How did it get there?

Post Reply
User avatar
Easylife
Posts: 9758
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2020 2:47 am
Location: Valhalla
Has thanked: 10066 times
Been thanked: 8827 times

A question which no doubt we often ponder over when we find something is - How did it get there? If we are lucky other clues may help to form a feasible answer.

I recently got thinking about a papal bulla which I found a few years ago in a field near a small village. How it got there is anyone's guess but mine is that it was carried as a keepsake or talisman and later casually lost at some point long ago as it was very deep. Apart from many undatable lead weights and several spindle whorls all other finds from that field have dated from about 17th century onwards, so this seemed somewhat out of place.
Papal bulla.jpg
Papal bulla.jpg (31.64 KiB) Viewed 822 times
So a bit about it's known history - It is a lead seal which was attached to an official decree of the pope in Rome. This one dates 1261/4 and is of pope Urban IV, whose real name was Jacques Pantaléon born in 1195 in Troyes, France. He won over to the cause of the Feast of Corpus Christi during his ministry as Archdeacon in Liège. In 1264 throughout the Latin church he sanctioned the Transiturus de hoc mundo -  a decree (papal bull) declaring the first universal feast in the history of the Latin church. Perhaps this lead seal was attached to one of those?
About 7 miles away from the find spot there is a very large church which would have been Catholic at that time so I am guessing that it most likely came from a decree sent there? If so it's quite nice to realize it's journey and be able to form a local connection.
Any opinions or other ideas are most welcome. :thumbsup:

So have you figured out why your finds are where they are?
D2 - 13"x11" coil - audio only.
User avatar
Mucky
Posts: 205
Joined: Sun Jul 26, 2020 10:30 pm
Location: Somerset
Has thanked: 75 times
Been thanked: 154 times

Because some clumsy clot dropped it! :thumbsup:
User avatar
Oxgirl
Posts: 13412
Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2020 4:21 pm
Location: Oxfordshire
Has thanked: 10070 times
Been thanked: 11692 times

I sometimes wonder how many things were buried for safe keeping during the reformation. Buried for retrieval later when the catholic church was re-instated? Obviously didn’t happen and over time it gets forgotten and stays where it is. Or just a casual loss.

I have a couple of fields with 99.9% medieval to post medieval. But once in a blue moon a single Roman item turns up. No rhyme or reason to it so guessing it was just a wandering Roman having a jaunt on a nice summer’s day rather than anything more substantial.

Love the bulla though. Wish I had a casual loss of one of those :Star:
Yes I really don’t like Roman coins, I’m not joking
Blackadder43
Posts: 3767
Joined: Thu Jul 09, 2020 4:08 pm
Has thanked: 2619 times
Been thanked: 2242 times

I think i've told this tale before but as times are lean i'll tell it again :lol:
One of my permissions is smack in the middle of 2 old 13th and 14th century churches, 1 in each small village either side
As the crow flies between the 2 i have located what i believe to have been the pathway that was used to commute between them and the 2 villages
I think i have had about 12 Hammys from along that line
So maybe idle strollers passing through or visiting, or maybe just setting up camp there to rest for the night as there is also a small river running very close by

My explanation for random roman coins islolated on their own is possibly the dumping of soil and earth over the years?
I had 1 farm that you couldnt even chuck anything roman down and find it again, but it did yield 1 solitary roman coin, and that was it!
User avatar
Easylife
Posts: 9758
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2020 2:47 am
Location: Valhalla
Has thanked: 10066 times
Been thanked: 8827 times

Mucky wrote: Thu Feb 11, 2021 9:12 pm Because some clumsy clot dropped it! :thumbsup:
Well if no clumsy clots dropped owt then detecting would be far less popular! :lol:
D2 - 13"x11" coil - audio only.
User avatar
Easylife
Posts: 9758
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2020 2:47 am
Location: Valhalla
Has thanked: 10066 times
Been thanked: 8827 times

Oxgirl wrote: Thu Feb 11, 2021 9:17 pm I sometimes wonder how many things were buried for safe keeping during the reformation. Buried for retrieval later when the catholic church was re-instated? Obviously didn’t happen and over time it gets forgotten and stays where it is.
Now that would make for an interesting find, but unlikely to happen on my land!
D2 - 13"x11" coil - audio only.
User avatar
Kenleyboy
Posts: 1049
Joined: Sat Jul 18, 2020 3:08 pm
Has thanked: 2103 times
Been thanked: 1777 times

