- Museum number
Copper alloy harness fitting (harness brooch) inlaid with opaque red glass to create a series of interlocking curvilinear motifs. Cast copper alloy plate with two projecting loops at the back of the central section. The loops were cast or brazed on after the plate itself had been made, and were designed for straps not more than 14mm wide. At the back there are also two projecting pieces of copper alloy set close to each other, between which an iron pin was hinged. The ends of the iron pivot on which the pin was hinged are preserved in these two plates. At the other end of the plate and set transverse to its long axis is a projecting copper alloy catch-plate. Both the hinges and the catch-plate were cast or brazed on after the plate itself had been made. The obverse is embellished with red glass 'enamel' inset into the metal. The circular insets were drilled out with a drill that had a small central guiding-point. Bordering the glass (much of which is now missing) and adding extra details to the pattern are incised lines. The plate is bent and cracked.
- Production date
- 50 - 150 (circa)
Length: 150.80 millimetres
Weight: 261 grammes
Thickness: 14.90 millimetres
Width: 73.50 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- From a hoard of metal objects in a pit lined with burnt clay found by chance in ploughing a field in June 1800 near the top of the Polden Hills somewhere near Bridgewater (Harford 1803: 90-1). Harford wrote: "the hoard was ploughed up near the top of Polden Hill near Bridgewater. Polden hill is an eminence on one side of Kings Sedgemoor, a little above the village of Edington, where are evident remains of a Roman station."
According to W.A. Seaby (quoted in C. Fox 1952: 54), the hoard was probably found on Knowle Hill in Bawdrip parish; the source of Seaby's information is not cited, but it may be related to two letters sent to the British Museum (from R. Rainbird Clarke on 26th May 1938 and H.S.L. Dewar on 11th March 1949) which give this location. Mansel Spratling (quoted in Brailsford 1975, 222) has suggested that this could be a confusion arising from the fact that there is a terret from Knowle Hill in Taunton Museum. This terret is very different to the Polden Hill group, and is much more extensively mineralised. It may be safest (as Brailsford has argued) to dismiss the Bawdrip location and accept the original location: 'a little above the village of Edington'.
- On display (G50/dc9)
- Exhibition history
2016 11 Mar- 25 Sep, Edinburgh, National Museum of Scotland, Celts.
2015-2016 24 Sep-31 Jan, London, BM, G30, 'Celts: Art and Identity'
2005 14 Mar-30 Oct, Woodbridge, The National Trust-Sutton Hoo Exhibition Centre, Hanging Bowls
2003 26 Apr-24 Aug, USA, Lexington, Kentucky Horse Park, All the Queen’s Horses
- Acquisition date
- Britain, Europe and Prehistory
- Registration number