CPAT-5486C1: Bronze Age - Axehead - Socketed of Sompting type

Rights Holder: The Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust
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Unique ID: CPAT-5486C1

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

A cast copper alloy socketed axehead that in style, is consistent with the Sompting type with a prominent bulbous biconical collar with a horizontal moulding beneath. Sompting axes are typical of the Llyn Fawr phase, technically seen as the Bronze-Iron Age transition and sometimes now called the Earliest Iron Age (800-600BC).
The axehead has a sub square section mouth. The fixing loop is then drawn from the lower moulding to extend 24mm down the side moulding with an inner diameter of 8mm.

The axe is undecorated with flat plain sides, no edge chamfer and broadly splayed to the cutting edge; the seam sides are wedge shape in plan and slightly convex with clear casting lines. Although there are numerous marks/gouges to the surface of the axe, they look to be due to the passage of time in the ground. There are no clear signs of use.

Coming to the damage to the axe; there is significant and extensive damage that appears to be contemporary with the date of the axe. One side of the blade has been struck very hard with a heavy round object such to cause the axe to bend and split on the opposing face. The edge of the blade has then also been struck several times with a similar heavy round object, leading to an almost denticulate edge with four clear strikes. The damage must have been deliberate and had rendered the axe useless.

The reason for the damage may only be speculated at; it may have been an unsatisfactory casting or perhaps prepared for votive use or simply come to the end of its useful life. The surface has a bright mottled green patina with some original smooth brownish surface patina still in evidence.


Plain examples in Schmidt & Burgess (1981) The Axes of Scotland and Northern England. Brendan O Connor has recently written a review of Llyn Fawr hoards in Britain In The Earlier Iron Age in Britain and the near Continent (eds C. Haselgrove & R. Pope), Oxbow 2007, with useful references to hoards of this time.

Find of note status

This is a find of note and has been designated: County / local importance

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: BRONZE AGE
Subperiod from: Late
Period from: BRONZE AGE
Subperiod to: Early
Period to: IRON AGE
Date from: Post 800 BC
Date to: Ante 600 BC

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 102.4 mm
Width: 63.1 mm
Thickness: 36 mm
Weight: 306.3 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Sunday 28th February 2010

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Mr Rod Trevaskus
Identified by:
Secondary identifier: Mr Rod Trevaskus

Other reference numbers

SMR reference number: PRN117668

Materials and construction

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

Spatial metadata

Region: Wales (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Denbighshire (Unitary Authority)
District: Denbighshire (Unitary Authority)
Parish or ward: Llanbedr Dyffryn Clwyd (Community)

Spatial coordinates

4 Figure: SJ1456
Four figure Latitude: 53.094252
Four figure longitude: -3.285714
1:25K map: SJ1456
1:10K map: SJ15NW
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: Found whilst metal detecting
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: CPAT
Created: 7 years ago
Updated: 7 years ago

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