LANCUM-2F27A4: Roman copper alloy seal-box lid, an Andrews type P3 - colours exaggerated

Rights Holder: The Portable Antiquities Scheme
CC License:

Rights Holder: The Portable Antiquities Scheme
CC License:

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Unique ID: LANCUM-2F27A4

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

Roman copper alloy seal-box lid, a variation of Andrews type P3. Only the lid remains, the rest of the artifact is absent. It is heart shaped in plan, with the stub of broken loop or hinge projecting from between the two lobes. The outer face is decorated with fine micro mosaic (millefiori) enamel insets. There are bands of concentric decoration. The raised copper alloy outer edge is indented, somewhat like a pie crust. The first band of enamel work is next. This consists of alternating squares of two different designs of chequerboard patterns. The design with the larger 'squares' is made up of white and red enamel, while the ones with the very small 'squares' are black and pale yellow. A plain raised copper alloy ridge separates this band from the next one which utilises the same decorative formula. There is an undecorated central raised heart shaped copper alloy area with what appears to be a raised ridge running up to the remnants of the hinge or loop. Marks on the inner face suggest the copper alloy element was cast in a cuttlefish bone. Probably dates from c100 to c300 AD.

Length 41mm, width 34mm, thickness approximately 2.5mm, weight approximately 9g.

Find of note status

This is a find of note and has been designated: Potential for inclusion in Britannia

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: ROMAN
Period from: ROMAN
Period to: ROMAN
Date from: Circa AD 100
Date to: Circa AD 300

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 41 mm
Width: 34 mm
Thickness: 2.5 mm
Weight: 9 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Saturday 19th June 2021 - Saturday 19th June 2021

Personal details

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Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Secondary material: Enamel
Completeness: Fragment
Surface Treatment: Inlaid with enamel

Spatial metadata

Region: North West (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Cumbria (County)
District: Allerdale (District)
To be known as: near Cockermouth

Spatial coordinates

Grid reference source: GPS (from the finder)
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 1 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
General landuse: Cultivated land
Specific landuse: Minimal cultivation

References cited

Author Publication Year Title Publication Place Publisher Pages Reference
Andrews, C. 2012 Roman Seal-Boxes in Britain Oxford Archaeopress P3

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: LANCUM
Created: About one year ago
Updated: 9 months ago

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