Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Number 50: Roman Slave Shackle

Iron shackle, likely for harnessing slaves, which dates to Roman times. It was found in Headbourne Worthy in Hampshire.

                                                     Photo Credit Portable Antiquities scheme

Number 49: Hockley Pendant

This is an attractive and finely carved gold reliquary pendant from Hockley in Essex. On one face is an image of the Virgin Mary carrying the cross, while the other features a representation of the blood of Christ. Around the four sides are inscribed the names of the Three Magi. The pendant features a sliding lid, which would have granted access to a relic.

Photo Credit Portable Antiquities Scheme

Number 48: Epsom Horse Harness

Recently found in a field in Surrey, this item is a gilded copper-alloy horse boss (a decorative fitting for a horse's harness) featuring the royal coat-of-arms of the House of Stuart. It is almost certainly from one of the king's own horses, and can be dated by the coincidence of its discovery at the Durdens, an estate belonging to the Berkeley family, visited at least twice by Charles II in the 1660s.

Photo Credit Portable Antiquities Scheme

Number 47: Pitminster Toy Cannon

This is a fabulous example of a child's toy cannon from the 18th Century. Though the copper-alloy item is missing one wheel and the carriage is incomplete, it is still possible to appreciate the remarkable realism with which this was constructed. It may well have been intended to fire real 'cannonballs' using gunpowder!

Photo Credit Portable Antiquities Scheme

Number 46: The Sedgeford torc terminal

A badly damaged gold torc, or necklace, dating to the Iron Age, this item was found in two pieces, on two separate occasions, almost 50 years apart. It appears to have suffered damage from a plow, resulting in the separation of one terminal and the unravelling of the many gold wires that make it up.

Photo Credit Portable Antiquities Scheme

Number 45: A medal from World War One

George Humber's Distinguished Conduct Medal for service in the First World War was found in Limpsfield, Surrey, just outside the M25. Thankfully the finder, Manuel Nicdao, reported it to his Finds Liaison Officer David Williams, who researched Sjt. Humber's story. George Humber was born and died on the Isle of Wight, and so it was agreed to advertise the find in a local paper in an appeal to locate his living relations. Thankfully Mr Humber's family was located and contacted by Frank Basford, the Finds Liaison Officer for the Isle of Wight, and Mr Nicdao was able to pass on the medal to them.

Photo Credit Portable Antiquities Scheme

Number 44: Rochester Cuff-link

This small item, a single silver cuff link button featuring a design of two hearts under a crown, sparked the reporting of over 150 similar styled cufflinks subsequent to its discovery in 2001. They are all decorated with variations on a theme that is believed to relate to the marriage of King Charles II to Catherine of Braganza (Portugal) in 1662. It is now in the collection of the British Museum. 

Photo Credit Portable Antiquities Scheme