WMID-7C5FC4: Bronze Age socketed axe (probably) (front, profile, reverse)

Rights Holder: Birmingham Museums Trust
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Unique ID: WMID-7C5FC4

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

A copper alloy fragment, probably the blade end of a late Bronze Age socketed axe. The fragment consists of a slightly convex blade, two broadly straight sides which can be seen to be V shaped when the fragment is viewed in profile, and portions of two faces, one of which is more extensive than the second. The two incomplete faces and sides all have broken upper edges. The interior of the fragment is hollow, although the blade is solid for a length of approximately 9.5mm. The blade is heavily chipped and corroded and the original surface of the cutting edge is missing. The more complete face has a well developed green patina with some indentations visible together with striations running towards the blade. The interior of the more complete face also has a green patina, although this has a rougher surface than the exterior. The breaks, indentations and striations do not appear recent as there are traces of patina visible. The fragment is 42.7mm long and 36.1mm wide, and approximately 14mm thick. These are maximum dimensions. The fragment has a mass of 25.7g. The sides of the fragment do not taper markedly from the blade tip. Nor are the blade tips flared outwards. Flared blade tips and sides which taper towards the socket are common features of Bronze Age socketed axe heads (e.g. see Schmidt and Burgess (1981), "The Axes of Scotland and Northern England" plates 70 - 108). There are some socketed axes with less significantly tapering sides which do not have markedly flared blade tips identified by Schmidt and Burgess (ibid.). For example see items 1014, 1015 1369, 1465, 1491, and 1649. However, it must be noted that the blade and sides of this fragment are incomplete, and only a small portion of what appears to be the original surface survives - on only one of the sides. The object is a fragment, and many of the diagnostic features are missing or incomplete, complicating classification and dating. However, the form of the fragment suggests that it is probably from a socketed axe, from the Late Bronze Age (1150BC to 800BC).


Broad period: BRONZE AGE
Period from: BRONZE AGE
Period to: BRONZE AGE
Date from: 1150 BC
Date to: 800 BC

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 42.7 mm
Width: 36.1 mm
Thickness: 9.5 mm
Weight: 25.7 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Wednesday 16th January 2008

Personal details

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Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Manufacture method: Cast
Completeness: Fragment

Spatial metadata

Region: East Midlands (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Derbyshire (County)
District: South Derbyshire (District)
To be known as: Church Broughton

Spatial coordinates

Grid reference source: From finder
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 10 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
General landuse: Cultivated land

References cited

Author Publication Year Title Publication Place Publisher Pages Reference
Schmidt, P.K. 1981 The Axes of Scotland and Northern England Munich Prahistorische Bronzefunde Abteilung

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: WMID
Created: 14 years ago
Updated: 8 years ago

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