Bronze Age Gold from Wales

Middle Bronze Age gold bar torc

This is a roughly circular torc or neck-ring, coiled three and a half times. It survives incomplete and in two pieces. The bar is circular in cross-section and plain, lacking any twisting seen on the other three torcs in the hoard. One complete hooked terminal survives, which is plain and circular in cross-section; this was soldered onto the main bar and tapers from the join before expanding towards a flat end. The torc has a break through the bar towards the surviving terminal. This break occurred in 1954, soon after the discovery of the torc. The other terminal has broken just above the hook bend; this break seems to be ancient and appears to be clipped or pinched.

Gold bar torc shaped as an armlet. 1300-1150 BCE.

Project Title: Gold in Britain’s auriferous regions, 2450-800 BC: towards a coherent Research Framework and Strategy. Status: Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Network Grant funded project (2018-2019)

WA_SC 18.1

Open the image ‘gold bar torc’
Image: © Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales
Open the image ‘gold bar torc’
Image: © Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales
Open the image ‘gold bar torc’
Image: © Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales
Open the image ‘gold bar torc’
Image: © Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales
Open the image ‘gold bar torc’
Image: © Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales
Open the image ‘gold bar torc’
Image: © Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales
Open the image ‘gold bar torc’
Image: © Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales
Open the image ‘gold bar torc’
Image: © Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales
Open the image ‘gold bar torc’
Image: © Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales
Open the image ‘gold bar torc’
Image: © Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales

Collection Area

Archaeology & Numismatics

Item Number

54.306/4

Find Information

Site Name: Talwrn Farm, Llanwrthwl

Collection Method: surface find
Date: 1954 / Feb

Notes: Hoard. The hoard was found on/around 21st February 1954 in a field of pasture known as Cae-gwyllt Bank, belonging to Talwrn Farm. Two farm workers were clearing the field of stones for ploughing and found a large stone on its side weighing approximately 100kg, below which was a heap of small stones. Under one of these stones were two torcs of different sizes, and below these was another small stone, which covered a further two torcs. The findspot was near the southern corner of the field on a south-east slope in the Wye river valley. The presence of a possible marker stone, and careful concealment of the torcs, may imply these torcs were buried with the intention of recovery, or for safe keeping. Four years later a Middle Bronze Age gold ring was found about a mile and a half away.

Acquisition

Treasure trove, 23/8/1954

Measurements

length / mm:870.0*
length / mm:38.7 (of terminal)
diameter / mm:4.1 (of terminal)
maximum width / mm:87.0 (of coil; max.)
maximum thickness / mm:2.6 (of wire)
external diameter / mm:106.4 (coil; max.)

Material

gold

Location

St Fagans Wales Is gallery : Gold

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