WILT-8171F0: Bronze Age arrowhead

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Unique ID: WILT-8171F0

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

An almost-complete copper alloy Bronze Age (1275-1140 BC) flat arrowhead.Cast in a two piece mould, this arrowhead is barbed and tanged in form, with the two sides forming an angle of approximately 25-30 degrees. It is 26.85mm long, 19.2mm wide from barb to barb, 2.00mm thick and weighs 2.54g. The tang is incomplete and measures c.4.55mm long, 5.45mm wide and 1.55mm thick. The arrowhead has a very low mid ridge, giving the object a lozengiform cross-section.

There is only one bronze arrowhead from a secure Bronze Age context in Britain and that was in the Penard hoard, first reported in Archaeologica 71, page 138. The Penard arrowhead is not flat, but has a mid rib. At the time of its discovery it was a unique find in Britain and was presumed to be an import as there are numerous finds of bronze arrowheads recorded from Northern France.

However, thanks to an increase in the number of reported metal detected finds, Bronze Age bronze arrowheads are now growing in number, though they remain a rare group of artefact. Dr Colin Pendleton reports that Suffolk has 17 known examples, of which 5 can be termed barbed and tanged. Norfolk has at least 4 recorded and more examples are being added to the database from around the country. This suggests that bronze arrowheads were also a British tradition.

Though the barbed and tanged form was used in flint from the Early Bronze Age to the Middle Bronze Age, the evidence from Penard, which dates from 1275-1140 BC, suggests that copper alloy arrowheads did not come into fashion until later in the Middle Bronze Age. Therefore this is the suggested date range for this arrowhead.

A similar arrowhead albeit with a mid rib rather than a mid ridge is WILT-6B6CD4. Also ESS-A41D75 is similar but only has a mid ridge on one side.

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: BRONZE AGE
Subperiod from: Late
Period from: BRONZE AGE
Subperiod to: Late
Period to: BRONZE AGE
Date from: Circa 1275 BC
Date to: Circa 1140 BC

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 26.84 mm
Width: 19.12 mm
Thickness: 2 mm
Weight: 2.54 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Friday 4th March 2016

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Mrs Claire Goodey
Identified by: Mrs Claire Goodey

Other reference numbers

Other reference: 4744

Materials and construction

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

Spatial metadata

Region: South West (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Dorset (County)
District: West Dorset (District)
To be known as: Frampton

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

No references cited so far.

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: WILT
Created: 2 years ago
Updated: 2 years ago

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