IOW-C4B3D2: Late Iron Age Sword-Belt Ring.

Rights Holder: Isle of Wight Council
CC License:

Rights Holder: Isle of Wight Council
CC License:

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Unique ID: IOW-C4B3D2

Object type certainty: Possibly
Workflow status: Published Find published

A complete cast copper alloy circular hoop of probable Late Iron Age date (120 BCAD 43). Possibly a strap fitting associated with a sword belt. Treasure case no. 2006 T396. Outer diameter 37.0mm. maximum internal diameter 21.5mm and 10.5mm thick. Weight 42.45g. The external shape of the hoop is circular, having a diameter of 37.0mm and the internal shape is sub-circular, having a maximum diameter of 21.5mm. The internal face of the hoop is convex. Viewing the hoop from the side, the external face has a slightly off-centre and indistint circumferential rib. On one side of the rib it is convex in profile and the other side has a concave profile. The piece is corroded and in poor condition. It is suffering from active bronze disease. However, about 50% of the surface area has a shiny and smooth dark-green patina. A complete cast copper alloy strap fastener of Late Iron Age date was found within 2.0m of this find. See Portable Antiquities Scheme find: IOW-C3C8A6.


Jody Joy, Curator of Iron Age Collections at The British Museum, has commented on these two artefacts: The simple belt-ring is a relatively common find of Iron Age type and was presumably used as some form of belt fastener. The buttoned-ring [IOW-C3C8A6] is less common. Two similar rings were both deposited in association with iron swords at Coleford, Gloucestershire and Owslebury, Hampshire. Both of these swords were also found with belt-rings. It is therefore probable that the buttoned-ring and the belt-ring represent the metal remains of a belt used in the suspension of a sword. Based on the dating of the Coleford and Owslebury swords (both swords are of Stead’s ‘type D’ dated from the end of the second century BC – mid-1st century AD) the rings can be dated from the end of the second century BC – Roman Conquest. Conclusion: Both objects are made from base-metal and are late Iron Age in date. Association has been proved on two counts. First, the objects were uncovered only 1 metre apart. Second, there are clear archaeological precedents for these objects to be found in direct association with one another. Therefore in accordance with the Treasure (Designation) Order 2002, these objects should be considered as treasure.

Find of note status

This has been noted as an interesting find by the recorder.

Subsequent actions

Current location of find: Acquired by the Isle of Wight Heritage Service, September 2007
Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: IRON AGE
Subperiod from: Late
Period from: IRON AGE
Subperiod to: Late
Period to: IRON AGE
Date from: Circa 120 BC
Date to: Circa AD 43

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Thickness: 10.5 mm
Weight: 42.45 g
Diameter: 37 mm

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Sunday 14th May 2006 - Thursday 1st June 2006

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Mr Frank Basford
Identified by: Mr Frank Basford

Other reference numbers

Other reference: IOW2006-70-2; Treasure case no. 2006 T396.

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Manufacture method: Cast

Spatial metadata

Region: South East (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Isle of Wight (Unitary Authority)
District: Isle of Wight (Unitary Authority)
To be known as: Isle of Wight

Spatial coordinates

Grid reference source: Generated from computer mapping software
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 1 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
Current location: Acquired by the Isle of Wight Heritage Service, September 2007
General landuse: Cultivated land
Specific landuse: Operations to a depth greater than 0.25m

References cited

No references cited so far.

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: IOW
Created: 12 years ago
Updated: 8 years ago

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