Medieval find!

Metal detecting is something l tried once but – whilst my detector is hung up in the garage – l know a lot of you take the whole business a lot more seriously.

 One such enthusiast is Dave Woodward who wants to share a ‘find’ he made with us all.

Dave writes:

“I thought you might be interested to hear about an artifact I found while metal detecting on 30 April near the village of Mark, Somerset.

I found a medieval copper buckle plate with what is thought to be the words AVE MARIA inscribed along its upper and lower edges. That in itself is not particularly remarkable.

However, after both pieces of the broken buckle plate had been removed from the ground, it was evident that there was still well preserved woven fabric attached to the front plate, being held in place by 2 rivets. The rear portion of the buckle plate had become detached due to corrosion.

I posted details of my find on social media and within a very short period had over 25,000 views by excited medieval fabric enthusiasts.

Experts have indicated that the fabric is 13th century in date and as such is incredibly rare to find in good condition. Even the examples of fabric of this age held in museums are nowhere near the quality of my find. They said that chemicals released by the corroding copper backplate had killed any bacteria that would have rotted the fabric.

Experts in medieval weaving have said that the fabric attached to my buckle plate comprises 3 coloured silks that were tablet woven using a technique known as double faced broken twill.  It is 15mm wide and 36mm long.

My find has been recorded on the Portable Antiquities Scheme database, reference GLO-A6B7EE

Very interesting and thanks Dave.