SOM-7F1702: Post Medieval Stuart Enamel button

Rights Holder: Somerset County Council
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Unique ID: SOM-7F1702

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

Post-medieval cast copper alloy button with enamel decoration and integral shank of the 'Stuart enamel' type. The button is circular with a convex front and a concave back. The decoration on the front is moulded in relief and depicts a male, probably either Charles I or Charles II, facing forward, crowned, with long hair and wearing a cloak or robe decorated with a circle at the neck and a pellet on each shoulder. The background is decorated with pale blue enamel and the crown, neck ruffle and pellets either side of the head are picked out in white enamel. The face of the person is worn and so has lost any detail that may have been enamelled. from the cnetre of the plain back projects the integral rectangular shank which has a semi-circular top and a circular hole drilled through it. The button is 27.3mm in diameter, 11.2mm thick including the shank, 7.3mm excluding it and it weighs 9.81g.

Other similarly decorated buttons recorded on the PAS have a wide range of designs including zoomorphic (e.g. BH-DEE512) and, most commonly, flower designs (e.g. CORN-87AA74). This is the first to be recorded on the database of this specific design. Read (2010 2nd ed: 53-6) illustrates a range of similar buttons including no.197 showing a figure on horseback and nos.85-8 which show busts in profile, the latter have now lost their enamel but are similar in style.

Enamel decorated buttons were made by a brass foundry based in London specialising in enamels and this blue (and white) are the typical colours used (cf LANCUM-B0D5C3 for a discussion). While more elaborate product of this industry (previously known as Surrey Enamels) have been published (Blair 2005 and 2006) simpler, smaller items such as these buttons are currently being researched as more examples have come to light through the PAS. Read (ibid:44) suggests a mid 17th century day for this material.

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: POST MEDIEVAL
Period from: POST MEDIEVAL
Date from: Circa AD 1650
Date to: Circa AD 1700

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Thickness: 11.2 mm
Weight: 9.81 g
Diameter: 27.3 mm

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Wednesday 9th January 2013

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Ms Alice Forward
Identified by: Ms Laura Burnett
Secondary identifier: Ms Alice Forward

Other reference numbers

Other reference: SCC receipt 022345

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Manufacture method: Cast
Completeness: Complete
Surface Treatment: Inlaid with enamel

Spatial metadata

Region: South West (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Somerset (County)
District: Taunton Deane (District)
To be known as: West Monkton

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: Other
Specific landuse: Garden

References cited

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: SOM
Created: 5 years ago
Updated: 3 years ago

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