WMID-916283: WMID-916283: Early Medieval: Holmegard/Kragehul type Sword Pommel

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Unique ID: WMID-916283

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

A complete cast copper alloy Holmegard / Kragehul type sword pommel, of Early Medieval dating (5th to 6th Centuries AD).
The sword pommel is sub boat-shaped with an enlarged trapezoidal central section, with two broad flutes between three double incised lines on both faces.

Both flanking 'arms' have upper edges, which curve gently downwards the terminal and have four double incised lines between four broad flutes on both faces that continue over the narrow upper edge.

The base is flat. There is a tapering vertical rectangular perforation for the missing tang (tapering upwards from 9.92 mm x 3.80 mm to 8.70 mm x 3.18 mm).

The pommel measures 63.19 mm in length, 12.00 mm in height and 10.07 mm thick. It weighs 17.4 grams.

The pommel is a mid to dark green colour, with an even surface patina.

A similar pommel, but with more obvious animal-head terminals, has been recorded on the PAS database as NMS-C48232. A less elaborately decorated example of a similar form is illustrated in Davidson (1962, Plate VI, 33c) with two animal heads flanking a central projection. The original is in E. Behmer 1939 (Das Zweischneidige Schwert der Germanischen Volkerwanderungszeit).

Menghin (1983, 64) says: 'Tierkopfendige Knäufe der Form Holmegard-Kragehul (Liste 1, 1d. 14-28) sind in der Masse ihres Vorkommens an skandinavische Fundorte gebunden und kennzeichnen Behmers Typ V. Eines der wenigen kontinentalen, mit den skandinavischen Exemplaren vergleichbaren Beispiele stammt aus dem Brandgrab von Perlberg und gehört wohl dem frühen 5. Jahrhundert an, während der Schwertknauf aus Schretzheim Grab 301 (Liste 1, 1d. 27) mit Sicherheit in das 6. Jahrhundert zu datieren ist.' (Animal head-ended pommels of the form Holmegard-Kragehul are, in the mass of their occurrence in Scandinavian findspots, bound to and characterising Behmer's type V. One of the few continental examples comparable with the Scandinavian examples comes from the cremation grave from Perlberg and is early 5th century, while the sword pommel from Schretzheim 301 is datable with certainty to the 6th century.) Of Menghin's list, one comes from Sweden, two from Norway, eight from Denmark, two from Schleswig and two from further south in Germany (Perlberg and Schretzheim).

None of the four illustrated examples in Menghin (1983, 308) closely resemble the English finds. Another pommel of Holmegard-Kragehul type, different again, is known from Cambridgeshire, SF7865.

Menghin (1983, Das schwert im frühen mittelalter) says 'Animal-head-ended pommels of type Holmegard/Kragehul are [largely found?] deposited in Scandinavian find-spots and are designated as Behmer's type V. One of the rare continental examples, comparable with the Scandinavian examples, comes from the cremation grave from Perlberg and belongs really to the early 5th century, while the sword pommel from Schretzheim grave 301 can safely be dated in the 6th century.' p. 64 (translation and additional information H. Geake).

Find of note status

This is a find of note and has been designated: Regional importance

Class: pommel
Sub class: Holmegard/Kragehul type

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: EARLY MEDIEVAL
Date from: Circa AD 425
Date to: Circa AD 600

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 63.19 mm
Height: 12 mm
Thickness: 10.07 mm
Weight: 17.4 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Wednesday 1st August 2012 - Friday 31st August 2012

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Miss Teresa Gilmore
Identified by: Miss Teresa Gilmore

Materials and construction

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

Spatial metadata

Region: West Midlands (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Warwickshire (County)
District: Stratford-on-Avon (District)
Parish or ward: Compton Verney (Civil Parish)

Spatial coordinates

4 Figure: SP3154
Four figure Latitude: 52.183383
Four figure longitude: -1.548012
1:25K map: SP3154
1:10K map: SP35SW
Grid reference source: From a paper map
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

References cited

No references cited so far.

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: WMID
Created: 5 years ago
Updated: 5 years ago

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