Bit Links

Introduction Bit links are bridle fittings of the late early-medieval period attached to the ends of an iron snaffle bit to which reins were secured.  They were set outside and adjacent to cheekpieces. Their form is similar to double-ended harness links, but differ in the presence of the boss adjacent to one of the loops, and their generally …more

Bridle Bits

Introduction Bits are composite objects used to control horses. They consist of mouthpieces, held in a horse’s mouth, attached to cheekpieces, in turn attached to the headstall and to the reins of a bridle. The arrangement of these elements is far more complex on a curb bit, which uses a lever action; for the most part we …more


Introduction Cheekpieces are separate components of snaffle bits from bridles; they were used in pairs, one at each end of the bit. They either had a hole through which a bit’s mouthpiece travelled and a loop for attaching the cheek strap of a bridle (in the late early-medieval period), or they were looped through the end-loops of a …more

Stirrup-strap Mounts

Introduction Stirrup-strap mounts are thickly cast objects, generally of broadly triangular or of trapezoidal form and characteristically with a flange projecting from the lower edge of the reverse.  They tend to measure between around 35mm-50mm high and around 25-35mm wide, with examples only occasionally falling outside these ranges. Examples will be of copper alloy, generally with …more


Introduction Strap-slides are looped metal fittings that were set at right angles to a strap to hold down the free end. They often have apertures that are greater than double the strap thickness to allow objects mounted to straps such as bar mounts and strap-ends to pass through them; the arched top on certain medieval …more