ESS-56EE7A: Bronze Age Copper Alloy Chisel

Rights Holder: Colchester and Ipswich Museum Service
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Unique ID: ESS-56EE7A

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

The item is possibly a copper-alloy Bronze Age (c. 1500 - 1150BC) small chisel or awl. The blade is square in cross section and tapers to a flat edge. One side of the blade tapers slightly more, making the edge on one side thinner and forming a slight concavity on this side.
At the widest end of the blade there is an integral stop ridge which is semi-circular in plan and is partially broken. It would have been fully circular originally. It emerges perpendicular to the blade and tang, and is about 1.6mm thick. The blade protrudes from the centre of the face of this stop ridge on one face, and the tang protrudes directly opposite from the centre of the stop ridge on the other face.

The tang is square in cross-section and like the blade, tapers in thickness. The tang, however, ends in a blunt edge, and there is possibly some of the tang end missing.

The object is almost identical to another recorded on the database (WAW-EF4C84) which is dated to the Middle Bronze Age. Though this example is significantly smaller, and also shows evidence of potential gilding and/or decoration on one face of the tang. It is possible that this was caused by insertion into or contact with another item which was decorated in this way, though it is not certain. If it is a chisel or awl, it was almost certainly used for small-scale metal-working.

Dimensions: weight: 8.14g, length: 65.6mm, length of blade: 38.8mm, length of tang: 25.8mm, thickness of blade: 6.1mm, thickness of tang: 5.8mm, diameter of stop ridge: 13.7mm


Other examples of similar items on the database include: YORYM-8CDEB3, WILT-232C22

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: BRONZE AGE
Period from: BRONZE AGE
Period to: BRONZE AGE
Date from: Circa 1500 BC
Date to: Circa 1150 BC

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 65.6 mm
Width: 13.7 mm
Thickness: 6.1 mm
Weight: 8.14 g

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Ms Sophie Flynn
Identified by: Ms Sophie Flynn

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Manufacture method: Cast
Completeness: Complete

Spatial metadata

Region: Eastern (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Suffolk (County)
District: Babergh (District)
To be known as: Holbrook

Spatial coordinates

Grid reference source: Centred on field
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.

Similar objects

Find number: WAW-EF4C84
Object type: CHISEL
Broadperiod: BRONZE AGE
The object is either a chisel or an awl, made of cast copper alloy. The chisel has a blade which is square in section and tapers in thickness …
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Find number: YORYM-8CDEB3
Object type: CHISEL
Broadperiod: BRONZE AGE
An incomplete copper alloy chisel or awl of Bronze Age date. The tang is square in section and tapers in both width and thickness to a rounde…
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Find number: BERK-D3E079
Object type: CHISEL
Broadperiod: BRONZE AGE
A complete cast copper-alloy tanged chisel of Late Bronze Age date. The chisel is in good copndition and appears undamaged, with evidence for…
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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

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

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