SUSS-EE599E: An incomplete Early-Medieval (Anglo-Saxon) copper-alloy and gilded button brooch (c. 450 - c. 550).

Rights Holder: The Portable Antiquities Scheme
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BROOCH

Unique ID: SUSS-EE599E

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

An incomplete Early-Medieval (Anglo-Saxon) copper-alloy and gilded button brooch (c. 450 - c. 550).

The pin, pin mechanism and most of the rim are missing.

This brooch is sub-circular in plan and the surviving part of the rim (about 20%) is upturned and flares outwards at an angle of about 45°.

The upper surface of the brooch is decorated with a central chip-carved anthropomorphic forward facing mask, within a raised circular border. The 'helmet' (or possibly hair) is formed of a curved line with a circle in the middle. The eyebrows and nose are formed of a single element and the nose is a sub-triangular shape. Both eyes are sub-triangular. The horizontal mouth is formed from two pointed-ovals. The rear of the brooch is flat with a curved periphery. On the rear there is the remains of a small lug.

All the decorative features are well defined.


This brooch has traces of gilding on the front. The surface at the rear is uneven and has green patina.

The brooch measures 17.5mm diameter 2.7mm thick with rim, 1.2mm thick without. The remaining lug and brooch is 4.1mm thick. The brooch weighs 2.49 grams.


Button brooches are distinguished by their small size and by the anthropomorphic face-masks which they feature. They may have been used in different ways as dress fasteners. It is thought that they may have been used singly rather than in pairs like the similar but larger saucer brooches. Button brooches are found throughout much of southern England and date between the later fifth and mid-sixth centuries.


This example is a Suzuki Class A1 (Suzuki 2008: 145-152, plates 1-30).

Suzuki, S. 2008. Anglo-Saxon Button Brooches. Typology, Genealogy, Chronolgy. Woodbridge: The Boydell Press.

Class: button

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder

Chronology

Broad period: EARLY MEDIEVAL
Subperiod from: Early
Period from: EARLY MEDIEVAL
Subperiod to: Early
Period to: EARLY MEDIEVAL
Date from: Circa AD 450
Date to: Circa AD 550

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Weight: 2.49 g
Diameter: 17.5 mm

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Friday 23rd September 2016 - Friday 23rd September 2016

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Ms Liz Walker
Identified by: Ms Liz Walker

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Manufacture method: Cast
Completeness: Incomplete
Surface Treatment: Gilded

Spatial metadata


County or Unitary authority: East Sussex (County)
District: Lewes (District)
Parish or ward: South Heighton (Civil Parish)

Spatial coordinates

4 Figure: TQ4602
Four figure Latitude: 50.79917667
Four figure longitude: 0.07040509
1:25K map: TQ4602
1:10K map: TQ40SE
Grid reference source: GPS (from the finder)
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 1 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
Discovery circumstances: Date is that first reported and recorded
General landuse: Cultivated land
Specific landuse: Character undetermined

References cited

No references cited so far.

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: SUSS
Created: 2 years ago
Updated: About one year ago

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