SOM-7E75B7: Medieval harness pendant

Rights Holder: Somerset County Council
CC License:

Image use policy

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


Unique ID: SOM-7E75B7

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

Two complete copper alloy figurative harness pendants of 13th or 14th century date both in the form of an eagle.

One pendant appears lightly less worn or bettwen cast than the other and is therefore slightly larger. Both have a single loop at their apex which is perpendicular to the axis of the pendant. The pendants are in the shape of an eagle displayed with head to left and five openwork circles between the wings, legs and tail. The fronts have traces of gilding, the backs are flat and otherwise undecorated. The head of the bird is facing left with a prominent down turned triangular beak. The body of the bird on the larger example is 4.57mm wide and sub retangular, and is joined by two narrow legs 1.66mm wide and 1.29mm long that splay outwards at an angle of 45 degrees from the main body and terminate in feet formed of three projections. The widest part of the pendant across the top of the wings which project project forward slightly, and carry three longitudinal ridges along their length. The tail is fanned shaped and defined by the oval apertures.

The smaller of the two pendants is identical except that the eagle now has a more convex body, and only two sets of ribs along the wings. It is also more a shield shaped in profile than the larger example, with the tail and feet forming a prominant triangular pointed apex rather than the semi-circular base of the larger example.

The larger of the two pendants is 31.74mm long with a maximum width of 17.78mm, a thickness of 2.85mm, and a weight of 4.28g. The smaller pendant is is 29.89mm long, with a maximum width of 16.63mm, a thickness of 3.14mm and a weight of 3.73g.

The pendants may be armorial badges on a pendant and two similar badges are catalogued from Norfolk (Ashley, 2002, p. 26, nos. 2-3). Ashley (ibid.) states that the badges may have decorated something other than horse furniture, possibly livery collars and suggests a date c. AD 1200-1400.

Find of note status

This is a find of note and has been designated: County / local importance

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: MEDIEVAL
Period from: MEDIEVAL
Period to: MEDIEVAL
Date from: Circa AD 1200
Date to: Circa AD 1400

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 2
Weight: 8.01 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Friday 1st January 2016 - Thursday 20th October 2016

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Ms Susan Walker
Identified by: Ms Susan Walker
Secondary identifier: Ms Laura Burnett

Other reference numbers

Other reference: SCC receipt 017439

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Completeness: Complete
Surface Treatment: Gilded

Spatial metadata

County or Unitary authority: Dorset (County)
District: West Dorset (District)
Parish or ward: Sherborne (Civil Parish)

Spatial coordinates

4 Figure: ST6318
Four figure Latitude: 50.96022874
Four figure longitude: -2.52820251
1:25K map: ST6318
1:10K map: ST61NW
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 100 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
General landuse: Cultivated land

References cited

Similar objects

Find number: NMGW-35BBEC
Broadperiod: MEDIEVAL
Medieval copper alloy harness pendant of 13th or 14th century date The pendant is of figurative type, in the form of a bird and is complet…
Workflow: Awaiting validationFind awaiting validation

Find number: DEV-0E00C7
Broadperiod: MEDIEVAL
An incomplete copper alloy harness pendant in the form of an eagle dating from the Medieval period (c.AD1200-1400). The eagle faces left, wit…
Workflow: Awaiting validationFind awaiting validation

Find number: YORYM-86CB68
Broadperiod: MEDIEVAL
A complete copper-alloy harness pendant of medieval date, c.AD 1175 - 1400. The pendant is in the form of a forward facing bird, probably an …
Workflow: Awaiting validationFind awaiting validation

Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

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

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