8000 Anglo-Saxon sites for investigation
During my reasearch it has become apparent that hoards associated with the Anglo-Saxon culture, from the 6th century to 1066, are relatively uncommon, could this mean that there are many discoveries yet to be found by looking in the right areas? Those that have been found include both hoards of coins and hoards of jewellery and metalwork such as sword hilts and crosses.
The Staffordshire Hoard (talked about in part 1) is the largest Anglo-Saxon hoard to have been found, comprising over 3,500 items of gold and silver. More Anglo-Saxon artefacts have been found in the context of grave burials than hoards in England.
Finds Group has compiled a Free 33 page PDF (link at the bottom of page) document of Saxon hoard locations, including over 3500 + settlements and known burial grounds, and also military encampments, and surviving buildings in the UK. These can be used to identify areas of Saxon habitation, and possibly help you add to the database of newly discovered hoards.
As with anything, please make sure that you use this information responsibly, and always gain the land owners permission first!
One great example to start with is the Lenborough Hoard. This is a hoard of more than 5,000 late Anglo-Saxon silver coins, dating to the eleventh century, that was found at Lenborough in Buckinghamshire, England. It is believed to be one of the largest hoards of Anglo-Saxon coins ever found in Britain, and was found by a lucky detectorist.
The discovery story
The hoard was discovered, on 21 December 2014, on farmland in the Buckinghamshire hamlet of Lenborough (as per above image), between Buckingham and Padbury, during a metal detectorist rally organised by the Weekend Wanderers Detecting Club involving approximately one hundred people. One of the participants, Paul Coleman, located the coins inside a lead container buried 2 feet (0.61 m) under the ground.
Coleman said that he “found a piece of lead and thought it was junk. But then I looked back in the hole and saw one shiny coin. Then I lifted a larger piece of lead and saw row upon row of coins stacked neatly.” According to Pete Welch, the founder of the club, the coins were in remarkably good condition: “They’re like mirrors, no scratching, and buried really carefully in a lead container, deep down. It looks as though only two people have handled these coins, the person who made them and the person who buried them.“ They were found covered in clay and silt that had seeped through holes in the lead, but otherwise, they were pristine.
Buckinghamshire County Museum archaeologist Ros Tyrell, the Buckinghamshire Finds Liaison Officer for the Portable Antiquities Scheme, was present during the rally to record any objects discovered, and excavated the hoard immediately after it was found.
The list of Saxon research data available at Finds Group comprises of details to the locations of hoards of coins, jewellery, precious and scrap metal objects and other valuable items discovered in Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales). The data includes a total of over 8000 peices of saxon reaserch data to help you identify new areas of interest to detect.
The map above gives the general geographical locations of just a small handful of the saxon information available from Finds Group. The finds dates of the hoards range between the late 1700s to today, so some were found when metal detectors were not available, this means you may be able to recover items missed at the time of the original discovery .
If you would like the full free 33 page PDF of the find coordinates of hoards, over 3500 settlement locations, and other saxon related material we have compiled, you can obtain it by clicking here, and head for the files section at Finds Group.
How you use the coordinates
By inputting these coordinates into google maps you will be able to see the exact find locations for the hoards, this is an excellent site/area reasearch document, and we’ve done all the work for you!
If you found this post informative, please make sure you read our other hoard site posts in this series. Also please leave your comments on the post, and also spread the word about Finds Group.
Future posts include:
Part 4 – Viking hoard locations
Part 5 – Medieval hoards & Post-Medieval hoard locations
- Hoard sites that still produce more (part 2 of 5)
- Hoard sites that still produce more (Part 1 of 5)
- Metal Detecting site research.
- Rolling back to older versions of Google maps for metal detecting site research.
- Metal detecting for beginners – the complete guide.
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