The Staffordshire Hoard: An Anglo-Saxon Treasure tells the story of the Hoard’s discovery, acquisition for the nation, and the six-year research project that pieced its fragments back together, identified its objects and explored their manufacture. Written by a team of specialists in Anglo-Saxon archaeology and history, and expert conservators with unparalleled access to the Hoard, the text is illustrated throughout with full-colour photographs, maps and explanatory drawings. Key chapters discuss the decoration and meaning of the Hoard’s intricate ornament, the techniques of Anglo-Saxon craftsmen, the religious and historical background, and hoarding practice in Britain and Europe, to place this most exceptional find in context. Finally, the text explores the impact that the find has had locally, nationally and internationally in the twenty-first century.
|Publisher:||Society of Antiquaries of London|
|Series:||Research Report of the Society of Antiquaries of London Series|
|Product dimensions:||8.50(w) x 11.00(h) x (d)|
About the Author
Chris Fern is an independent heritage consultant and a research associate of the University of York, specialising in the archaeology, artefacts and art of early England (AD 450–650). He has published on the funerary practice of Sutton Hoo and other Anglo-Saxon cemeteries, and concerning the period's horse culture and cult.
Dr Tania Dickinson is a specialist in the archaeology of early Anglo-Saxon England. She has written extensively on the burial practices, artefacts and art of the period. She is a former senior lecturer in the Department of Archaeology, University of York, where she now holds an honorary research associateship.
Leslie Webster is Keeper Emerita of the British Museum's Department of Britain, Europe and Prehistory, and former Senior Curator of the Early Medieval Collections; she is also currently Visiting Professor at the Institute of Archaeology, UCL. She lectures and publishes widely on Anglo-Saxon art and archaeology, and has curated major exhibitions on Anglo-Saxon and Insular themes. Her most recent book is Anglo-Saxon Art: a New History (British Museum 2016).
Table of Contents
List of figuresList of tablesList of online tablesAcknowledgementsRésuméZusammenfassungForewordMap 1 The major kingdoms of mainland Britain in the seventh century and battles mentioned in the textMap 2 Main places mentioned in the textIntroduction Part One: The HoardChapter 1. From discovery to acquisition Fieldwork of 2009 and 2010 Fieldwork methodology Fieldwork results Aerial photography assessment Discussion Fieldwork in 2012 Acquisition, funding and project organisation The conservation programme Investigative conservation methodology Garnet cloisonné objects Filigree decorated objects Rejoining and reconstruction Die-impressed silver sheet Conclusion The reliability of the finds context Chapter 2. Characterising the objects Fittings from weaponry Pommels and sword-rings (cat. 1–84) Hilt-collars and hilt-rings (cat. 85–242) Hilt-plates and hilt-guards (cat. 243–409, 696–7) Hilt mounts and other small mounts (cat. 410–537) Fittings from weapon-harness (cat. 572–87) The typological and functional significance of the weapon fittings Conclusion Helmet parts, decorated silver sheet, reeded strip and edge binding Cast helmet parts with animal ornament (cat. 589–92) Silver helmet-band and decorated silver sheet (cat. 593–604 and 606) Reeded strip (cat. 609–13) Edge binding (cat. 614–15) n The form, social context and date of the helmet Large mounts not from weaponry and harness-mount 698 Sets of mounts in garnet cloisonné (cat. 542–66) Mount with fish and birds (cat. 538) Set of silver mounts with niello (cat. 567–71) Harness-mount with interlace (cat. 698) Discussion of the large mounts and harness-mount 698 Christian objects Great gold cross (cat. 539) Socketed-base and pins (cat. 607/8 and 676) Inscribed strip (cat. 540) Head-dress mount (cat. 541) Cross pendant (cat. 588) The Christian objects, function and significance Miscellanea Chapter 3. Workshop practice Analysing the resource Materials Gold Silver, copper alloy and other metals Garnets Glass Unidentified inlay Organics and pastes Other materials Manufacture Casting Sheet and foil Soldering Surface-enrichment of gold Gilding Die-impressing on sheet and foil Reeded strip Incising and punching Niello Filigree Cloisonné and other lapidary work ‘Assembly’ marks and other marks Chapter 4. The lives of objects: wear, modification, repair and damage Wear Modification and repair Damage ConclusionChapter 5. Styles of display and revelation Style and substance Animal ornament in the Hoard Ornament of the helmet and die-impressed sheet Animal ornament Figural ornament Interlace and knots Scrollwork Early Insular style Geometric ornament and symbols ConclusionChapter 6. Date and origin Dating the Hoard Hoard Phase 1: sixth-century silver fittings from weapons Hoard Phase 2 (gold): Anglo-Saxon early Style II, contemporaneous styles and objects, c 570–c 630 Hoard Phase 3 (gold): Anglo-Saxon late Style II, and contemporaneous styles and objects, c 610–c 650 Hoard Phase 4 (silver with gold mounts): Early Insular style objects, c 630–c 660 Summary Origins Mercia Kent, East Anglia or Greater Northumbria ConclusionPart Two: The Broader ContextChapter 7. The historical context: local, regional and national The historical background Barbara Yorke Early medieval Britain in the seventh century The early Mercian kings Religion in early Mercia The findspot of the Staffordshire assemblage and the history of Mercia Conclusion The Church and warfare: the religious and cultural background to the HoardThe contemporary context Christian and pagan culture in the early seventh century Anglian connections ConclusionChapter 8. The archaeological context: matters of material and social significance John Hines The early Anglo-Saxon period: graves and grave goods Social hierarchy and its visibility Resources and their use: the contemporary value of the Hoard The archaeology of early MerciaChapter 9. Hoards and hoarding Introduction Hoarding in later Roman Britain and beyond Peter Guest The hoarding of Roman objects in Britain in the fourth and fifth centuries The status of gold and silver in the later Roman world (and beyond) Dating hoards of late Roman objects Fragmentation of Roman gold and silver objects The hoarding of late Roman objects in post-Roman Britain Hoarding in continental Germanic Europe Matthias Hardt Royal treasure, gift exchange and tribute Precious metal of provincial Roman origin Gold and silver: coins, ingots and rings in Migration period hoards in eastern Central Europe Brooches from deposits in the Carpathian Basin Tableware in hoards from the Danubian area Hoard finds in Italy, Burgundia and Visigothic Spain Hidden treasure in texts from the early medieval period Conclusion Scandinavian hoarding Svante Fischer Imagining Scandinavia Ways of hoarding War booty sacrifices Precious metal hoards and central places ConclusionChapter 10. What does it mean? The exceptionality of the assemblage Key characteristics Comparable assemblages? Towards a biography of the Staffordshire Hoard Assembly A ‘last gathering’ Final selection and disassembly Burial Conclusion: multiple explanations and narrativesAfterword The impact of the Hoard Impact on knowledge of the Anglo-Saxon world Future research Impact on public engagement with the past Jenni ButterworthPart Three: Catalogue and Guide to the Digital ComponentAbbreviated catalogue Guide to the digital component of the publication GlossaryEndnotesBibliography Index