NMS-A664F2: Copper alloy Medieval book fitting

Rights Holder: Norfolk County Council
CC License:

Rights Holder: Norfolk County Council
CC License:

Image use policy

Our images can be used under a CC BY attribution licence (unless stated otherwise).


Unique ID: NMS-A664F2

Object type certainty: Certain
Workflow status: Published Find published

Part of an elaborate medieval copper alloy book clasp, comprising an openwork oval plate formed by two confronted wyverns (slightly hollowed on reverse), both with a dog-like head gripping the end of a narrowed bar for a strap. The wyverns both have wings molded on their backs, and the legs intertwined with pelleted (possible) tails around a central hole which would have fitted over a pin set into the wooden book cover. A stylised animal-head with a perforation through the snout forms a terminal loop, through which a cord would have been threaded. Length 49mm. Width 25mm. Thickness of body 3.5mm, of terminal head 5.5mm. Weight 14.45g.

Cf. an even more elaborate book-clasp of related form and date, also with interlaced wyverns, from Quidenham, Norfolk (HER 35413), illustrated in Ashley 2016 'Anglo-Norman Elite Objects from Castle and Countryside', fig. 18.5, no. 25. For later examples of similar book clasps see Egan (1998) Medieval Household, fig.214.

This clasp probably fits best into Howsam's type A.1.3.

Find of note status

This has been noted as an interesting find by the recorder.

Class: clasp
Sub class: Howsam type A.1.3

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: MEDIEVAL
Period from: MEDIEVAL
Period to: MEDIEVAL
Date from: Circa AD 1100
Date to: Circa AD 1200

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 49 mm
Width: 25 mm
Thickness: 5.5 mm
Weight: 14.45 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Thursday 13th November 2014 - Wednesday 10th December 2014

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Mr Steven Ashley
Identified by: Mr Steven Ashley

Other reference numbers

SMR reference number: 45326
Other reference: AMD122014

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Completeness: Complete

Spatial metadata

County or Unitary authority: Norfolk (County)
District: Broadland (District)
To be known as: Marsham

Spatial coordinates

Grid reference source: From finder
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 10 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
General landuse: Cultivated land

References cited

Similar objects

Find number: NMS-0BD8D3
Object type: BOOK FITTING
Broadperiod: MEDIEVAL
Part of a medieval copper alloy book clasp: twin lugs at the attachment-end with drilled holes containing a separate copper alloy bar for the …
Workflow: Awaiting validationFind awaiting validation

Find number: KENT-E3FF15
Object type: BOOK FITTING
Broadperiod: MEDIEVAL
One element of a worn copper-alloy Medieval book clasp, dating to the 12th century AD. Description: The object is formed by a roughly circula…
Workflow: Awaiting validationFind awaiting validation

Find number: NMS-2256B4
Broadperiod: MEDIEVAL
Incomplete medieval copper alloy furniture fitting, hasp with granular break at upper end (terminal missing) of an elaborately moulded but fl…
Workflow: Awaiting validationFind awaiting validation

Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: NMS
Created: 4 years ago
Updated: 2 months ago

Other formats: this page is available as qrcode json xml geojson pdf rdf representations.