YORYM-9624E2: Early-Medieval : Weight

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Unique ID: YORYM-9624E2

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

A complete lead-alloy weight with gilded copper-alloy insert of Early-Medieval date, c.AD 800 - 1100. The weight is circular in plan with a rectangular section and is inset with a disc of copper-alloy on the upper surface. The disc bears chip-carved decoration featuring a right facing beast, or bird, head. The beast has a long hook curved beak, ovate head with a single pellet eye, and a long curving neck. The field behind the beast features wavering grooves. The recessed areas of the decoration retain substantial gilding. A ring of red coloured staining encircles the disc and may represent the remains of further decoration colouring the lead-alloy. The base of the weight is flat and undecorated.

The weight is 20.2mm in diameter, 9.7mm thick and weighs 26.4g.

The copper-alloy fragment is likely to be middle or late Anglo-Saxon in date, but it is difficult to parallel due to its fragmentary nature. Numerous Viking weights are known which have earlier pieces of metalwork, often with insular decoration, reused by setting into the top of the weight. Parallels recorded with the Portable Antiquities Scheme include: LANCUM-107126, SWYOR-4F2B32, SWYOR-CC1E24, LANCUM-45FF34, LVPL1684 and NMS-03F926. Examples have also been recorded from the Viking winter camp at Torksey, Lincolnshire (see: Blackburn, M. (2011) The Viking Winter Camp at Torksey, 827-3. In: Blackburn, M ed. Viking Coinage and Currency in the British Isles. London: Spink, pp.221-264).

Such weights are an insular Viking phenomenon believed to have been used for weighing precious metals while trading in the Viking period. Standardised weight sets featuring polyhedral and truncated sphere weights were commonly used in Scandinavia and were brought over to England. The need for such objects increased leading to the production of these personalised weight sets which used fragmentary insular artefacts as decorative and identifiable insets.

Find of note status

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

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: EARLY MEDIEVAL
Subperiod from: Middle
Subperiod to: Late
Date from: Circa AD 800
Date to: Circa AD 1100

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Thickness: 9.7 mm
Weight: 26.4 g
Diameter: 20.2 mm

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Mrs Rebecca Griffiths
Identified by: Mrs Rebecca Griffiths

Other reference numbers

Other reference: YMT : E05246

Materials and construction

Primary material: Lead Alloy
Secondary material: Copper alloy
Decoration style: Zoomorphic
Completeness: Complete
Surface Treatment: Gilded

Spatial metadata

Region: Yorkshire and the Humber (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: East Riding of Yorkshire (Unitary Authority)
District: East Riding of Yorkshire (Unitary Authority)
Parish or ward: North Cave (Civil Parish)

Spatial coordinates

4 Figure: SE8932
Four figure Latitude: 53.77673748
Four figure longitude: -0.65094738
1:25K map: SE8932
1:10K map: SE83SE
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
Specific landuse: Character undetermined

References cited

No references cited so far.

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: YORYM
Created: About one year ago
Updated: 3 months ago

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