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Axehead (detail)

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from St Andrews, Fife

Axehead (detail)
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This is a detail of a bronze axehead found in 1990 in a hoard of late Bronze Age material at St Andrews in Fife. The hoard contained over 200 tools, weapons and ornaments as well as seven amber beads and three cannel coal bangles. It was buried between 950 and 750 BC.

The end of the socket is pictured here, where the wooden handle would have been inserted. It shows the remains of plant fibres which have been used as a binding. The preservation of this organic material is exceptional, and one of the most interesting aspects of the hoard.

The St Andrews hoard is important because of the number of items it contained, the presence of large numbers of certain items such as pins, and the inclusion of some exotic pieces. In addition, because the hoard was examined very soon after its discovery, many fragments of organic material were preserved.

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