Bronze Age Gold from Wales

Middle Bronze Age gold bead

This is a biconical shaped bead formed from a thin strip of sheet gold, which has been bent to create a central ridge and curved into a bead form. The ends have been hammered and cold welded together to create a hollow cylinder. There is a roughly oval hole, or aperture, at each end for threading the bead. One side and part of one of the apertures is slightly dented and there is a partial tear in the bead wall.

Biconical gold bead, 1300-1150 BCE. Wales was at the heart of a tradition of gold-working in Atlantic Europe during the Middle Bronze Age. This biconical gold bead was among objects found at Burton near the River Alun.

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

Collection Area

Archaeology & Numismatics

Item Number

2005.68H/5

Find Information

Site Name: Burton, Wrexham

Collection Method: metal detector

Notes: Hoard. A hoard of fourteen gold, bronze and ceramic objects were found while metal-detecting in January 2004 in a recently ploughed field in the flood plain of the River Alun at Burton, near Wrexham. Thirteen of these objects were found within a 1.5-2m square area, while a fourteenth was found 24m away. All objects were found 5-20cm below the ground. Subsequently a small archaeological test pit was excavated, which clarified the location of some of the objects. It is possible the objects were deposited within a small ceramic vessel, though only a sherd of this still survives. Two further gold objects were found while metal-detecting in August 2007 a few metres from the hoard findspot and were deemed to also be part of this hoard.

Acquisition

Treasure (1996 Treasure Act), 14/10/2005

Measurements

diameter / mm:10.3
thickness / mm:8.0

Material

gold

Location

St Fagans Wales Is gallery : Gold

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