Axehead (front)

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from St Andrews, Fife

Postcard of Axehead (front).
© National Museums Scotland

Axehead (front)

This bronze axehead was 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 form of the axehead is typical of those found in northern Britain during this period. A wooden handle would have fitted into the axehead's socket. A thong could also have attached the axehead to the socket through the loop. Remains of plant fibres which were wrapped as a binding can be seen near the socket.

Although the St Andrews hoard had been completely disturbed, archaeologists were quickly called in. Prompt examination of the area led to the recovery of many small fragments of textiles, leather, yarn, string, wood and tusk. This is the largest such group of textile, plant and leather remains of this date to have been found in Britain.

Record details

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Online ID: 000-180-000-891-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0504: National Museums Scotland Part 2
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  
Date: Between 950 and 750 BC
  • Cowie, Trevor, O'Connor, Brendan and Proudfoot, Edwina. A Late Bronze Age hoard from St Andrews, Fife, Scotland: a preliminary report. In: Chevillot, C. and Coffin, A (eds). Le Bronze Atlantique, Actes du premier colloque, Beynac 1990, Beynac, 1991, pp 49 
  • Gabra-Sanders, Thea. Textiles and fibres from the Late Bronze Age hoard from St. Andrews, Fife, Scotland - a preliminary reort. In: Jaacks and Tidow (ed.), Arch√§ologische Textilfunde - Archaeological Textiles, Textilsymposium, Neum√ľnster 1993. NESAT 5, Ne 
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