Viking Sword Pommel
11th Century AD
This is a Viking Sword pommel, decorated with classic 'Ringerike' style ribbon decoration.
This simple object is important because it is a type known from 'Viking' period Scandinavia and is rare in this country. It vividly brings to life the violent side of the 'Viking' era. Where did the sword and its owner travel from? Were they part of a war party? Or did it belong to someone who settled in Leicestershire?
We know of Viking settlement from documents and place names, but we have very little evidence of actual 'Viking' objects in the county. Was this rare survival lost in the heat of a battle or was it a treasured possession buried with its owner? We will never know the answers, but the fact that such a simple object can raise so many questions and open a window on our Viking past, makes it very special.
The Portable Antiquities Scheme is changing this, with clusters of objects appearing around Melton, Loughborough and Leicester. To view some of these objects go to finds.org.uk.
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Page Last Updated: 13 May 2013