LVPL-5B063D: Roman key handle

Rights Holder: National Museums Liverpool
CC License:

Image use policy

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


Unique ID: LVPL-5B063D

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

An incomplete copper alloy composite rotary key dating to the Roman period, (c. 150-c. 410).

The key has an incomplete openwork handle which terminates with a break along the projections of the handle frame. The socket is square-sectioned and cylindrical inside.Each face of the socket has moulded parallel ribs and grooves as decoration.The depth of the cylinder within the remaining socket is 16mm and is 13mm in diameter. This socket would have accommodated a separate stem which was probably made of copper-alloy as there is no iron staining around the opening. The object has a mid-brown patina.

Dimensions: 36mm in length, 21mm in width, 10mm thick, 24.5g

Examples of similar key handles which can be found on the PAS database include IOW-C9B1A6 IOW-60EDD3 and SF-95C3EF

A similar key handle with fleur-de-lis openwork has been discovered at Colchester and key handles of this type have been dated to postAD 150 (Crummy 1983: 126, fig. 142, ref: 4161).

Crummy, N. 1983. The Roman Small Finds from excavations in Colchester 1971-9. Colchester Archaeological Report 2. Colchester Archaeological Trust. Colchester.

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: ROMAN
Period from: ROMAN
Period to: ROMAN
Date from: Circa AD 150
Date to: Circa AD 400

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 36 mm
Width: 21 mm
Thickness: 10 mm
Weight: 24.5 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Friday 1st September 2017 - Friday 13th October 2017

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Ms Vanessa Oakden
Identified by: Ms Vanessa Oakden

Materials and construction

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

Spatial metadata

Region: North West (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Cheshire West and Chester (Unitary Authority)
District: Cheshire West and Chester (Unitary Authority)
To be known as: Horton-cum-Peel

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

No references cited so far.

Similar objects

Find number: IOW-C9B1A6
Object type: KEY (LOCKING)
Broadperiod: ROMAN
An incomplete probable Roman copper-alloy composite rotary key (c. 150-c. 410). This key, now in two pieces, has an elaborate openwork handle…
Workflow: PublishedFind published

Find number: IOW-60EDD3
Object type: KEY (LOCKING)
Broadperiod: ROMAN
An incomplete Roman copper-alloy composite rotary key (c. AD 150-410). Only the handle survives, while the stem and bit are missing. The h…
Workflow: PublishedFind published

Find number: IOW-68CF4D
Object type: KEY (LOCKING)
Broadperiod: ROMAN
A Roman cast copper alloy composite handle (AD150-409). The key is incomplete with only the elaborate openwork trilobate or 'fleur-de-lis'…
Workflow: Awaiting validationFind awaiting validation

Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

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

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