staff / spit / measuring-rod / divination-staff
Iron seeress's staff, measuring-rod, or spit (?); Petersen 227 type; square section shank; openwork grip a cage of three twisted rods (only fragments remain) between two large polyhedral knobs; copper alloy ring at end; pointed end bent back in antiquity; ritually "killed"?
- Excavated/Findspot: Villa Farm, tumulus
- (Europe,Scandinavia,Norway,Møre og Romsdal,Romsdalsfjorden,Vestnes,Villa Farm)
- Petersen 227
- Length: 900 millimetres (round the curve)
- Length: 660 millimetres (bent back)
See also 1894,1105.28-31.
For divination-staffs, see: Gardeła, L. (2008) Into Viking Minds: Reinterpreting the Staffs of Sorcery and Unraveling Seiðr, Viking and Medieval Scandinavia 4, 45-84.
For measuring-rods, see: Gustin, I. (2010), 'Of rods and roles. Three women in Birka's chamber graves', pp. 343-354 in C. Theune et al. (eds.), Zwischen Fjorden und Steppe, Rahden.Comment from Kidd, Haith & Ager 'Summary Catalogue' (draft MS)
Villa Farm, Vestnes sn., Romsdalsfjord, Møre og Romsdal, Norway; registration nos. 1894,1105.1-55 'all found in a tumulus' excavated March 30th, 1894; see MS transcript; associated urn not acquired
On display: G41/dc25/sA
2013 26 Jul-16 Oct, Germany, Paderborn, Diozesanmuseum, Christianisation of Medieval Europe
Secondary distortion. Mr. Ian Thackray, a traditional blacksmith, says that the iron would have had to be heated to bend it in such a curve.
Britain, Europe and Prehistory
Iron spit or sorcerer's staff (?); Petersen 227 type; square section shank; openwork grip a cage of twisted rods between two large polyhedral knobs; copper alloy ring at end; bent in antiquity to U-shape; ritually "killed"?
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Object reference number: MCS5724
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