The Reverend William Greenwell (1820-1918) was a British antiquarian who, throughout a long career of excavating prehistoric barrows, accumulated a large collection of artefacts. This included almost 570 copper-alloy axes from across Europe. Unfortunately, due to practices (or the lack of them) at the time, many of these objects – now curated at the British Museum – have no known provenance or any other contextual information. This had meant that, for the most part, they remained in museum storage, deemed useless for research. A new study, however, has once again brought the axes in this collection to light, by macro- and microscopically analysing them for wear patterns and other signs of use.
An unusual late Bronze Age hoard recently discovered in the west of Cumbria is the first of its kind to be found in the county, it is reported. Comprising a penannular bracelet and three lock rings, all made of gold, as well as a fragment of copper alloy, the hoard was found by two metal-detectorists, […]
What can the glittering weapon fittings from the Staffordshire Hoard tell us about the Anglo-Saxon warrior elite? Lucia Marchini went along to the Bristol Museum & Art Gallery’s latest exhibition to find out. It is a story familiar to many, and a find that has often graced the pages of this magazine (see CA 236, […]
The Staffordshire Hoard is a glittering reminder of the creative talents of the Anglo-Saxons — but now a pioneering research project is revealing that their skills were more far sophisticated than previously imagined, as Carly Hilts learned. When the Staffordshire Hoard was discovered in 2009 (CA 236), the exquisite artistry of its contents immediately […]
In the first half of the 7th century, the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Mercia was ascending towards the zenith of its power, hard-won through decades of conflict with neighbouring peoples. It was at this time, perhaps in the aftermath of another victory, that an influential war leader may have returned to a spot beside the old […]
The Staffordshire Hoard has been assembled in its entirety for the first time since its excavation, revealing a wealth of clues about this unique collection of Anglo-Saxon metalwork.
A record-breaking hoard of Iron Age coins has been found in Jersey, archaeologists have announced. Estimated to contain between 30,000 and 60,000 coins, if the upper estimate is correct the find could push the Frome Hoard of 52,000 Roman coins into second place as the biggest coin hoard ever discovered. Weighing ¾ of a tonne, […]
A Roman imperial jigsaw puzzle The discovery of fragmentary remains of several Roman helmets at Hallaton, Leicestershire, set conservators quite a challenge. Now, over a decade later their work is complete. Helen Sharp and Simon James reveal what has been learnt. It is 11 years since a mass of corroded iron was found in a […]
One summer’s day in 2007 several companions set about an ambitious piece of landscaping in the back garden of their residence in Hackney, Greater London. As their shovels pierced the turf they were likely to have been thinking of the heavy work before them when a chance discovery brought them to a halt; for […]
The chance discovery of a cache of over 3800 Roman coins outside Evesham has raised interesting questions about how accurately we can date finds of this kind. Hoards are typically found in isolated spots, without other archaeological remains, so their date of burial is usually established by when the latest coin was minted. The […]