HESH-BB3706: Unknown artefact of probable post medieval or early modern date 1550-1800

Rights Holder: Birmingham Museums Trust
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Unique ID: HESH-BB3706

Object type certainty: Certain
Workflow status: Awaiting validation Find awaiting validation

Cast copper alloy object of probable post medieval or early modern date 1550-1800. The artefact is broadly rectangular in plan and square shaped in cross section. It expands in width along its length, with the narrowest part being an integral cast loop which expands into an ornately moulded central element. This central element expands again into a rectangular square sectioned base. The artefact measures 26.1mm height, 10.3mm width and is 10.5mm thick. It weighs 11.72 grams (0.41 ozs, 181 grains).

The artefact is also highly decorated with both cast and incised elements. The profile, as already discussed varies along the length; at each change in thickness or width the object is decorated with a linear longitudinal incised band. However, the most decoration is on the lower part of the object and on the base. The lower decoration consists of similar longitudinal bands and deliberate cast notches. The base of the artefact has a deeply incised pattern. This consists of two vertical and two horizontal lines arranged to form a grid of nine uneven spaces. In the central square formed by the grid is an incised cross. In the four spaces directly above, below, left, and right of this central cross are small rectangular incised notches. These are positioned on the edge of the base. The other four spaces at each corner are empty and plain. The artefact is a mid brown green colour with an even but slightly abraded patina. On several faces of the artefact is a concreted corrosion product which obscures the decoration. This corrosion is a light green grey colour. There is a small amount of damage from abrasion in the burial environment but this limited to the upper parts.

There are several possible interpretations of what this artefact is; however, none of these interpretations is convincing enough to record it as such. The list includes: a possible trade weight, a weight from a clock, a personal seal from a fob chain, a personal decoration or emblem, a harness decoration, or a gaming piece. The first three are probably the most convincing. The date of the artefact is based on the age of the patina and the fact that it is cast rather than machine made. No references have been found to aid identification.

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: POST MEDIEVAL
Period from: POST MEDIEVAL
Period to: MODERN
Date from: AD 1550
Date to: AD 1800

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 26.1 mm
Width: 10.3 mm
Thickness: 10.5 mm
Weight: 11.72 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Monday 20th September 2004

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Mr Peter Reavill
Identified by: Mr Peter Reavill

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Manufacture method: Cast

Spatial metadata

Region: West Midlands (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Telford and Wrekin (Unitary Authority)
District: Telford and Wrekin (Unitary Authority)
Parish or ward: Madeley (Civil Parish)

Spatial coordinates

4 Figure: SJ6904
Four figure Latitude: 52.63286
Four figure longitude: -2.459472
1:25K map: SJ6904
1:10K map: SJ60SE
Grid reference source: From finder
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 100 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
General landuse: Other
Specific landuse: Garden

References cited

No references cited so far.

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: HESH
Created: 13 years ago
Updated: 8 years ago

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