BM-4CB2AF:  BM-4CB2AF: Roman finger ring

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Unique ID: BM-4CB2AF

Object type certainty: Certain
Workflow status: Published Find published

Two fragments of an copper-alloy finger ring, with melted glass setting in imitation of an intaglio dating to the late second or third century . The fragments comprise most of the hoop, one shoulder and the bezel with its setting. The hoop is lentoidal in section and expands to form an exaggerated shoulder, before narrowing again to meet the bezel. The bezel is oval in plan and cylindrical in section, with a setting for a gem. This setting is filled with a melted glass bead in two shades of red on which is stamped a ?dancing figure advancing left. For similar 'Romano-British imitation' intaglios showing standing human figures see Henig 1978, 133 and 255, nos. 539-543 and especially 552 from Great Chesterford, Essex. No. 1786 from Colchester (Crummy 1983, 48-49) also possesses a similar intaglio. The bezel measures 13.74mm in length, 11.05mm in width and 5.66mm thick. The glass setting has a length of 11mm and a width of 7.81mm. The fragment of hoop measures 16.91mm in length, a maximum of 7.76mm in width and 2.27mm in thickness. Combined, the two fragments weigh 4.2 grams.

Although broken into two pieces, this example appears to have had the distinct shoulder and raised bezel of Guiraud's (1989) Type 3C (Henig (2007) Type VIII), dating from the late 2nd to late 3rd centuries. Rings of this type could be elaborately decorated, made of precious metals with cameo or gemstone settings (Guiraud, 1989, p. 185), but this iron example with a glass intaglio is rather more prosaic. The use of an intaglio is also less common in this type, as the shoulder is a weak point when using it as a seal ring (Guiraud, 1989, p. 185).


SF 153. Seen 1.5.18

Class: Guiraud Type 3c

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: ROMAN
Subperiod from: Late
Period from: ROMAN
Subperiod to: Late
Period to: ROMAN
Date from: Circa AD 175
Date to: Circa AD 250

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 2
Weight: 4.2 g

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Dr Philippa Walton
Identified by: Dr Philippa Walton

Other reference numbers

Other reference: Box 5, Bag 1

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Secondary material: Glass
Completeness: Fragment

Spatial metadata

Region: North East (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Darlington (Unitary Authority)
District: Darlington (Unitary Authority)
Parish or ward: Piercebridge (Civil Parish)

Spatial coordinates

4 Figure: NZ2115
Four figure Latitude: 54.52984883
Four figure longitude: -1.67701825
1:25K map: NZ2115
1:10K map: NZ21NW
Grid reference source: From finder
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 10 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Other chance find
Discovery circumstances: While diving in the River Tees
General landuse: Open fresh water

References cited

No references cited so far.

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: BM
Created: 4 years ago
Updated: 11 months ago

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