IOW-86D066: Early Medieval Strap End

Rights Holder: Isle of Wight Council
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Unique ID: IOW-86D066

Object type certainty: Certain
Workflow status: Published Find published

An incomplete copper-alloy strap-end of Late Early-Medieval date (AD 850 - AD 1066). Length 27.5mm, width 9.0mm and 3.8mm thick. Weight 2.76g.

The surviving part of the strap end is symmetrical in plan. The object has sinuous sides that are convex in profile at both ends but concave in the middle, forming a narrowed waist. The attachment end is split to form two leaves (or plates) that would have accommodated a strap or girdle. However, these are both incomplete due to an old transverse break that has occurred mid-way through a rivet hole.

The lower half has a terminal in the form of a pointed knop. The lower part of each face, adjacent to the knop, is decorated with an engraved border line, in the shape of a pointed oval, which encloses an engraved cross. On one face this is a cross pattée and the other appears to be a cross potent, although due to corrosion the style of each cross is difficult to determine.

The piece is corroded but a patina has subsequently formed over the degraded surface on both faces. The patina ranges in colour from light to dark green.

This strap-end belongs to a small group including NARC677, a gilded silver strap end with an H-rune from Long Buckby, Northamptonshire. A description of this Northamptonshire piece (Treasure case no. 2000 T40) is given in the Treasure Annual Report 2000, 32, fig. 40: "A silver strap-end with traces of gilding; it is broken off at both ends, but originally took the form of two flattened spatula ends separated by a narrow ribbed waist. The split end has two incised arcs which seem to represent a highly stylised version of the acanthus leaf often seen on strap-ends of the middle Saxon period, and is framed by an incised line; within the field so defined is a single T-rune. The opposite end has lost any terminating feature it originally had; it has a clear H-rune, and the remains of a possible 'i' rune where the plate is broken away. The back is plain, apart from the ribbing at the waist". It is dated to the 8th century.

Another example, also in silver, can be found at BH-F2CC91 (2011 T400) which has curvilinear relief decoration on one face of the upper half only. The group may be related to Thomas's Class D, which is thought to have a date-range including the 9th and 10th centuries (Thomas 2003,6).

Thomas, G. (2003), 'Late Anglo Saxon and Viking Age strap ends 750 - 1100: Part 1', Datasheet 32, Finds Research Group AD 700 - 1700.

Find of note status

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

Class: Thomas Class D (variant)

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: EARLY MEDIEVAL
Subperiod from: Middle
Subperiod to: Late
Ascribed Culture: Anglo-Saxon style
Date from: Circa AD 700
Date to: Circa AD 1000

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 27.5 mm
Width: 9 mm
Thickness: 3.8 mm
Weight: 2.76 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Friday 23rd February 2007

Personal details

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Other reference numbers

Other reference: IOW2007-3-16

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Completeness: Incomplete

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

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
Discovery circumstances: Metal detecting rally
General landuse: Cultivated land
Specific landuse: Operations to a depth greater than 0.25m

References cited

Author Publication Year Title Publication Place Publisher Pages Reference
DCMS 2000 Treasure Annual Report 2000 Department for Culture, Media and Sport 32, fig. 40

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: IOW
Created: 15 years ago
Updated: 3 years ago

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