That Papal Bulla is a wonderful find :thumbsup:
One of our club members found a hoard of Bronze age axeheads and a spear head some years ago . I think they now reside in Norwich Museum and are on display , an incredible find . They were all deliberately buried in this one spot perhaps to be retrieved at a later stage . For what reason is anyones guess , maybe they were forced to flee and hoping in better times to return but they obviously didnt . I would imagine producing these axeheads was a very time consuming process and quite desirable items to own so there must have been a very good reason to bury them .
User avatar
Easylife
Posts: 9758
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2020 2:47 am
Location: Valhalla
Has thanked: 10066 times
Been thanked: 8827 times

[quote=Oxgirl post_id=14800 time=1613078257 user_id=4
I have a couple of fields with 99.9% medieval to post medieval. But once in a blue moon a single Roman item turns up. No rhyme or reason to it so guessing it was just a wandering Roman having a jaunt on a nice summer’s day rather than anything more substantial.
[/quote]

I quite agree, on one of my permissions that I have extensively searched for a few years only two Roman coins have emerged, both within a few metres of a footpath which seems to be quite ancient and is on higher ground. So maybe just dropped whilst passing through it seems?
Elsewhere near a ploughed out barrow I found a small Roman fibula, I guess that in it's day that mound could have been a focal point to sit and chill?
D2 - 13"x11" coil - audio only.
User avatar
Easylife
Posts: 9758
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2020 2:47 am
Location: Valhalla
Has thanked: 10066 times
Been thanked: 8827 times

Blackadder43 wrote: Thu Feb 11, 2021 9:52 pm I think i've told this tale before but as times are lean i'll tell it again :lol:
One of my permissions is smack in the middle of 2 old 13th and 14th century churches, 1 in each small village either side
As the crow flies between the 2 i have located what i believe to have been the pathway that was used to commute between them and the 2 villages
I think i have had about 12 Hammys from along that line
So maybe idle strollers passing through or visiting, or maybe just setting up camp there to rest for the night as there is also a small river running very close by.
Yes, I remember that story Bruce. Finding hammereds on my main pasture permissions is a very rare occasion indeed. I found my first in a small field, but a couple of years later in the adjacent field I found three more and despite the time frame all were in a dead straight line, so perhaps an old path or just chance? It was inbetween two old water mill sites but not enough to be conclusive.
D2 - 13"x11" coil - audio only.
User avatar
Easylife
Posts: 9758
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2020 2:47 am
Location: Valhalla
Has thanked: 10066 times
Been thanked: 8827 times

Kenleyboy wrote: Thu Feb 11, 2021 11:27 pm That Papal Bulla is a wonderful find :thumbsup:
One of our club members found a hoard of Bronze age axeheads and a spear head some years ago . I think they now reside in Norwich Museum and are on display , an incredible find . They were all deliberately buried in this one spot perhaps to be retrieved at a later stage . For what reason is anyones guess , maybe they were forced to flee and hoping in better times to return but they obviously didnt . I would imagine producing these axeheads was a very time consuming process and quite desirable items to own so there must have been a very good reason to bury them .
Yes, the papal bulla was lucky to survive in such good condition and was completely unexpected. The field has likely mainly been pasture with just the very occasional ploughing, but long enough time for it to sink just below the plough depth and survive.
I understand that the bronze age axe heads were once used as trading currency, but I'd still settle for a single one! :thumbsup:
D2 - 13"x11" coil - audio only.
User avatar
Easylife
Posts: 9758
Joined: Sun Jul 19, 2020 2:47 am
Location: Valhalla
Has thanked: 10066 times
Been thanked: 8827 times

Well long ago I arrived at the conclusion that most of the broken bits and bobs I find were discarded in night soil rather than being broken on the field? Well what is easier than tossing a broken something into the bucket to be disposed of? It's not all bad though as a few good finds likely also got there by this means?
D2 - 13"x11" coil - audio only.
User avatar
DaveP
Posts: 1781
Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2020 11:40 pm
Location: Spread in England
Has thanked: 664 times
Been thanked: 1949 times

A parallel centuries apart. I found a small group of Edward 1st pennies fused together at the edge of a field close to a path line; the thought is they were lost in a pouch which later degraded. Some poor chap probably sat down for his lunch and lost it. On another permission I found two florins and a half crown from the late 1930's in the space of a couple of feet. Also near a track but it's said folks would sit in the field and watch the dogfights during the second world war. Probably two pocket loses centuries apart, just different pockets.
Post Reply