Another Funny Brooch

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Here’s a funny little guy from our site in Kaga. It’s a crumpled-up disc-brooch, about 75% complete, original diameter 71 mm, copper-alloy pin extant and folded into the brooch, pin-catch extant on back, apparently soldered on.

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On the surface of the brooch are a central large boss with mock-filigree, surrounded by five identical ones, and outside those five are another five smaller bosses. All in all eleven bosses. The surface of the brooch is divided into petal-like fields by lines of tiny bumps. All decoration is visible on the back side too: most of the piece is just 0.6 mm thick.

I really wonder about this baby. Judging from the rest of the finds on-site, it’s likely to date from after AD 400. But it doesn’t look much like anything Scandinavian from the period 400-1100. (During this period, Scandy brooch pins are almost exclusively iron.) It does look a bit like a cheap version of a Kentish 6th century cloisonn√© brooch. So my guess is that this piece is either

  • English/Frankish 400-1100,
  • Scandy 1100-1500, or
  • Continental 1100-1500.

Anybody able to help?

Comments

  1. #1 Dan
    April 16, 2008

    Martin,
    I’ve looked through our database and found very few examples that match your brooch. There’s this cloissone one:
    http://www.findsdatabase.org.uk/hms/pas_obj.php?type=finds&id=0013EA1612001250#a0013EA1612001250
    which has a slight similarity. The ring and dot does indeed suggest that it fits the Early Medieval date, but it doesn’t look like one of our typical cloissone examples. So I wonder if this is more likely to be a crushed saucer brooch? Have a look through these and see if you can see any matches:
    http://www.findsdatabase.org.uk/search/index.php?loadsearch=1064#a1064
    Regards,
    Dan

  2. #2 paddy
    April 17, 2008

    Good to see you found a use for that measuring stick (or whatever the official name for that thing is)!

  3. #3 Christina
    April 18, 2008

    Holy sh… I don’t even remember when my hands looked that “un-excavating-stuff”-ish. They’re permanently messed up now, and my nails…well, let’s not even go there.
    Oh, nice find, too!!

  4. #4 Martin R
    April 19, 2008

    Thanks Dan! Looks like we can rule out the English connection.

    Christina, have you considered wearing protective gloves?

  5. #5 M E Starr
    July 12, 2008

    See what I meant about context?
    Okey, maybe it was a plowzone find, but getting it out of an ex u would be so much better.

    I got to go. Glad you are up to so much and haven’t yet sold your soul to get a real job. And about getting your licks in on Bad Bob. Take it easy.

  6. #6 Martin R
    July 13, 2008

    Thanks Mary! Always great to read your comments.

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