- Museum number
Copper alloy tanged dagger; flat lingulate blade with marked edge-bevels, angled shoulders to narrow tang with slight hammered flanges; possible curved hilt-mark defined by corrosion pattern.
Length: 36 millimetres (tang)
Length: 160 millimetres
Weight: 43.27 grammes
Thickness: 2 millimetres (blade)
Thickness: 2 millimetres
Width: 14 millimetres (tang)
Width: 41 millimetres
- Curator's comments
Description of site: Probably on gravel terrace in river valley.
Circumstances: Grave, ? in destroyed barrow, with inhumation accompanied by dagger at side and Beaker at knees; found before 1845, probably in gravel-quarrying; Beaker destroyed and known only from sketch of sherd in Jesse King MSS (Ashmolean Museum; Case, H.J., 1956. Beaker pottery from the Oxford region: 1939-1955. ‘Oxoniensia’ 21, 11 and fig.5).
History of ownership: Originally in the Jesse King collection when exhibited to the British Archaeological Association in 1845 (Pettigrew, T.J., 1860. On the history and antiquities of Berkshire. ‘Journal of the British Archaeological Association’. 16, 33); bought from James Wareham by the British Museum in 1862.
Contextual information: 2a.
Dating and interpretation: Of 21 examples attributable to tanged dagger class, 11 are without real context; 10 grave associations, all with inhumations and 7 with W/MR Beakers (to Gerloff, S., 1975 ‘The Early Bronze Age Daggers in Great Britain.’ (Prähistorische Bronzefunde VI.2, Munich) add Barnack and Chilbolton: British Bronze Age Metalwork A7 and A17); Shrewton 5 exceptionally with N2 Beaker but dagger of ? developed rivet-tanged form (Gerloff 1975, no. 12), as is Sittingbourne dagger, which has no proven ceramic association (British Bronze Age Metalwork A13); stone bracers with 6; barbed and tanged arrowheads, bone spatulae and belt-fittings each with 2; unique associations of racquet-headed pin, gold discs and 'earrings'; whole commensurate with developed Beaker attribution in advance of main insular dagger series.
Comparisons: Tanged copper daggers (Gerloff 1975, no.7); shoulder and blade form close to Mere 6a (Gerloff 1975, no.6).
Lying by a skeleton with traces of a wooden handle.
Association: Beaker (Clarke group) W/MR [?]
Bibliography: D. Britton, Traditions of metal-working in the Later Neolithic and Early Bronze Age of Britain I, Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society (Cambridge) 29, 1963, 298 Table 2 No. 1; D. L. Clarke, Beaker Pottery of Great Britain and Ireland, Vol. II, 1970 475 No. 36; 297 Fig. 137.
- On display (G51/dc6)
- Britain, Europe and Prehistory
- Registration number