CAM-216591: Early Medieval Great Square Headed brooch

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Unique ID: CAM-216591

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

An incomplete great square headed brooch (probably Hines Type XIII) dating to the sixth century AD. The brooch is in two pieces, one comprising the head and bow and the other a portion of the foot. Remnants of gilding are visible on the upper surfaces of both pieces. The brooch possesses a rectangular head plate with intricate decoration. The head plate frame is divided into three trapezoidal panels each filled with rows of opposing curled T shapes. Between each 'T' is a circular perforation - three on the side outer edges and five on the top outer edge. The head plate second panel comprises a band of stamped circles, whilst the inner panel depicts two stylised beasts facing each other, their feet and heads with curling beaks clearly visible. The head plate lower borders are also stamped with circles. On its underside are two semi-circular lugs with iron corrosion between them. The bow is arched with both marginal and a central longitudinal pronounced rib. Stamped circles are visible on these ribs where the bow meets the head plate and foot. The bow has been repaired or reinforced in antiquity. On its underside is a curved sheet of copper alloy secured with two circular section rivets. The rivets are just visible on the upper surface of the bow. The footplate possesses rounded upper borders and extended oval side lobes. The footplate frame comprises of three ribs and grooves. The footplate upper borders are decorated with a stylised animal, the eye of which is visible, whilst the inner panel decoration comprises a pattern of triangles and trapeziums. The footplate side lobes are decorated with two rows of stamped circles and the footplate bar is similarly decorated with a single row of stamped circles. The footplate terminal lobe is missing. On the underside of the footplate is a semi-circular catchplate. The catchplate has been reinforced on either side with two rectangular strips of copper alloy, held in place by a single circular section copper alloy rivet. The two fragments have a combined length of 91mm. The headplate has a width of 55mm, the bow 19mm and the side lobes 62mm. The brooch weighs 64g. A similar brooch is known from Little Wilbraham (No. 158) and Hines Type XIII has a distribution in Cambridgeshire and Northamptonshire.

Class: Great Square Headed
Sub class: Hines Type XIII

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: EARLY MEDIEVAL
Subperiod from: Early
Date from: Post AD 500
Date to: Ante AD 600

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 2
Length: 91 mm
Width: 62 mm
Weight: 64 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Thursday 1st March 2007

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Dr Philippa Walton
Identified by: Dr Philippa Walton

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Manufacture method: Cast

Surface Treatment: Gilded

Spatial metadata

Region: Eastern (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Suffolk (County)
District: Forest Heath (District)
To be known as: Exning

Spatial coordinates

Grid reference source: From a paper map
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 100 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
General landuse: Cultivated land
Specific landuse: Character undetermined

References cited

No references cited so far.

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: CAM
Created: Friday 27th April 2007
Updated: Thursday 24th February 2011

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