NMS-515C15: Pendant

Rights Holder: The Portable Antiquities Scheme
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Rights Holder: Norfolk County Council
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Unique ID: NMS-515C15

Object type certainty: Certain
Workflow status: Published Find published

Description: Sheet and filigree wire disc pendant made from pale gold. Circular sheet with a border of applied beaded wire around the edge, now broken in several places and with a short length missing. There is a large central circular setting, now empty, made from an upright strip of gold which has been very neatly soldered to the circular backplate. From this extend four small, evenly spaced U-shaped pieces of beaded wire, alternating with four large U-shaped pieces of beaded wire which extend from the outer edge of the pendant to the edge of the central setting, thus creating a cruciform motif. Only a fragment of the ribbed gold sheet suspension loop survives, soldered onto the otherwise plain reverse of the sheet disc. The surviving fragment of suspension loop is 6mm wide; it has four ridges and five grooves running along its length, and is cut to a double point. The suspension loop is on the reverse of one of the larger U shapes.

The beaded wire has been made using a swage (a grooved tool which is rolled over the wire), leaving a clear medial seam (or Äquatorschnitt) on most of the beads; this central groove has worn away on the upper edge, but wear on the filigree in general is not heavy. In two places, on one of the small and one of the large U shapes, one end of the wire has not been beaded, and on the small U there is what appears to be the start of a loose spiral groove, perhaps showing that the wire has been made by block-twisting (Whitfield 1990, 14-18). The diameter of the wire on the outer border is 1.0mm, and that on the U shapes is in general a maximum of 0.86mm.

Dimensions: Diameter 30mm from missing loop downwards, 28mm from side to side. Weight 3.7g.

Discussion: Gold filigree-decorated disc pendants are a well known but not common seventh-century type. Parallels on the PAS database include ESS-7E4F06, ESS-450B96, SF-B6EFA1 and NLM5404; excavated examples include several from Lechlade (graves 84, 95 and 179) and a remarkable set from Boss Hall 93 (Scull 2009, 17-18, 43, 99-101). There is considerable variation between different filigree pendants, but some similarities including U-shaped cross-elements, can be found between NMS-515C15, SF-B6EFA1, the Boss Hall group, and two of three, perhaps from a single grave, found at Milton Regis in Kent (Webster and Backhouse 1991, 36a and c).

Date: Many of the grave finds of gold filigree pendants are associated with other objects suggesting a date in the second half of the 7th century AD (Geake 1997, 38).


As the object is made of more than 10% precious metal and is over 300 years old, it constitutes potential Treasure under the Treasure Act 1996.

Subsequent actions

Current location of find: King's Lynn Museum
Subsequent action after recording: Acquired by museum after being declared Treasure

Treasure details

Treasure case tracking number: 2012T346


Broad period: EARLY MEDIEVAL
Subperiod from: Early
Subperiod to: Early
Ascribed Culture: Anglo-Saxon
Date from: Circa AD 650
Date to: Circa AD 700

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Height: 30 mm
Weight: 3.7 g
Diameter: 28 mm

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Saturday 31st March 2012 - Saturday 31st March 2012

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Mrs Erica Darch
Identified by: Mrs Erica Darch
Secondary identifier: Dr Helen Geake

Other reference numbers

SMR reference number: 57181
Treasure case number: 2012T346

Materials and construction

Primary material: Gold
Completeness: Incomplete

Spatial metadata

Region: Eastern (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Norfolk (County)
District: Breckland (District)
To be known as: Oxborough

Spatial coordinates

Grid reference source: Centred on field
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 10 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
Current location: King's Lynn Museum
General landuse: Cultivated land

References cited

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: NMS
Created: 7 years ago
Updated: 5 years ago

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