DEV-9AB065: Late early-medieval strap-end

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Unique ID: DEV-9AB065

Object type certainty: Certain
Workflow status: Published Find published

A worn late early-medieval copper-alloy strap-end of Thomas's Class E, Type 5, culturally Carolingian (c. 10th century).

The strap-end is tongue shaped, with a recessed attachment end with two circular perforations, and terminating in a broad curve at the other end. The recessed step at the attachment end is on the reverse, with a 'ledge' below it; the strap-end thins from this point towards the terminal, attaining a constant thickness after a gradual thinning. The front of the strap end is decorated, cast in relief, with a floriated cross dominating the field within a raised border. Each terminal of the cross bifurcates with main fronds curving out, probably stylised acanthus. The main fronds on each cross of the arm meet and are connected by chevron bars. Due to the form of the strap-end the cross arm at the terminal is more squashed and therefore less developed. By contrast, that at the attachment end has openwork elements on the main fronds and a V-shaped extension from its tip. The centre of the cross is decorated with engraved linear designs, including pairs of parallel lines on the shorter cross limbs towards the centre of the cross. Towards the centre of each of the longer cross limbs is a C-shaped line with its rounded side pointing towards the cross terminal. On the longer limb closest to the attachment end a central longitudinal line extends from this towards the centre, much as with the parallel lines mentioned.

Dimensions: length 34.4 mm; width 20.9 mm; thickness 4.3 mm; weight 10.02 g.

The design on this strap-end can be compared, in a very general way, with an example found in Claydon, Suffolk, and illustrated in Thomas (2004, 3; fig. 4, no. 31). This bears the stylised acanthus fronds that are typical of Carolingian strap-ends and other dress accessories.

The strap-end has been marked as a Find of Note (regional importance) due to the relative lack of Carolingian material found in the South West.


This record is based on photographs and notes taken at a Finds Day and may thus fall below our usual standards for recording. Thanks must be extended to Brian Read, for providing the attached illustration as well as to the illustrator, Carmodie Collins.

Find of note status

This is a find of note and has been designated: Regional importance

Class: Thomas Class E, Type 5

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: EARLY MEDIEVAL
Subperiod from: Late
Subperiod to: Late
Ascribed Culture: Carolingian
Date from: Circa AD 900
Date to: Circa AD 1000

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 34.4 mm
Width: 20.9 mm
Thickness: 4.3 mm
Weight: 10.02 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Monday 13th March 2017 - Monday 13th March 2017

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Mr Wil Partridge
Identified by: Mr Wil Partridge
Secondary identifier: Mr Robert Webley

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Completeness: Complete

Spatial metadata

Region: South West (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Somerset (County)
District: Taunton Deane (District)
To be known as: Bickenhall CP

Spatial coordinates

Grid reference source: Generated from computer mapping software
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 1 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
General landuse: Cultivated land
Specific landuse: Character undetermined

References cited

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

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

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