The Archaeology Gallery at West Stow Visitor Centre.
West Stow Archaeology Gallery

The Archaeology Gallery
at West Stow


Picture Page 2

Metal Working Begins

Click images to enlarge

The beaker period culture began in the stone age but continued into the early bronze age. The first two vessels on the left were beakers for alcoholic drink, one from Mitchell's Hill in Icklingham has incised lines, and one from Barton Mills has twisted cord impressions. The larger food vessel on the right, from Warren Hill at Mildenhall, is early bronze age with six pierced lugs for suspension. It was found in 1866 in a barrow holding the remains of a woman. The incense cup at the front, from Barnham, is also from a female barrow, dug in 1957, by A R Edwardson.

The development of the bronze axe-head. The most basic axe at the bottom dates from the beaker period, probably imported into Suffolk, and copied the old stone shaped axes. Gradually flanges and stop ridges were added to assist fixing in a wooden shaft. Sideloops followed and the socket is thought to be the last innovation. All found in Suffolk.

This picture shows copper alloy ingots, examples of bronze axe-heads from early to late Bronze Age, and some spearheads. The spearheads are middle to late period, from c1500BC to 700 BC. All from West Suffolk.

Bronze swords and daggers which cover the whole of the Bronze Age from early to late.
1-5 (vertical) are Early Bronze Age from Herringswell, West Row and Lakenheath.
6-7 (horizontal top) are Middle Bronze Age from West Row and Lakenheath
8-9 Late Bronze Age, "Ewart Park" types, C8-C7 BC from Woolpit and Icklingham
10-11 Late Bronze Age, "Wilburton" type, C10-C9 BC, from Brandon and Barrow
12 (horizontal bottom) Very Late Bronze Age, "Hallstadt" type, c700 BC, from Suffolk

This collared urn dates to the early bronze age, around 1400 BC. It was found in the centre of a bowl barrow on Chamberlain's Farm, Eriswell. Dug in 1966, it was inverted over the cremated remains of a man of about 22.

The late bronze age Isleham Hoard. This major hoard of about 1000 BC is made up of old weapons, tools, ornaments, and sheet metal, broken up into over 6,500 pieces ready to be melted down. It was ploughed up at Isleham, Cambridgeshire, in 1959. Its total weight is about 90 kg, or 200 lb, and is the largest of the period yet found in Britain. The pieces were originally buried in the urn shown here.

Close up of part of the display of the late bronze age Isleham Hoard. This shows groups of the type of scrap metal it contained. It includes old knives, broken tools, horse trappings, strap ends, terret rings, spearheads, studs and sword fragments.

1  2  3  4  5 
[ Prev ]      [ Next ]

Go to Anglo-Saxons homepage Go to Museums homepage Produced 20th August 2009 Go to Main Home Page