KENT-48B7D7: Gilt-Silver Tudor Dress fastener

Rights Holder: Kent County Council
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Unique ID: KENT-48B7D7

Object type certainty: Certain
Workflow status: Published Find published

A cast silver gilt 'looped' portion of a dress fastener, dating c.1500-1650.

Description: The item is sub-triangular in shape and is formed from a chubby head with wings or vegetative elements sprouting from the crown of the head. Above the head between the sprouting elements is a large open loop, into which the hook part of the garment fastener would slide. From the lower sides of head are two smaller attachment loops, through which thread would pass to sew the fastener into a garment. These are formed from acanthus or other vegative loops sprouting from the side of the head and looping downwards and joining at the mouth. In between these two smaller loops is a small knop.

The item appears to have been cast in moulded relief, and the detailing of the eyes nose and mouth and cheek are all clearly defined. The surface is gilded though much of this has worn off. The back of the fastener is flat, plain and undecorated.

Measurements: 10.34mm wide, 13.04mm long, 2.82mm thick and 1g in weight.

Discussion: There have been many examples of similar dress fasteners of this kind previously recorded on the Portable Antiquities Scheme database. Most, however are more obviously cherubs, this example maybe intended to be a cherub looking out of foliage or a green man type figure. Most of them are silver gilt and have been declared Treasure. See records ESS-205795, BERK-B461DA, ESS-F12A68, DOR-9D6C65, ESS-FBAA23, SF-4908E1, HESH-09C581. Artefacts if this type can be compared with similar 16th century Tudor artefacts that were used as garment fasteners (Gaimster et. al. 2002) but were likely used through the following century.

Subsequent actions

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

Treasure details

Treasure case tracking number: 2017T456


Broad period: POST MEDIEVAL
Subperiod from: Middle
Period from: POST MEDIEVAL
Subperiod to: Middle
Date from: Circa AD 1500
Date to: Circa AD 1650

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 13.04 mm
Width: 10.34 mm
Thickness: 2.82 mm
Weight: 1 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Sunday 26th March 2017

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Mr Jo Ahmet
Identified by: Mr Jo Ahmet

Other reference numbers

Treasure case number: 2017T456

Materials and construction

Primary material: Silver
Manufacture method: Cast
Decoration style: Figurative
Completeness: Complete
Surface Treatment: Gilded

Spatial metadata

Region: South East (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Kent (County)
District: Shepway (District)
Parish or ward: Elham (Civil Parish)

Spatial coordinates

4 Figure: TR1747
Four figure Latitude: 51.18102938
Four figure longitude: 1.10345631
1:25K map: TR1747
1:10K map: TR14NE
Grid reference source: Generated from computer mapping software
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 1 metre square.

References cited

Similar objects

Find number: ESS-043FC4
Broadperiod: POST MEDIEVAL
A cast silver gilt 'looped' portion of a dress fastener. The item is sub-triangular in shape and is formed of the head and wings of a cherub.…
Workflow: PublishedFind published

Find number: ESS-1DE792
Broadperiod: POST MEDIEVAL
Description: Post Medieval silver-gilt 'eye' element from a two piece hooked clasp. The fitting is circular in plan with a 'D' shaped loop ex…
Workflow: PublishedFind published

Find number: SF-4908E1
Broadperiod: POST MEDIEVAL
Description: Silver-gilt cast dress fitting in the form of a cherub's head with flanking wings. There are three integral loops around the fac…
Workflow: PublishedFind published

Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: KENT
Created: About one year ago
Updated: About one year ago

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