Table of Contents
Please note that this guide has not been fundamentally changed from the original print version of the Finds Recording Guide (Geake 2001), written when the database contained just 8,800 non-numismatic records.
These are medieval or later objects formed of generally D-shaped loops; many have an integral bolt and the other, counterpart loop, has a hole at its flattened base. The loops can either be plain or have zoomorphic decoration: animal heads biting either a lower central boss, ring or bar. Sometimes two loops with bolts or bars are connected by a large central element, usually globular, occasionally openwork. Such swivels are multi-use items: the main suggestions made have been as links on dog leashes (some more clearly so), harness fittings, with smaller examples from hawk’s leashes.
PAS object type to be used
Use STRAP FITTING
PAS object classification to be used
Add ‘swivel’ to the Classification field
Traditionally, swivels have been dated to the 11th or 12th century (e.g. Hammond 2013; Read 2016, 67; nos 483-485), but dating by the animal heads is problematic and the use of swivels decorated with animal heads probably lasted for most of the medieval period: some have been found on composite objects also featuring T-shaped buckles typologically of 13th- or 14th-century date. However, there are apparent examples of Romanesque art among the animal heads; those biting a bar occur with large, generally globular, central components which are clearer indicators of a c. 12th-century date based on art style, see: SF4759, NMS-A473FB. Plain examples are attested from the medieval period, but continue into post-medieval period.