Ampulla and Graffiti

In a previous piece on this blog, I noted similarities between the so-called “witch-marks” and other apotropaic signs found as graffiti in churches and old buildings, and symbols found on lead tokens recorded on the PAS database. In the course of my lugubrious browsing of the database during the current lockdown (I unfortunately find myself …more

Edward Defaced

Penny of Edward I, class 10ab, AD1300-1305 (PUBLIC-1F8F45). Copyright: Roger Thomas, License CC-BY. With Hallowe’en just around the corner I thought it would be an appropriate time to share this spooky-looking coin. Someone has literally ‘punched out the lights’ on the kings face of this medieval coin, and made such a thorough job that they’ve …more

Token protection?

As some of you may know, for the past couple of years I have been engaged in a little project which has taken me around the churches of the Derbyshire Peak, the idea being to photograph in detail the alabaster tomb effigies that are unusually common in the region. My notion was to create a …more

Meet the Volunteer: Meghan

A very cold day in Northumberland Tell us about yourself I started volunteering for the Portable Antiquities Scheme in Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire in October 2017, a few months after graduating with an MA Archaeology degree at Newcastle University. My undergraduate degree is also in archaeology, and both my dissertations involved looking at archaeology from the …more

Gold angel of Henry VII found in Derbyshire

Gold angel of Henry VII from near Ashbourne (DENO-C5A99E). Copyright: Derby Museums Trust. Licence: CC BY This gold medieval angel of Henry VII was recently found by a detectorists near Ashbourne (DENO-C5A99E). Henry VII, also known as Henry Tudor, was born in 1457 at Pembroke Castle in Wales. He was the son of Margaret Beaufort, …more

Counterfeits, clippings and copies in Derbyshire

Derbyshire appears to have been a hotbed of coin counterfeiting in the past. Several counterfeit Roman denarii and 17th century half crowns and shillings have been discovered in the county and recorded with the PAS. Counterfeits were silver plated (e.g. DENO-DAAFF0), or made from base silver and disguised with a silver wash (e.g. PUBLIC-F070C6). They can …more

Derbyshire Unearthed: 20 Years of Treasure and the PAS

Derbyshire Unearthed is an exhibition at Derby Museum and Art Gallery celebrating the 20th anniversary of the implementation of the Treasure Act 1996 on 24th September 1997 in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and the founding of the Portable Antiquities Scheme. The exhibition is in two parts. Part 1: Artefacts runs from 23rd September 2017 to 4th …more

Districts of Derbyshire: Erewash

Erewash is a local government district and borough of eastern Derbyshire. It lies to the east of Derby and to the west Nottingham. The borough is home to 112,081 people and the towns of Ikeston and Long Eaton are located here. Occupation in this area seems to date back to at least the Neolithic. Evidence …more

Districts of Derbyshire: South Derbyshire

South Derbyshire is a local government district of Derbyshire. The area contains one third of the National Forest, which is a scheme designed to increase woodland cover to about a third of all the land within its boundary. Within the district are also the towns of Melbourne and Swadlincote, and the villages of Repton and …more

Meet the FLA: Helen

Tell us about yourself. I am the Finds Liaison Assistant for Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire. I have been working with the PAS for three years and this is my second time working in Derby. I have been FLA since December 2016. What does your role involve? My role involves recording archaeological finds brought in by detectorists, …more