Rights Holder: Surrey County Council
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Unique ID: SUR-073AC0

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

A rectangular copper-alloy ingot, 24.4mm by 21.8mm and 4.4mm thick decorated with a deeply incised circular design, around 19mm in diameter, on one side. The design takes the form of a stylised human face, possibly female, with ovate eyes, triangular nose, a small mouth and deeply incised lines representing a hairstyle, within a double border of dots.

The decoration is deeply incised, however the depth of incision is not sufficient for the object to be used as a casting mould, with the raised areas of the face being nearly flush with the surface of the ingot and no pour channels being evident. This suggests a function as a die stamp.


This is likely to be an Anglo-Saxon die stamp for making preßblech foils for small decorative items. These generally fall into two groups; early examples used for bracteates and button or saucer brooches (late 5th-early 6th century) and later stamps for preßblech foils decorating a broader array of objects and fittings in the 6th or 7th century AD.

The diameter of the design is consistent with that of early 6th century button brooches. Examples of gilded button brooches with similar designs include HAMP-F4CAD3 and PUBLIC-61770D.

Find of note status

This is a find of note and has been designated: County / local importance

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: EARLY MEDIEVAL
Subperiod from: Early
Subperiod to: Early
Date from: Circa AD 500
Date to: Circa AD 600

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 24.4 mm
Width: 21.8 mm
Thickness: 4.4 mm
Weight: 14.3 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Thursday 1st February 2018

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Dr Simon Maslin
Identified by: Dr Simon Maslin

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Completeness: Complete

Spatial metadata

County or Unitary authority: Buckinghamshire (County)
District: Aylesbury Vale (District)
Parish or ward: Gawcott with Lenborough (Civil Parish)

Spatial coordinates

4 Figure: SP6932
Four figure Latitude: 51.98218494
Four figure longitude: -0.99673547
1:25K map: SP6932
1:10K map: SP63SE
Grid reference source: From finder
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 1 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
General landuse: Grassland, Heathland
Specific landuse: Undisturbed grassland

References cited

No references cited so far.

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: SUR
Created: 5 months ago
Updated: 3 months ago

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