Gift of Hogg the Builders of York
Prehistory and Europe
Linchpins from the chariot burial at Wetwang
Iron Age, around 300 BC
East Yorkshire, England
Linchpins have a simple yet vital job: stopping the wheels of the chariot from falling off. There were two pins recovered from the grave at Wetwang, one for each wheel. They are made of iron which on excavation appeared like a large blob of rusty soil. Careful cleaning by the conservator Simon Dove revealed their shape; a 'J' topped by a small loop. Even these pins were decorated, with a collar below the loop and the upper portion dipped into molten bronze, thus giving them a bright, shiny finish.
To find out more and see a reconstruction of the chariot, take the 'Wetwang Chariot Burial' tour.