ESS-0BD0C9: Post Medieval lead tokens

Rights Holder: Colchester and Ipswich Museum Service
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Unique ID: ESS-0BD0C9

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

Collection of possible Post Medieval lead tokens or counting or gaming chips. The artefacts are partially stuck together and form three stacks of thin, lead tokens, each with a design on both faces.

The tokens are circular, being approx. - in diameter. The design on both faces features a triple banded inner circle inside which there is an eights pointed star with a pellet in each point, and a flower in the centre. There are also decorative flourishes in the angles of each point outside of the star, as well as around the central flower.

The design outside of the inner circle features radiating linear tubular shapes interspersed with lines of dots composing a starburst pattern inside a beaded outer circle.

The remains of approximately 17 of these tokens (stuck together) can be seen.

The design on the face, particularly the floral motif, is suggestive of a Poat Medieval date, c. 1700 - 1900.

Dimensions: combined weight: 23.73g, average diameter: 32.7mm, thickness (of one token): 0.4mm


The exact purpose of the tokens is not know. It has been suggested that they could be gaming or counting chips, or even wine bottle capsules (T. Redmayne, pers comm). The latter suggestion is certainly possible as lead was used for bottle capsules until the 1980s. The radiating lines are also reminiscent of similar patterns found on the tips of bottle caps.

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: POST MEDIEVAL
Period from: POST MEDIEVAL
Date from: Circa AD 1700
Date to: Circa AD 1900

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 17
Thickness: 0.4 mm
Weight: 23.73 g
Diameter: 32.7 mm

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: Lead Alloy
Manufacture method: Struck or hammered
Completeness: Complete

Spatial data

No spatial data available.

References cited

No references cited so far.

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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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