as a triangle. Each circle has a smaller, inner circle in the middle. It is possible that these circles were filled with enamel but none remains. On the back there is a broken hinge and catchplate for a pin, which is missing. The hinge is placed between two of the circles and the catchplate is on the edge of the bottom circle.


Finally is this very interesting copper-alloy and lead Roman steelyard weight. The weight a head weight in the form of a double head. On the top of the heads is a suspension loop and the bottom of the weight is flat. Both faces at distinctly different in form. The larger head is more pronounced, projects further forward and has more distinct features. Both eyes are deeply sunken, the nose is large and bulbous and the lips of the mouth clearly defined. The second face is flatter and worn. The eyes are just about perceptible but the nose and mouth are very worn. There is a slight beard still visible and large tufts of hair on the sides of the head. This double headed weight might often be seen as the two-headed Roman God Janus, however, the faces are not very God like.


These figurative weights might have had apotropaic properties. The idea of invoking a deity in the form of a weight as a way of guaranteeing the sellers measures is a possible interpretation. Addtionally, double head weights provide this protection for both seller and buyer. The faces of the weight are watching both parties in the transaction.