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Iron hipposandal

 

Length: 22.500 cm

P&EE 1871 7-14 22

Prehistory and Europe

    Iron hipposandal

    Roman Britain, 1st-2nd century AD
    From Sun Street, Bishopsgate, London

    Nailed horseshoes were known but rarely used by the Romans. Much more common were iron hipposandals, a form of temporary shoe that could be fastened to the hoof for use on metalled roads and easily removed when not required. Hipposandals were probably intended for draught animals: horses, ponies or mules. Because the animal's hoof exerted great pressure, they had to be made from thick metal. The underside was often given a tread to increase the animal's grip on the surface of the road.

    Like many Roman metal finds from London, this large example is in almost new condition, having been preserved in waterlogged ground.

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