A corroded iron sword, 786 mm long, of which the blade is 643 mm long. On discovery it was badly damaged in a length between 370 and 500 mm from the top of the blade, and below that it is slightly distorted, so the taper is difficult to assess. The blade is still quite broad just above its point, so the taper is perhaps comparable with that of the Battersea blade (1861,0620.3). The blade is 49 mm wide at the top and is lenticular in section (12 mm thick at the top) without an obvious median ridge. Doubtless the tang has been rectangular in section, but much of it is obscured by mineral-preserved organics. The handle had been made of bone (of an unidentified taxon: a small sample was removed and thin-sectioned by Caroline Cartwright, Department of Scientific Research, British Museum), and constructed in two lengths divided by a fairly thick (5 mm) iron washer. The upper length is now 72 mm, but a line in the corrosion parallel with and 7 mm above the washer suggests that once it may have been shorter. At the top, corrosion products from the tang have extended into vertical cracks in the bone handle. The bottom of the lower length of the handle may have been cracked too, because there is a very marked but narrow expansion of the corrosion products on one side. At the top of the tang, above the mineral-preserved organics, is a pronounced but corroded button; at the bottom of the handle is a separate iron hilt end that is slightly convex, only 5 mm high on one face and 7 mm on the other.
© The Trustees of the British Museum
Using this image
To license images for charged-for journals and publications, and other commercial uses, please contact British Museum Images.
Contact BM images
The image will be released to you under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0) license. You can read more about the British Museum and Creative Commons here.
Download this image
If you cannot see an image that you want on the British Museum website, you can order new photography from us.
Order new image