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Immense Anglo-Saxon Gold and Silver Hoard Discovered

Immense Anglo-Saxon Gold and Silver Hoard Discovered

The Stafforshire Hoard



Experts in Great Britain are overwhelmed by both the magnitude and the quality of the objects, which include not only coins but beautifully-crafted works of art. There are 1,500 items, most of which are warfare-related (sword pommel caps, hilt plates) and jewelry, crosses, and decorative items designed to be worn by males rather than females. It appears to be a collection of trophies, perhaps from a battle or the accumulation of a military career.

The Staffordshire Hoard contains about 5kg of gold and 2.5kg of silver, making it far bigger than the Sutton Hoo discovery in 1939 when 1.5kg of Anglo-Saxon gold was found near Woodbridge in Suffolk.

Leslie Webster, former keeper at the British Museum’s Department of Prehistory and Europe, said: “This is going to alter our perceptions of Anglo-Saxon England as radically, if not more so, as the Sutton Hoo discoveries.

“(It is) absolutely the equivalent of finding a new Lindisfarne Gospels or Book of Kells.”

Some of the gold pieces are inlaid with precious stones such as garnets. The hoard appears to date from the 7th century; at present there is no indication of who owned it or why it was buried in the Staffordshire field.

Link to BBC article and slideshow of 12 photos.

Link to a gallery of photos at The Guardian.

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