NMS-7F2640: Undated Casting waste

Rights Holder: Garry Crace
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Unique ID: NMS-7F2640

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

Large amorphous-shaped piece of copper alloy, possible casting waste. The waste does not contain any evidence of slag or mineral ore within it's surface contours and is not from a refining process. It has solidified unfettered from the molten state and may possibly be associated with casting or industrial activity hereabouts. No metallurgical investigation has been carried out and the object remains un-dateable. A good deal of similar material has been found in the plough-zone of the fields in the vicinity of this find and further information and context is discussed in the notes section of this record.


These fragments of casting waste are something of an enigma. Without exaggeration hundreds of pieces of this material have been found over the years by the Sussex Pastfinders search team. Sizes range from fingernail to fist size and the geographic spread is in almost every field that has been searched on the permission. It is unlikely therefore that this material is being found at the point of production but is perhaps more likely to have been spread on the fields from a central source elsewhere. Since it is only ever found in the plough-zone and not the natural, it is possible, or even probable, that it has been distributed by long term manuring activity. Melting copper alloy for whatever purpose would require significant knowledge and apparatus and if used in casting would also be expected to leave other similarly distributed tell tale process signs in the landscape, for example sprues, runners, risers, mould fragments, production rejects etc none of which has ever been found. No evidence of scrap remelting, where vestiges of former artefacts are evident frozen in the melt has ever been recovered either. The surface of the material is always devoid of obvious inclusions such as slag, or minerals and material spread is also found across adjacent ancient land boundaries such as the Parish division and those of the former Cluniac Priory.

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder


Broad period: UNKNOWN
Period from: BRONZE AGE

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 70 mm

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Monday 3rd September 2018 - Monday 3rd September 2018

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Mr Garry CRACE
Identified by: Mr Garry CRACE

Other reference numbers

SMR reference number: Sussex
Other reference: PastfindersI

Materials and construction

Primary material: Copper alloy
Completeness: Complete

Spatial metadata

Region: South East (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: East Sussex (County)
District: Lewes (District)
To be known as: Near Lewes

Spatial coordinates

Grid reference source: From finder
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 1 metre square.

References cited

No references cited so far.

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Audit data

Recording Institution: NMS
Created: 9 days ago
Updated: 9 days ago

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