SOM-2CA6EA: Post Medieval silver buckle or Strap fitting

Rights Holder: Somerset County Council
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Unique ID: SOM-2CA6EA

Object type certainty: Certain
Workflow status: Published Find published

Treasure case: 2016 T1060; returned to finder having been disclaimed as Treasure.

Description: A probably Post Medieval silver buckle or strap fitting with elaborate decoration and one old break. The piece has, at the centre, two oval loops with a bar between them. The loops are emphasised by an incised line on the front running around the middle of each side and down the central bar.

Around the outside of the central loops is an elaborate, openwork decoration in the form of an outer line border with raised knops projecting out from it. At the centre of each loop and at either end of the central bar are larger projections formed of curved lines with curled ends flanking an openwork triangle on a stem with, at the outer point of the triangle, a rounded bud decorated with incised parallel lines and a small knop on top. Each of these four projections has three drilled circular holes through it, flanking the stem and at the centre of the triangle. Between these main projections are four smaller projections in the form of small buds, again with incised lines and a pellet at the top.

The piece is slightly domed with the highest point being the central bar and all the edges curved downwards. One projection at the centre of one loop has broken off. The break is patinated but the pieces were found together.

Dimensions: The piece is 33.8mm long including the broken fragment by 23.6mm wide and up to 3.5mm thick ignoring the curve; it weighs 1.84g.

Discussion: This is an unusual piece without exact parallels in the usual sources. The decoration on the central bar and domed profile suggests it might be a strap fitting such as a strap slide, rather than a buckle. However it has similarities to early Post Medieval buckles with elaborated edges which can be highly variable in their design such as Read (1988: 111), Nos.694 which are dated from the 16th century to the early 17th century. Whitehead (1996:80) illustrates similar examples which he dates to c.1620-1690 and CORN-18F5A5 on the PAS database, all in copper alloy.

The fitting appears to consist of over 10% precious metal and be over 300 years old at the time of finding and as such qualifies as potential Treasure under the stipulations of the Treasure Act 1996.

Laura Burnett
Finds Liaison Officer for Somerset
February 2017

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder after being disclaimed as Treasure

Treasure details

Treasure case tracking number: 2016T1060


Broad period: POST MEDIEVAL
Period from: POST MEDIEVAL
Date from: Circa AD 1500
Date to: Circa AD 1690

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 23.8 mm
Width: 23.6 mm
Thickness: 3.5 mm
Weight: 1.84 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Saturday 1st October 2016 - Monday 31st October 2016

Personal details

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Other reference numbers

Treasure case number: 2016T1060

Materials and construction

Primary material: Silver
Completeness: Complete

Spatial metadata

County or Unitary authority: Dorset (County)
District: North Dorset (District)
To be known as: Stalbridge CP

Spatial coordinates

Grid reference source: From finder
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 100 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: SOM
Created: 5 years ago
Updated: 5 years ago

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